Conway Arkansas?? – Yeah… Ya see, Gome… I left Wrens to go to ‘Lanna. (Atlanta, that’s the way they say it there, OR… “HotLanta” – I prefer ‘Lanna.)
I’m telling you the truth when I say that ‘Lanna is a traffic MESS. I got stopped just outside of their perimeter-road; and couldn’t go anywhere.. ANYwhere… So, I just parked it at a Quality-Inn, and let my bud, Jon Jefferies, come over to see me. HE… lives there, I DON’T. – Get this… even Jon had a hard time getting over to the ol’ “Q-I” – But, it was definitely good to see him… He was the last on “the list”, — the list of peeps I wanted to see on this trip. — (that’s his black Beemer beside my bike)
Jon is a radio hot-rod, a “sports-talk” jock at one of ‘Lanna’s hot radio stations. He’s done well. He USED to be THE NUMBER ONE “Rock ‘n Roll’ jock at Omaha’s legendary KFAB. Seriously, at the time, he was hotter than Las Vegas on July the 4th . But… remember Harry Chapin’s song: W.O.L.D.? – Well, Jon too… got old, (if 31 is old) and they kicked him to the curb. But, he recovered well and went on to make a name for hisself in syndicated radio. Mind you, he’s still a punk; but people in ‘Lanna think he hung the moon. – Aint life great…
I bet you’re wondering if I got those damn ‘All-the-way-dogs’, right?? – NO! – It’s one of the few times I’ve been out-maneuverd by the fates. I had it all figured out. I blasted out of the Quality Inn… roared west on I-20; I was like a pro half-back, runnin’ with the football… maneuvering in and out of ‘Lanna’s traffic… leaving wakes of traffic tie-ups behind me… I’m serious, several times I was ‘floor-boarding’ my bike past 90.
I got all the way to the downtown-connecter that takes you to The Varsity and that ‘mother-blanker’ was backed up tighter than a constipated race horse. I actually screeched to a stop over in an illegal parking zone, right in the middle of I-20 West. “Well, ‘blank’” I said. “I guess I’m not going to the Varsity.’ – (blif / splik / drat / dagnabbit).
So, I recognized my fate, and limped away (almost got run over by a FedEx-truck as I pulled away.) – Depressed, I gave him the finger and roared past him… I’m serious, it was a major defeat not to get those dogs… they’re like an Olympic medal… “Who among us, cannot say, “All-the-way-dogs” are not the true mark of a champion?” – Like John Henry, the steam-drill had defeated me, and I limped out of ‘Lanna, (at about 87 MPH)
“Homeward Bound”, at last. I cheered up as I got closer to Birmingham, (somewhat). There’s an actual ‘traffic-column’ between ‘Lanna and Birmingham; the only birght spot was TWO truck ‘weigh-stations’ that held up my evil foe, “the trucks”. I cackled like a mad man, as I sped by them, noticing how many were shaking their fists at me. “We’ll get you, ‘motorcycleMan’; next time, next time, next time…. It grew fainter and fainter as I sped away in victory.
B’ham was rapidly behind me as I plunded thru Jasper, and on to Tupelo. I was just outside of “Tupes” when I faded, and ducked into Fulton, MS. – Fulton is named after Bishop Fulton J. Sheen of tele-vangical fame. They even have a bronze statue of him, next to highway 78… “touching”, if you think about it. – I spent the night at a VERY comfortable DaysInn… arguably one of the best “economy” motel chains in America.
I developed a ‘rating model’ on motel chains. I call it the “Motel-6” scale. The ‘Motel-6’ median point is literaly “6”… and everything is either lower than ‘6’ or greater than ‘6’. For instance, the Quality Inn in ‘Lanna was a Motel-6 scale of 8… pretty good, actually. The DaysInn in Fulton was very close to an 8, (I don’t like to get too granular.)
I had a fabulous ‘truckers-breakfast’ at the Huddle-House in Fulton before I split. I blasted out to Fort Smith, ARE-Kansas this morning, with the full intention of making it all the way.
A ‘Tampa-like’ rain engulfed me just before Conway Arkansas, and I took it as a sign from God that I ought to spread my message there. – The rain was so hard that I literally could not see five feet to either side of me. I had my rain gear on and everything, and I was SOAKED. – I actually ‘guessed’ there was an exit where I pulled off… and at the top of a rainy / foggy / misty hill there stood a… (wait for it…) a… “Days Inn” (can you hear the music??)
The lady at the front desk greeted me like I was her son… “Come on in heah, boy; you gonna catch your death out thea” – (She had no idea how right she was) – I parked my bike under the canopy, and wondered at the might of simple WATER.
After I checked in, and drug my bags into my room, the front desk momma… said to bring my clothes up to the laundry and she’d dry them for me.
You know, by and large, pretty much at the 90% level, Americans are great people. I’ve been about 40,000 miles on my various bikes since I turned 66… and I have never had even ONE bad experience. Oops… there was one guy who was gonna try and rob me, one time in St. George, but I explained to him why that was a bad idea… Let me know if you want to hear the story.
Also, I have one OTHER story I’ve been keeping from you… I don’t know, think I should share it? It involves the Poh-lece…
Just so you know, I’m leaving Conway in the morning and going to Oklahoma City, Okalhoma.. I don’t know why they have so many redundant cities in Oklahoma… After Ok-City (there, that’s better) I’m going to Amarilla… (that’s the way they say it); them Texicans…
PS – here’s my “Tracking-Page” (http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0seJseUF8nps5v94ORZolubfWN1AosNFO)