Saturday, March 5, 2011

Back 1100 Miles West

After a long but rather uneventful three day drive from Atlanta we finally arrived in Laredo on Sunday, February 27. Another area, 99% of Texas except for the Gulf Coast such as Corpus Christi, Port Aransas and North and South Padre have now been crossed off of "the list". A drive across Texas is definitely a step above a drive across Kansas or Nebraska but not by much! We definitely know that although God may have blessed Texas he sure didn't bless it with exciting scenery nor any place that we would like to stay for any length of time. So far on the list of "we would love to spend a few months here places" is in no particular order:

1. Heber Valley in Utah
2. San Diego (well MY list at least as Bill keeps up about the traffic!)
3. Gulf Coast of Mississippi
4.Gulf Coast of Texas
5.Black Hills of South Dakota

We do have quite a bit of the country to see yet including many coastal areas that I am sure we are going to love, but it is nice to narrow down our choices.When we got here on Sunday it kept getting progressively warmer, or should I say hotter. It turned out to be around 100 degrees that day and it sure made for a miserable night for sleeping seeing as we are boondocking in a Walmart parking lot a mile or so from Bill's store. We would really like to not have to start getting a campsite until at least June like last year in order to hopefully get ahead a bit. Of course, driving 1100 miles for 2 weeks of work and then driving 1100 miles back to the exact spot, Atlanta, does not make for much savings by the time we put gas in the rig. It is quite evident that Prime does not pay any travel expenses as they don't think twice about scheduling something like this. And now with gas being $3.39 a gallon there is not the ability to pay that plus a campground and get caught up...always something.

We stopped the first night in a small town truck stop about an hour north of Biloxi which was our intended target for Wednesday night. We didn't get out of Austell until early afternoon as Bill worked straight through from 8pm until 12pm the next day....the store had major issues. So he had a beer and rode shot gun while I tried to get us back on schedule. We finally had to stop as the deer were out near the highway in full force and I just don't want to deal with hitting one. We made it to Biloxi by late morning on Thursday and were able to visit the casinos while boondocking in the Imperial Palace large vehicle area. We were a little disappointed in the freebies given upon sign up for a players card. The only casinos that gave anything were  the Island View and the Grand so we at least were able to walk out with some free money. Junior got lucky at the Island View and hit "something" on a slot machine and won about $70....we were playing slots instead of video poker as the casino only allowed free play on slots.

We left Biloxi and continued the drive west along the coast instead of heading inland to I-10, spending the night on the Texas-Lousiana border at a truck stop next to a nudie bar....gotta love it. We had to go right through the center of Houston on I-10 to US 59 so we wanted to hit on midday on a Saturday for the least amount of craziness. We probably will not have that luxury when we head back to Atlanta unfortunately. Saturday night we again spent the night in a truck stop, this time a very small one, which left about 100 miles to go to get to Laredo on Sunday.

About 70 miles east of Laredo we went through the town of Freer Texas...notice the small oil well in the left of the picture which was the first one in Texas in 1860.
Inhabitants include 3,240 people as well as the world's largest rattlesnack as you can see here. It is home to the yearly "Official" Rattlesnake Round Up
of Texas in March. What I wonder is how or what makes it "official"?

Next stop, Laredo, which deserves it's own entry for better or for worse....mostly for worse.

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