So I’m alive, and in St. Louis, MO. I started out from Kenosha, WI on Friday (Apr 22) around 4:30 pm. I drove across southern Wisconsin through a lot of rain, farm fields, and rolling hills. Most of my time was spent plotting ideas for a future Wisconsin-themed sleeve (that’s a tattoo that covers your whole arm, mom and dad). Yeah, that’s going to happen. I foresee a deer, rolling hills, bluffs, a robin, perhaps some other little critters and some prairie plants. I think this is a perfectly logical idea.
My first night was spent at a rest stop just outside of Dubuque, IA right along the mighty miss’sip. (The coughing started this night.) If there’s one thing I’ve learned so far, it’s that Iowa at least seems cool – along the river, that is. (For those of you who don’t know, I’m headed to New Orleans via the Great River Road.) I drove around Dubuque looking for young people or decent bar to have a beer at, maybe meet some locals, see what happened. Nothing. Dubuque seemed cool, but it didn’t really proliferate. Neat bluffs and old churches, though.
Then I forged on, following the river, through lots of neat little Iowan towns with little strips of business. A very special thing happened along the way, something that perhaps those of you who know me may have seen coming. I stopped for gas and decided to explore a bit and went into The Gazebo, an antique shop. Hold the phone, everybody, antique shops are awesome. I love old crap. So, surprise surprise, I now love antique shops. I admit, however, I’m a bit too cheap for most things and prefer the challenge of finding old things at thrift stores. Nevertheless, I found a delicious orange enamel cast iron skillet and a bag of old buttons. You know me and my buttons.
Despite the fact that the Mississippi is the largest river system in North America, people still find it necessary to clutter her shores with things like that weird gold ball.
- I have never seen so much pro-life propaganda in my entire life
- Roadkill actually devastates me. I hate seeing little crushed furry things. I’ve seen at least 5 woodchucks (tupacs, Anne) countless deer, raccoons, squirrels, and one kitty 😦 incredibly sad.
- I really like birds. I want to know more about them. I’ve seen and heard many interesting birds on my journey thus far.
- Could do without the rain. Really.
- St. Louis is REALLY FAR IN from the “avenue of the saints.” (where ever that was and however I got on it.)
- It seems even FURTHER IN when it’s FUCKING POURING.
- I hate driving in heavy downpours.
- Big cities are diverse. Pulling over to sleep in a neighborhood may not always be as friendly and harmless as it seems. It might just be raining.
- There are a lot of people in sweatpants in St. Louis. And fancy dresses. Easter, right, lots of church goers today.
So I’m in St. Louis at a coffee shop right now with that nice dog. I didn’t actuallysee Nelly, I just thought instantly of Nelly as I got in town. His presence is in the air. Had a couple of beers at a mediocre bar last night while I continued reading Watership Down like the super hip young lady that I am (not). Drove outside of the city a bit an slept in the car again. Woke up with a sore throat.
Pretty sure I got strep throat as a going away present from work. 🙂 A cup of tea with honey seems to help though. All in all, it’s not really affecting me much other than the occasional painful cough. Nights of mediocre car sleep probably aren’t helping the immune system too much, but eh, I won’t die.
So I think I’m gonna mosey out of town in a couple of hours and head to Memphis. Tool around there tomorrow and head to Baton Rouge where my “plans” start to come into play. Places to sleep, concerts, etc. NOLA wed-sat and and head back to the northcountry Saturday evening. Provided I survive the way down there.
This peaceful alone time is just what I needed. Feelin’ good, despite the throat thing and the rain. NOLA or bust!