Date: Sunday, May 2nd, 2010
Travelled from: Vidalia, LA to Sikeston, MO, 496 miles
Parked at: Hinton RV Park, Sikeston, MO
Ok, maybe I exaggerate a bit – it was actually 496 miles!! Ken and I had determined that if we left at 8:00 and took two lane highways through Louisiana and Arkansas we should be able to skirt the backside of this devilish storm system that has reeked such havoc on the Central US.
We had planned to stop at about 250 miles but with no wind and no rain Ken said he wanted to push on. Our previous record in the motorhome for a day was just over 400 miles so we were very surprised at being able to rather comfortably make it almost 500 miles.
Also unexpectedly, the route we’d chosen took us through some of the tornado devastated sections of Arkansas, just northeast of Little Rock. Dozens of utility trucks lined the roads, slowing us down to one lane traffic in a few areas. Utility poles in some areas looked like they were snapped like toothpicks. There were a couple of houses, mostly gone, where it looked like there were large groups of friends and neighbors gathered to help search through the rubble for what was left of the family’s household goods. Nearby trees were mostly twisted and uprooted, with those still standing filled with the tin siding that was once a grain bin. It was sort of strange. Ken and I didn’t say much as we just drove through, sort of in shock of the whole scene. It was only after a few more miles down the road that I realized I’d never even considered grabbing my camera to record what we saw.
It was all very sad, but also reminded me how lucky we had been that we’d decided not to start our trek North earlier.
As we started veering back toward the East, the storms’ devastation presented in a different form, one that we have experienced personally. We were surrounded by flooding. One of our chosen connecting highways was closed. Often we drove for miles where the surrounding fields were covered with water for as far as you could see.
This semi-driver obviously was not lucky enough to be able to stay out of the storm. We can only hope he made it out ok.
These folks may be having second thoughts about the location selected for building their new home.
We arrived in Sikeston at 6pm. It seems that regardless of the type of route we always average 50mph and about 10.2 mpg!
We chose the Hinton RV Park because of its high rankings on www.rvparkreviews.com as a very good overnight stop and also because those reviews mentioned that a shuttle was provided to and from Lambert’s restaurant, home of the throwed roll. This meant with a pull thru site we didn’t have to unhook the jeep, making it a really easy stopover after the long day.
The shuttle driver not only picked us up at our site but also took us in a side door of Lambert’s and got us a table immediately so that we didn’t have to wait in the long line that was on the outside porch. This earned him a nice tip!!
The restaurant was packed but that didn’t mean we had to wait long for anything. In fact, I think we were asked at least 3 times each if we wanted more fried potatoes, fried okra, tomatoes and macaroni or blackeyed-eye peas. I know the Eastern football team stopped here on one of their trips to Southeast Missouri State. We were imagining just how much food those two buses of players could have consumed at a place like this!
And, of course, there were the hot ‘throwed rolls’. Ken is not usually a big bread eater but he has fun with this, and with them so hot and fresh, with apple butter slathered over them, he was getting full on the rolls alone.
I had liver and onions and Ken had the pork steak. Both were very good. All of the sides were great as well with the exception of the candied yams and the macaroni and tomatoes which we wouldn’t recommend.
We no sooner paid our tab and walked to the side door than the shuttle driver was ready to return us to the RV park.
Even with the 500 miles of driving and dinner at Lambert’s, we still made it back to the rig in time to get this shot of the sunset.