We last left off with me and AGP heading towards Mammoth Caves National Park to meet our friends...
The next morning we raced our way to the park headquarters with intention of taking advantage of our unique and incredible locale by going on a guided tour (the only possible way to explore any of the cave system), and by golly we made it in the nick of time, due to our chronic tardiness. We chose the Violet City Lantern tour that was lit only by, you guessed it, lanterns! We walked three miles with our lanterns guiding the way and learned all about the history of Mammoth Cave. We even got to check out the "hospital" rooms built to heal patients with TB with the "magical" healing power of cave air. Then after BBQ at the Smokey Pig, we high-tailed it towards Memphis (my fifth time hauling ass down I-40).
The next morning, we made it for breakfast in time for lunch at famous Gus’ Fried Chicken, only to realize that the line was way too long for us hungry, hung-over assholes (but we did manage to grab some to go after our actual breakfast at a joint nearby). As the sky turned green and murky and news channels were warning us to get-the-hell-off-the-road, Leah, AGP, and I waited patiently in a western Memphis Jiffy Lube for my car to get a much need oil change and all that other jazz that they say cars need that ends up costing $400. The plan for the day was to FINALLY get back to Hot Springs, Arkansas!! We even had plans with Miki-mom and Chad-dad to meet up in Jessieville.
We crossed the Mississippi River in a full-on deluge, me pretty much hoping that a tornado wasn’t about to drop down on our asses from the green sky above. After a quick Gus’ chicken snack at a fun zone outside of Little Rock, we were able to catch up with Miki, her nephew, and mother at The Shack in Jessieville. (If you want to read about how we adopted a family in Arkansas, read it here). After an evening of burgers and rapid-fire questions including, “What’s your favorite meal?” and “Where are your parents from?” we headed up Route 7 to meet the rest of our crew at Lake Dardanelle. At least we were in a car that worked this time!!
We were only at Dardanelle for a night because the next morning we were on our way to Wakarusa Music Festival in Ozark, Arkansas! In fact, we had five more friends to meet up with, food and supplies to gather, an tentatively awesome camp/festival home base to set up, and crazy cool music to check out… a busy day indeed!!
[Stay tuned for more adventures!]
Coming up- Go: Okla-home