Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Road Trip - On the Road with the Farmer's Wife

Some of my readers knew our destination, based on things I've said about the land we own and clues, such as "Alligator Farm" and "chopped pork barbecue and tamale spread". Our desination was Hot Springs, Arkansas.

We left home late afternoon on Friday just as Ike was blowing his way on to the Texas coast. We arrived in St. Louis hours later and I managed to snap a shot of the arch out the car window.


The Farmers assures me that the ride to the top is not for anyone suffering from claustrophobia.

A short distance later we crossed the Mississippi just as the sun set.


When we returned a week later the Mississippi would be flooding the surrounding land.

We stopped in Festus, Missouri for the night and dined on our first of many, many meals. The residents of Festus started quite a panic in anticipation of Ike doing damage to the oil rigs and pipelines. Someone started the rumor that gas would become scarce and everyone in town rushed the gas stations basically leaving the town high and dry and closing several of the stations.

After surviving the Festus panic we drove south through New Madrid which is the site of the worst earthquake in U.S. history. Yes, the most dangerous fault in the North American continent lies in the American midwest.

A short time later we crossed the state line into northeast Arkansas which is the flattest place I've ever seen. It makes Illinois look positively mountainous. The fields are filled with cotton. We didn't seen any rice planted during this trip but this area provides most of the country's rice.

Look what we found - a Stuckey's! I didn't know there were any of these places left.


It was pretty dreadful and tired looking inside and out. This display left no question as to our location. It's an Arkansas Razorback, the University's mascot.


Oh no, what's this on the ground?


The Farmer treated himself to an ice cream bar and the minute he walked outside it proceeded to melt and plop to the ground.

The look on his face was priceless. He was crestfallen, just like a young child. Don't worry, he bought himself another one.

When I downloaded the photos from the trip a disturbing trend was revealed. It appeared that we were on a mission to eat our way across three states. We did a pretty good job in that regard. Be sure to check back tomorrow when we'll check out a contender for the perfect piece of pie and tales of Hurricane Ike's appearance!

NOTE: The post cards were mailed out last Saturday. Be looking for them any day now.


Mamahut said...

Looks like fun. My MIL lives in Northern Ar. I do love to go visit them because my dad was born in Paris Ar. and that makes me think I somehow relate to them lol.

Lori said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lori said...

The farmer is right. The Arch is no place for someone who is claustrophobic or has a fear of heights. It tends to sway when it's breezy. Done it once but sure don't plan on doing it again.

I had to laugh at your eating across 3 states comment. We used to joke about writing a book entitled "Eating Across America." Isn't that the best part about traveling? We love to find new out of the way places to eat while we go.

Significant Snail said...

I live in Arkansas for almost 8 years and always looked forward to trips to Hot Springs. Did you go to a bath house and relax? The lakes around there are beautiful.

Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

Stuckeys! I used to love their pecan rolls. Did you happen to get one?

Looking forward to more of your Eating Tour tomorrow!

How's the laundry coming along?

belladella said...

All my travels have an eating theme to them! You know, I don't think I've been to Arkansas- not even driven through it. Hmmm?

Can't wait to hear more.

becky said...

Welcome back! My favorite thing about vacating is trying all the different foods!
And as far as that arch goes, I don't have clausterphobia, and was not a fan of the trip to the top. And the worst part is, you have to come back down the same way. eek.

Chris said...

Suzanne, my husband & I love driving trips! And I remember trips with my parents where Stuckey's was the highlight of the day!

Glad you're home. Enjoyed the Deja Vu posts and can't wait to hear your new tales!


Laura said...

Hey, I received my postcard yesterday and it was such a treat to get it! Thanks so much for including me in this. I'll have to do one the next time I go somewhere! Welcome home!

Jill said...

Oh I'm so glad you're back!!! I look forward to hearing all about your trip - and seeing the photos. :)

I chickened out of going in the arch when my family drove through St. Louis on our cross country motor home trip. Scared of heights...

Mrs Parks said...


I LOVE getting stuff in the mail, but I hate dropping my ice cream on the sidewalk :(

I'm REALLY glad your back!

StitchinByTheLake said...

I'm sorry I didn't get to see you - maybe next time! I hope all your planning and meetings went well. (I won't go up in that arch - way to high for me.) blessings, marlene

lifeinredshoes said...

I thought you'd never get back!


Too bad you didn't have a video camera when he dropped the ice cream!

chocolatechic said...

I have been up in the arch. It is a tight fit.

I can not believe you stopped in Festus. That is about 20-30 miles north of the town I lived in when my son was born.

Heather said...

It sounds like a fun trip. I've never been to a Stuckeys.

Suzanne said...

mamahut - I saw a sign for Paris, Arkansas. I think there must be a Paris in every state in the U.S.

Lori - I wouldn't even attempt that arch. My sister went on one of those cave tours where you have to crawl through a space not much larger than your body. NO WAY!!! I'm thinking about doing an "Eating Across America" book. I've already got a good start.

S-Snail - We didn't do the bath house this time around. We overbooked ourselves and spent tow days dealing with Ike. The lakes are really beautiful, as are the Ouchita Mountains.

Vee - I know Stuckey's is known for their pecan rolls but this place was pretty awful. I didn't want to eat anything from there. The Farmer is more adventuresome.

BellaDella - We'd never been to Arkansas either until our friends moved there. We were so surprised and the great natural beauty of the state.

Becky - I know. The trip up would freak me out so bad I'd be panic stricken on the way back down.

Chris - When the Farmer and I finally retire we'd like to take one of those classic "across America" road trips, catching alot of side roads along the way.

Laura - I'm so glad the post card made it's way to you. Did I make any sense? I was so tired the night I wrote those out.

Jill - You chickened out?? That's a good thing.

Mrs. Parks - Another Post Card Project person heard from. Goody, goody, I'm glad it arrived safely.

Marlene - the entire scheduled got discombobulated with the power out for two days!!! It seemed like we spent all that time driving around to find a restaurant that had electricity and was open for business. I promise we'll meet up next time.

I didn't get a chance to get up to Little Rock and check out Jerusalem's shop.

Life in Red Shoes - Just so you know, I took not ONE but TWO pair of red shoes on the trip with me.

Liberty Post - My camera does have a video function, but alas it was in the car. Talking about the video function, wait till tomorrow.

Chocolatechic - Festus!! Yes, there was a very nice hotel there. I think it was recently remodeled and it was really great. Got a good deal on hotels.com. It's kind of a smalll town but so close to St. Louis so culturally there's alot more available. We ate in a restaurant that had a outdoor patio complete with home made fire pits that looked very dangerous!!!

Heather - It was fun. Stuckey's are a throwback to the south in the 1950's. It's kind of a mini-mart filled with tourist stuff.

uppity kitty said...

Hope you stocked up on pecan logs, one never knows when that particular teeth aching opportunity will come round again. Viva Arkansas!

Cottage Rose said...

Looks like you had a fun trip. I love eating my way across the states. And I am sorry to say it shows. lol Love the photos, and I am glad your hubby bought another Ice cream bar. How sad it looked just laying there, alone melting. lol Love the post card you sent me, I was so excited to receive it in the mail. I loved it.
Have a great tomorrow.


Heidi said...

So glad that you made it home safley. Been looking forward to you posting again - you have to come see the boys on my blog. I hope you will laugh at it!

Kaye said...

Here I thought you went someplace all exotic, and all the time you were just down the road from me in North Little Rock! Wish I'd known, I'd have invited you to my house! Next time! Also, I grew up on a farm just a few miles outside of New Madrid, Missouri. Hey, is that Stuckey's just outside of Memphis at Marion, AR? We used to stop there when I was a kid everytime we went to Memphis for ANYTHING!

Karen said...

Glad you're back safe and sound!!!

That icecream looks so sad, melting their on the foot path. You should have taken a photo of The Farmer's face, it must have been a picture :-)

The postcard arrived... thankyou. I love getting things like that in the mail :-) I also thanked you properly on my blog ..

Louise said...

I've been to most of the places you mentioned. I spent most of my life in southwest Missouri, and the farmer is right about the trip to the top of the Arch. Plus, for the past many years, you have to be patient and REALLY WANT TO GO because of the wait time.

I've never heard of Festus, MO, though!

I'm glad he bought himself some more ice cream. The last time I did that was in high school (giant double dip cone my boyfriend bought me), and I actually CRIED! (Don't tell my daughters!)

Lylah said...

first time guest. love it! came way by melissa's inspired room. and so glad i did! looks like a fun place.