Camping by the Tenn-Tom waterway was a really great experience - until about 5:00 am. I heard what sounded like a train off in the distance, but it kept getting louder, and LOUDER – until I thought it was going to come through the tent. Suddenly, it was like an alien spaceship was about to beam us up. Our whole world was suddenly lit up, Only then did I realize it was a tugboat pushing barges up the river, and had swept us with a very powerful spotlight. Back to sleep, only to be awakened by another at 5:30. The next one didn’t show up until about 9, but this time the kids were all awake – or at least up – to see it.
We packed up and headed back to Aliceville hoping to find some local restaurant for breakfast. Lindsay rode with me in the Model A, and Sara rode in the van with J.C., Nick and the grandkids. I think this may have been the first, on the road experience for Lindsay in one of our old vehicles. The only place open that served breakfast was Jacks, breaking, by necessity our rule against fast food.
While we were finishing up breakfast, a man walked up and asked about the Model A. After the usual dialog, he then asked if I would be interested in a ‘48 Chevrolet four door sedan. I told him that I wouldn’t, but I might be able to help him find someone who would be. So when we finished breakfast, saw the kids and grandkids off, we made our way the few blocks to his house. He said that he had not started the car in a couple of years now, but it looks pretty complete. If you are interested, send me a comment and I will supply photos and his name and phone number.
We drove southeast toward Demopolis, then near Forkland, I saw what appeared to be replica Burma-Shave signs:
IF YOU DRIVE YOUR CAR
WHILE YOU ARE DRUNK
CARRY A COFFIN
IN YOUR TRUNK
Then, in the next field, a local farmer had all sorts of yard art, including a Tin Man that must have been 60 feet tall!
We wanted to make it to Gilbertown, Alabama, to visit some folks we had met a few years back (more on them later) Sara had found a listing for a bed & breakfast in Butler, but when she called, they had no vacancies. When asked if there were any other lodging in town, the man stated that the only hotel in town was usually full of “social workers” on the weekend, and that he would definitely not recommend it for taking a family. It took a while for us to figure out just who the social workers were, and then only after we saw the motel and guessed that it rented by the hour!
The GPS listed a hunting lodge in Gilbertown, so we called. The owner said he had a cabin available and it was kind of like a bed & breakfast – only for hunters. He then told us the current score on the Alabama game, and that he would turn on the air conditioner and the TV in the lounge.
When we arrived, we were immediately surrounded by at least a dozen yipping little dogs, and one very large Boxer mix. When I went to find the owner, the small dogs soon lost interest and disappeared. But Duke, as Sara named him, ( we later found out his name is Tip) stayed with us. (he is laying outside our door now).
The owner, Jake, showed up on an ATV and showed us to our cabin, a very nice, one bedroom with a large bath. While Sara unpacked and checked e-mail, I wandered over to the lounge to watch the last half of the game. The “lounge” was about the size of a gymnasium, its walls covered with trophy size bucks, boars and turkeys. There were plenty of coyotes, bobcats, weasels and beavers everywhere. After the game, as I walked back to our cabin, I had to dispatch a rattlesnake that was between me and my destination. Unfortunately it just wasn't trophy size.
Today’s mileage: 139.7 (yea! The GPS is back)