Tango, I have decided, does not really like the constant wind of the Western plains. My theory is that it simply overwhelms his senses, which, as we know, are so much more acute than our own. Who knows what multitude of odors are carried by a constant 15-30 mph wind. Too much to process. His hearing is excellent but the wind just deafens hims, kind of like a constantly blowing hair dryer. So, he jumps out of the van, does his job and looks at me woefully when I try to encourage him to walk with me. But he is enjoying the trip and jumps around like a puppy sometimes, mainly in the hotel rooms. There is a major weather front moving through tomorrow and tomorrow night. Snow is forecast! Perhaps when that is event is over things will quiet down for Tango.
One of my favorite TV series is “Saving Grace.” (It originally aired on TNT 2007-2010 and is now available on Netflix.) Holly Hunter plays an Oklahoma City detective named Grace who is visited by Earl, a lovable angel. Grace is a nice twist on the prostitute with a heart of gold. She sleeps around, drinks too much, and is a wicked jokester but she’s also ethical and a good cop. Continue reading “On the Road – Day 4”→
Today Tango and I crossed the states of Alabama and Mississippi, stopping in Vicksburg on the banks of the Mississippi River.
Vicksburg is notable for being the spot where the first Coca Cola was bottled in 1894. It was also the site of one of the critical battles of the American Civil War. In 1863, from May 18th until July 4th, the Union forces laid siege on Vicksburg. The armies totaled 110,000 men–more than twice the current population of Vicksburg. Causalities were more than 37,000–a number that does not include the civilians of Vicksburg who were trapped along with the Confederate soldiers.
Vicksburg’s strategic place along the Mississippi made it a “must win” for the Union. Abraham Lincoln declared Vicksburg “the Key” to winning the Civil War.
Today the land on which the Yanks and the Rebels squared off against one another is preserved as a National Park. With close to 150 years of recovery, the landscape no longer resembles the war-ravaged land of 1863. Monuments grace the 1,800 acres and the Park Service clearly has its hands full keeping the grass trimmed back. You can hardly believe there was ever the carnage and suffering that is depicted in the exhibits.
Why visit such a place, you might ask? Why care about a war that is long gone and that many college students can’t even tell you who won (it was the Union)? It has to do with perspective, I think. There are many who feel these are the worst of times in the U.S. But there was a time in this country when we set about to slaughter one another and did a darn good job of it. Estimates are that 620,000 people died in the Civil War, which was only four years long. Do the math…155,000 a year, 12,917 a month! Add to that the mammoth destruction of property in the South. It was a horrific time….
Yet today soft green grasses of spring wave peacefully on the hillsides. The trees have that rich color of new growth and birds are everywhere collecting the makings of their springtime nests. Butterflies flitter about and dozens of people, like me, stopped by to pay their respects to this hallowed ground. Things may be a little tough right now but let us hope we never return to the horror that was the American Civil War. ❖
Cue the Willie Nelson music…Tango and I are on the road again. We are headed out on our second transcontinental trip, from East Coast to West with a few stops along the way.
Today we finally made it out of Florida after driving for close to eight hours. Florida is a long state, we all know that. But it is also a wide state when you turn west on I-10 and head towards Alabama. We arrived in Daphne, a bit east of Mobile and are settled in for the night.
For the next few days we will continue west with a few stops on the way. We need to be in Pueblo, Colorado by Friday…plenty of time before then for some fun and a few pictures with my new Selfie Stick. Stay tuned.