When Best Laid Plans Go Slightly Awry

“I’m like a traveling comedy caravan. I’m here all week and twice on Sunday.” Spoken by Terry Sloan

Sometimes, when plans don’t work the way expected, humor can be the only saving grace. Terry was just that on our 4th day (3rd full day) keeping my spirits up as our plans didn’t exactly go as planned. We battled the elements (and probably the most difficult day yet) on our 290 mile journey yesterday into Shamrock Texas. Torrential rain forced a delay to the start of our morning by 2 1/2 hrs – which became a major issue with heat and sun later in the day. The rain gear was again needed for about the first leg out our trip from Tulsa to Oklahoma City (about 100 miles). We made a last minute decision to start Route 66 at that point rather than later to avoid the water sprays from passing trucks on the freeway but fortunately the journey into Oklahoma City was uneventful. A key stop when planning this trip was to visit the OKC Federal Building Memorial. Though I remember it vaguely as I was just a teen, I didn’t realize the true impact until seeing all the empty chairs – big and small- and standing in from of the chain link fence with personalized, weathered objects. Tears flowed as I touched the sun bleached teddy bears and memorabilia of someone’s loved one. Words can’t describe the sadness standing at the reflection pool and realizing the lives lost, the dreams unmet, the evil of humans.

After the OKC Memorial, our bellies needed filling and our minds needed a distraction from all the heartbreak. Off to Nic’s diner, featured on Guy Fieri Diners, Drive-ins and Dives for their famous onion burgers and trust us, it wasn’t all hype. Yum…  Back on Route 66 for a desolate but nerve wracking drive for Terry. In a car, altered payent poses no threat but on a bike, it can spell harm and disaster. Potholes, scary bridges and the heat drove us back to the Interstate under the blazing sun to put miles under our tires. Imagine gripping the throttle tight as the wind nudges the motorcycle ever so unkindly thanks to semis passing at 70 mph and now multiply that by 1300 miles. Terry fought with significant hand pain yesterday as he drove on in the unforgiving heat. Dehydration was setting in for both of us but more stops=more exposure to the elements. As Terry exclaimed last night, there have never been two happier people than us to ride into tiny Shamrock, Texas. Dinner at Big Vern’s Steakhouse- conveniently located in an old gas station proved just what these road weary bones needed for another day. A few pics in town and off to bed for a trip to Amarillo and Tucumcari.. and even better laundry day!

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