Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Close of the Show, and the ride home.

Things here have been hectic, so I didn't get to write more about the wing ding convention until now...

Basically all we had left was the Saturday night final dinner. It was held in the Ice Arena that was part of the convention center there in Huntsville, Alabama...  It is a fairly new facility and hold lots of people....   The web site says 10,000 but that would be all of the arena seating for an event including the floor...

We were having a sit down banquet, so I have no idea how many folks were there, but I would guess somewhere around a 1500  sitting at round 10 person banquet tables...  I know the tickets were limited, and had to be purchased in advance...  Several folks said they couldn't get tickets..

It was a barbecue and was as good a rendition as could be expected from chafing dishes.  We all lined up in the hallways of the convention hall, and it was somewhat overwhelming as the line seemed several blocks long...  We only came a half hour before the event, and found ourselves way at the back of the line...

But when the doors opened, it went really quickly..  They had about 10 serving lines, but as luck would have it, since we were at the back of the line, most of the food had already been eaten....  I managed to get a couple of rolls and a gob of pulled pork with a really small ear of corn...  The salad was completely gone as were most of the condiments...

They were selling raffle tickets for the drawing....   Products were donated by JM headsets that were drawn randomly from a big barrel...  Some of the items were really pricey give aways... The money from the tickets was donated to a charity.

This picture was inside the arena as I waited to go thru the food line...  There was live entertainment that was overwhelmingly loud...  My cell phone doesn't do a good job with my very shaky arms holding it high above my head, so the focus is quite soft.

And with that, the party was over....   The vendors were open on Sunday, but we were out of there..

We rode from Huntsville across Northern Alabama and then up into Tennessee..  It was overly hot that afternoon, so we stopped often for drinks and air conditioning.  We stuck mostly to back two lane roads.  Having a sit down lunch at Chili's in Florence, Alabama...  From there we rode to  Savannah, Tennessee, and then to Dyersburg, Tennessee...   Stopping about 4:30 in the afternoon sun I was really glad to get off of the trike...   The heat index had to be in the 110 area... Sunday was 225 miles.

We again stopped at another Hampton Inn, but this one was an older property that was converted from a different motel...  It was more of a Motel format with interior doors..  The heat and humidity was causing low voltage in the electrical grid there in town, and we couldn't get our computer and cell phone devices to charge..  I had a meter in my top case and measured the voltage at barely 100 volts...  But as the night pressed on the ACs came back to full power and our items finally charged..

We were up at 5 on Monday, labor day...  Rolling by 6:30, we were out to beat the heat of the day..  Crossing the Mississippi river at about daybreak we headed off into rural Missouri on the small lettered roads...  We were in the boot heal and ran into several closed highways... We weren't really lost because we were heading North and West but you just couldn't get there from here..   Somehow we ended up in Poplar Bluff....  From there US 60 brought us across southern Missouri...

There is quite a windy road from Mountain Grove thru the forest to Lebanon, Mo.   This is somewhat like the dragon in Deals Gap, North Carolina..  It isn't labeled as a motorcycle run as it goes thru Ft Leonard Wood Forrest, but seems to have just as many curves and hills..  Its more like 40 miles long not 11 like the dragon... We zoomed right thru this stretch  (fun)..  Never seeing too many cars or police anywhere...  I think there was one gas station and it was a ma and pa gravel drive place..  We had filled back at the Wal Mart in Mountain Grove..

Of course, since we had enjoyed wonderful sunny weather up to this point, the clouds threatened all the way to Lebanon...  And stopping at a Wendy's in Lebanon for a quick coffee and bathroom, gave the storm time to catch us... So now it was rain suits for the rest of the ride into Lake Ozark...

Lake Ozark, meant we could stop at the lake cabin and save a night of Motel...  Also the restaurants are now familiar and it seems like home...  Monday was 310 miles.

On Tuesday it was on home after the morning pancake inn breakfast...  And the rains never stopped until we were withing sight of KC...  Another 160 miles.  8 days on the road!   The hot days were taxing with exhaustion and we walked a million miles in the show...   All and all another adventure.

Retired Rod


  1. Glad you didn't get heat stroke out there. I bet it was a lot of fun though. I can just picture you racing through that windy road keeping an eye out for cops. Glad you made it home without getting stopped.

  2. My goodness, what a trip! Driving a car will seem strange after so many miles. On my last trip across oountry I mostly stayed at Mom & Pop style motels, and find they are much better (to me) than the big buildings with exterior doors and long hallways. I almost always got great wifi, the rooms were comfortable and up to date in every way. I'd rather support a person or family than a big chain.

  3. That trip made me tired, time for a rest. Sounds like you had a good time though.

  4. Sounds like you had a great adventure, Memories. Good for you!


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