Monday, September 22, 2008

Oooooooooooooooooklahoma!

Maaaaaaaaaaaan, I can't believe I was in Oklahoma TWO WEEKS AGO and that it has taken me THIS long to get back to recapping my midwestern adventure. Sheesh.

Here's the bottom line:

I LOVED OKLAHOMA.

Sure, part of my lurrrrrrrve for Oklahoma was that it was totally freaking gorgeous when I was expecting it to be all dust-bowl-esque, but it was mainly great for the following reasons:

1. I was able to stop in and see an ollllllllllld family friend and visit her farm and meet her family and gawk at how L-O-V-E-L-Y it all was. I was so so so so so pleased to have the opportunity to reconnect with Carey because I hadn't seen her since I was a kid and she was a teenager and really, our families go waaaaaaaay back (as in, I wouldn't exist if our mothers hadn't met in England 40+ years ago) and I was thrilled for the chance to sit on her couch and look through old photo albums with her.

2. Oklahoma was the site of the "Elizabeth is stupid and couldn't figure out the toll road exit and was caught off guard when strangers stopped and offered her 50 cents so she could pay the toll" thing.

3. I inadvertently stopped at the WORLD'S LARGEST MCDONALD'S, which seemed appropriate given the fact that The World's Largest Ball of Twine and The World's Largest Ball of Stamps were also on my agenda for this road trip.

4. My hotel was probably the nicest hotel I'd ever stayed in and DEFINITELY had the most comfortable hotel bed in the world.

5. I had dinner at a restaurant listed in my book of 1,000 places to see before I die and had what was the best steak I'd ever tasted (until three days later when I had an even better one in Omaha).

6. Everybody was SO FREAKING NICE!

Proof that I was there:



Or at least half there, I guess.

Carey's husband's family has acres and acres of land in Oklahoma and I can't remember what kind of crops they have, but they also have CHICKENS!





If I hadn't been so late in arriving at the ol' homestead, I would have been able to see them using this thing to grade the eggs:



It was SO FREAKING HOT and I was MELTING like a snowman so the opportunity to get inside the egg cooler was welcome:



Carey's husband is really into birds and they keep a lot of them as pets, including guinea fowl:



and a whole bunch of fancy chickens:



and chickens with feathery feet!



And a horse too!



After a lovely visit with Carey, I headed off...



...into the sunset:



I took like 75 self portraits outside the restaurant where I had my delicious steak dinner and normally I'm a PRO at the self portrait, but I just couldn't get it together:



Y'all come back now:



I had some time to kill on Monday because I was spending Monday night in a BFE town in Kansas and I didn't want to get there TOO early because I knew there'd be a whole lot of nothing to do so I ended up going a bit south of Oklahoma City to Sulphur, OK:



It's the home town of my good buddy Dwight and I knew he'd get a kick out of it so I took a picture of the sign and sent it to him. He called me almost immediately and gave me a list of things I should do while I was in the area. Among them was a trip to Turner Falls, one of Dwight's childhood hangouts:



There was a long creek that led away from the falls with cabins and picnic tables scattered along the way. It looked like it would be a LOVELY way to spend the summer:



Dwight also said I needed to have fried catfish and hush puppies at this place, but BOOOOOOOOOOOOO for being closed on Mondays:



So I sulked away to get one of three lime-aids I drank while I was in Oklahoma.

Also while in Oklahoma --

My rental car was trying to tell me something:



And I played chicken with a semi:

video

Whew...the end.

Until I get up the energy to tell you about Kansas.

Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, Kansas...

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