Day Four by Dave Schultheis
Thursday, July 31, 2003 - Nocona, Texas
What a place this was! It was near enough to the (two-lane) highway to hear all the traffic rolling by, the overhead fan in the room was noisy, the huge pillows were uncomfortable, and the crickets chirped all night long. Somehow I managed to get some sleep.
When the morning light poured through the curtains and into the room about 7:30 a.m., I got up and dressed, packed and loaded.
I checked out and left at 8:10 a.m. Central Time, and it was 90 degrees as I turned east on U.S. 82. It wasn't far to St. Jo, then Muenster, a quaint little German town, which had a very nice motel that I'll shoot for next time, then Gainesville, Whitesboro, and the relatively big city of Sherman, and then another 11 miles to Bells, where I stopped for fuel at 9:45 a.m. at a Phillips 66 Station.
It was 85 degrees as I found a shady spot and called my uncle to tell him I was on the way and would be there in a few hours. He said they would be out for a medical appointment, and reminded me how to get into the house in their absence.
I turned south on U.S. Highway 69 and rode through Whitewright, Trenton, Leonard (where I saw _both_ police cars), Celeste, Greenville, Lone Oak, Point, and Emory. Around here I stopped to take pictures of a couple of mailboxes with painted flames, then in Alba I stopped for some photos of white Botts dots at the side of the highway, which didn't make sense at the time, but which later turned out to be "no parking" areas. That's funny because I have a great picture of the Road King parked right in the middle of a circle of dots.
Near Mineola, I stopped at KM00, 99.9 FM, right alongside the road, for some pictures of their cow-themed signs in front. The on-air personality saw me through the window and came out to say, "come on in," so I did, and she gave me a very quick look at the station, and had someone get me a bumper sticker and a KM00 tee-shirt (!) before she had to get back on the air. It was a nice (air-conditioned) taste of Texas hospitality!
I continued south on U.S. 69, through Mineola and into Lindale at 12:18 p.m., where a sign on a building said it was 87 degrees, but my more accurate thermometer said it was 92 degrees, not that I could tell the difference.
After a quick stop at the Dairy Queen for something cold to go, I took a couple of secondary roads and arrived at my uncle and aunt's house, just a few miles from downtown, at 12:40 p.m., where it was 92 degrees. I took a couple pictures of their patriotic mailbox and the front of their property, then parked, opened the garage door and unloaded some of my stuff.
I was greeted/welcomed by their doggies, then we all went into the house, where it was nice and cool. I put my stuff in the guest room, turned the ceiling fan to "medium," then sat down to rest in the family room. I could turn on the television set but couldn't figure out the remote controls, so I could not access the satellite channels. But the comfortable chair and the nice cool house were the most important things.
In a little while my uncle and aunt called and said they were on their way back. In due time they did get back, and we spent the afternoon catching up with all the goings on throughout the family, and a little about my trip, and sitting in the comfortable chairs.
Later they took me to one of the premier family restaurants in Lindale, Petty's Steak and Catfish, right on U.S. 69. I had a hamburger steak, salad and baked potato. The place was full of happy customers, mostly families, and outdoors the cicadas could be heard making that noise that they make.
After dinner we went back to their home and plopped down in front of the television set for more entertainment. I took a shower and went to bed sometime after 10:00 p.m.
Miles for the day = 192. I know, kinda wimpy. Miles for the trip = 1863.
Tomorrow: a 10,000 mile service, lounging around the house, and a Bodacious barbeque.