Boy do I have a lot to fill you in on! I love snuggling down to write a blog post. It’s like sitting down to a cup of coffee or whatever your favorite indulgence is, as you greet the new day. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy sharing our adventures with you. If so, send a shout out by posting a comment.
First things first, we’re no longer in Missouri. We pulled out of Table Rock Lake State Park on Wednesday. I have to admit I was feeling pretty sentimental about leaving. I went down to the lake with Loki on our last night there. The calm and stillness on the lake about took my breath away. I was sad that we hadn’t taken the opportunity to catch more sunsets. We had planned to but alas, time slipped away from us.
Our first destination as we headed down the highway was the World’s Largest McDonald’s. At least that’s their claim to fame. You see where I’m heading with this, right? It’s located in Vinita, Oklahoma and I’m here to tell you, DON’T BOTHER!
We were expecting this large structure dedicated to McDonald’s and McDonald’s alone, n.o.p.e. It seems that when they refer to the “World’s Largest’ they mean simply McDonald’s owns the building. This happens to be the largest square foot building McDonald’s owns.
When you walk inside, there’s a snack/gift shop with no McDonald’s memorabilia whatsoever. It’s more like a 7-11 or a Wawa. Then you go upstairs and there’s a Subway sandwich shop at one end, another gift shop with mainly Route 66 memorabilia and a shockingly small McDonald’s. Look at that little McDonald’s over there in the picture. Do you see it yet? Just kidding.
The kids ordered McDonald’s and I headed over to Subway. I was shaking my head the whole way. After our belly’s were full and our bubbles bursted, we headed back down 44 West. Our destination, Chandler, Oklahoma.
Okay, okay, you may be wondering what in the world all this rambling has to do with escaped prisoners?! We were motoring along and came upon this sign,
Do not pick up hitchhikers. They may be escaped prisoners.
Huh?!?! Are they serious? Is this somebody’s idea of a joke? It was a true, legitimate highway sign. I wish I could have snapped a picture for you.
Even if there’s a prison nearby, do they have that little control over their prison population? Do they break out in such frequency that they need to warn the general public heading down 44 West? And just in case you’re wondering, yes, we did see a prisoner, um, I mean hitchhiker, about 100 miles down the road. Do you see the hysteria the sign is creating. I will leave that comment right there.
We arrived into Bell Cow Lake Campground late afternoon and looked around for a site. We had a lot of fuss trying to find a site that wasn’t reserved and was flat enough for the jacks to level us. The policy here is no reservations, first come, first serve. That is, unless you’re reserving five or more campsites. What can I say, it’s a county run campsite. But hey, the rates are $15/night. I’m not complaining.
It seems someone is reserving at least 15 for Friday and Saturday. And guess what? They’re all the best, most level sites. We found out today that Bell Cow Lake Campground also has two more sites, Camp A and B. We’re in Camp C, the equestrian one. Had we known that, we would have camped over in the other section.
Regardless, we collectively decided that there’s really not that much here for us to do. There’s a so-so swimming lake but no playground and not much to see in Chandler. The lake is interesting. There are all these dead trees sticking up out of the water. I believe it has something to do with drought. As the lake level recedes, it’s exposing all these old dead trees that have been hidden. I have no other explanation. Makes for good pictures during the Halloween season though.
I attempted to change our reservations for our next destination to arrive in Friday instead of Monday. The earliest they could accommodate us was Sunday.
So, what to do, what to do? We’re going to move an hour and a half further west to the next county campground, Lake El Reno RV Park. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that we’ll snatch a site. That will also put us closer to Amarillo. So with all the logistics ironed out, what have we been up to?
We did quite a bit with our one little day. It rained all day here so we went out and about. We headed to the Chandler Route 66 Interpretive Center. It’s housed in the old armory building, which is really cool looking all on its own! I wish we’d had more time to see all the videos they had set-up but we were all pretty hungry. And when the kids get hungry, they get what we coin, “hangry”, that would be hungry and angry!
The center had old theater seats set-up, hotel beds (covered in plastic), a diner scene and real vintage seats out of classic cars. Each of these displays was a ‘center’ if you will with a different video theme you could watch. You could sit in the classic car seats (three different sections of different styles), you could lie down on the beds, sit in the theater seats, etc, and watch various videos.
So what do you do after you’ve visited the Route 66 Interpretive Center? Why, you head on over to the strip! It was really cool seeing how well they’ve preserved a lot of the buildings. We’ve been seeing Route 66 running parallel to the highway here and there. But this was the first time we actually drove down it.
We were in search of dinner and it was a toss-up between Boom-a-rang Diner and Giorgio’s Pizzeria. The majority ruled in favor of Giorgio’s Pizzeria. It was decent pizza considering I haven’t had any for a while.
This Route 66 experience was definitely a sampling of things to come. I’m sure we’ll be seeing a lot more of this iconic landmark in the months ahead. But what I’m really excited about is our destination in Amarillo, Texas. Have I shared it with you yet? I might have, if you’ve been following along and paying attention ;-). If not, you’ll have to wait and see.
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