In daylight we got to fully check out our hotel which was very nice. It’s too bad we weren’t going to be staying there longer. We headed out to Denny’s and this time I opted for a healthier breakfast; egg whites, spinach, fruit and an english muffin.
We decided at breakfast to drive as far as we possibly could. The great optimism was to go from St. Louis to Albuquerque, which was 1000 miles and 16 hours of driving. We hit the road and journeyed through Missouri. Having done two road trips now, Missouri takes the cake on weird bill boards, and their proliferation of Adult Superstores. I was happy to see the lack of microsurgical vasectomy reversals, child pornography destroys (which it does) and this time only a few Jesus Saves billboards.
The new Missouri billboard I liked had two guys in scrubs on it, and it said, “Man Up!” with the subheadline of “Become a Healthcare Professional Today.” At least it’s got a positive message. We finally made it out of Missouri and off to Oklahoma.
It can be summed up with two words, hot and no shade. As we progressed through Oklahoma we started having problems with the air conditioning in the Civic. Making that situation even worse was that we were carrying the cats. We pulled over at a rest area/gas station to check on things.
The make shift cap we had put on the coolant resevoir had blown off and our coolant was all leaving the radiator. In the 98ºF and humid and we were working under the hood. We came up with a better solution this time, a prescription bottle cap fit perfectly and with a lot of duct tape. It did the job perfectly. We were back on the road with A/C and an engine temperature gauge staying in normal areas.
Oklahoma City split us up, Craig and I ended up stopping at a Starbucks. It was so nice to be back to something familiar and not a truck stop. We ordered our coffees and joked around with the barista who was from Jersey! He agreed that the toll system was insane around the city, even after 12 years of living there.
After our nice detour, we were back and heading to Amarillo. I booked our hotel at the Staybridge Suites and we drove and drove. Western Oklahoma was really quite beautiful. Amazing, amazing levels of flat vistas. So surreal coming from the northeast where there is rarely a road that goes more than a few miles before hitting a hill.
As the sun set the landscape got very picturesque. I wanted to take so many photos of trees that were either tornado damaged or ones that were just blown sideways. The pink, blue and purple sunset was such an amazing backdrop. The farther west we got, we started coming across large wind farms. A really amazing site to see them go for acres and acres.
Texas did not dissapoint, we stopped at a rest stop with a huge building and tribute to the Lone Star state. It was a very dark drive to Amarillo with speckled strobe lights of farms and equipment along the horizon.
Our hotel was beautiful and like a small studio apartment inside. Our timing was impeccable though, the elevator had just broken and we were on the fourth floor. The hotel had staff helping people bring their luggage and items up 4 flights of stairs. We tipped generously for their help.
We managed to cover 750 miles and roughly 11 hours of driving.