637 miles (!)
Disclaimer: Huge travel day – therefore this blog post will be slightly short and slightly boring.
Rich was up early in order to get in a bike ride before we hit the road. He left before it was even light outside. I got up around 7:00 and made my way to the fitness center for a short workout. When Rich finally arrived back at the room it was already 8:30. It seems that he did, indeed take off in darkness and did not have his bike light. He had to stop at a gas station and wait for daylight to continue his ride. (he also got a little lost so was later than anticipated). He says the ride was nice and he took a couple of nature shots.
(Note: you can double click on any picture in this blog to make it larger)
We ate a quick breakfast at the hotel and packed up for our journey to Oklahoma City. We started out zooming along the interstate (I-40), but soon decided that we would rather take backroads. We hopped off the highway at Amarillo, TX and looked around for an interesting place to eat lunch. No luck. We drove around a little while and finally decided to cash it in an eat at IHOP. Oh well, they can’t all be gourmet meals. . . and we actually did enjoy it.
After lunch we headed off on some back highways through Texas and then Oklahoma. Mandy (our gps) was quite exasperated with us since we left her on (without sound), but totally ignored all of her directions. The scenery was nice, but it all started to look the same. When we crossed from the Texas border into Oklahoma I was startled to see how different the two states look.
We finally made our way to the outskirts of Oklahoma City . I had booked a hotel in the Bricktown district of the city on Priceline and got a smokin’ deal. The Bricktown area is downtown and looked like a great place to walk around with lots of restaurants and bars. The only problem now was that we were getting in much later than we had anticipated and we weren’t even sure if we would find any restaurants open.
I plugged the address of the hotel into Mandy and we decided to let her bring us in. Something started to feel a little strange when we blew through all exits to downtown and seemed to head out of town. When we realized that we were now in Edmond, OK and NOT in Oklahoma City, I decided to check Mandy. The address I had put in was on North Broadway OK City. The address she was leading us to was SOUTH Broadway in Edmond OK!!! Very, very strange. We decided that it was Mandy’s way of getting back at us for putting a cork in her all day.
After much juking and jiving we backtracked and found the hotel. The girl at the desk assured us that we could still find food in Bricktown (it was now 9:30) and we headed out on foot. We stopped at Brix – a sports bar – perfect. It was even more perfect when we spied the largest tv we had ever seen with Monday Night Football on. Rich was in heaven. The crowd was into the game between the Saints and the 49ers and the atmosphere was fun.
We had a good time, good food and then walked a little bit more around Bricktown. It looks like a neat area that we might like to explore another time. But tonight is late and we have another looong drive day tomorrow to get to Memphis.
Today’s dilema is an ongoing discussion. Do we plan/reserve our hotels in advance and then have a situation like today where we really didn’t want to drive that far, couldn’t find the place, etc? The upside is that with research we can stay in an interesting part of town and/or nearby a great restaurant and we can possibly get a great rate on Priceline. Or do we “wing” it and risk not finding a room or being stuck in a Motel 6 at 5pm with nothing around it for entertainment? The upside is, of course, that the travel is then completely spontaneous. (I wonder if you have figured out how Rich and I think. . .?) I will leave you, our faithful readers, to decide which side of the fence you fall on. Please vote with your comments.