Sunday, July 18, 2010

In theater

We are at a Wal-Mart in Huntsville, Alabama (map). We are now just eight hours' drive from either the gulf or the Atlantic seaboard and could be more or less anywhere in hurricane territory within a day and a half, effectively putting us "in theater," as they say in the military, for the season. The season is off to a slow start, with the map still clear this morning save for a broad area of low pressure east of the Leewards that has only a small chance of cyclonic development.

Friday evening found us at the home of good friends Russ and Pat, in Christiana, just a short drive from our previous stop in Madison. I say "short" in terms of miles; it took us more than two hours to traverse the 70 miles or so on the freeway, because Vice President Biden was apparently in Nashville on Friday, and authorities closed the freeways in all directions for a brief period to accommodate his movement. Having once hosted a vice presidential visit myself, I know what a colossal PITA this is for law enforcement and the entire community. We were in no rush, but the truckers were, well, swearing like truckers about it.

Russ and Pat took us out for a nice dinner at the Five Senses restaurant in nearby Murfreesboro, and then we enjoyed a swim in their pool. The pool felt rather luxurious in this weather, just a bit warmer than ambient in the late evening, and cooler than ambient when we returned yesterday afternoon for a quick pre-departure dip. It was great catching up with them and seeing the progress he's made on his Kenworth T2000 truck and Teton fifth wheel. We always enjoy visiting, and it was very generous of them to lend us their 30-amp power outlet during our stay.

Yesterday afternoon we had a very pleasant drive down US-231 to Huntsville. Our plan had been to proceed directly to Monte Sano state park just east of the city, where we'd settle in for a few days with a nice fat power outlet while we visit Huntsville. We knew, though, that the park was mostly full for the weekend, and that we'd have to hunt around for a space with a shot through the trees to the satellite. As we rolled into Huntsville at 6pm or so, the outside temperature had dropped to a mostly tolerable 85°, and we decided to come here instead for a night. That will give us a much better selection of sites this afternoon, when most of the weekenders have left, saved us $21 for the night, and let us wander across the street to dinner at Carrabas in the Parkway City Mall.

After dinner we strolled the mall, getting 12-minute massages at one of those Asian sit-up massage booths, and poking our noses into stores full of stuff no one needs. Try as we might, we could not find a single item to buy at the mall, although we were entertained by these two girls paying $2 to be in a simulated hurricane, especially given why we are in Alabama. By the time we walked back across the street, the outside temperature was quite pleasant, and it was even reasonable aboard the bus, whose windows and vents we had opened before we left.

It's warmer now, and we just popped an air conditioner back on, but we should have enough battery to carry us until we leave here in half an hour or so. We don't want to get to the park too early, or some of today's checkouts will not yet have left.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Share your comments on this post! We currently allow anyone to comment without registering. If you choose to use the "anonymous" option, please add your name or nickname to the bottom of your comment, within the main comment box. Getting feedback signed simply "anonymous" is kind of like having strangers shout things at us on the street: a bit disconcerting. Thanks!