The second day of the journey homeward from Edwardsville and the Miles of Possibilities Conference started under grey skies in Jefferson City, Missouri. Our destination was Guthrie, Oklahoma but there were a few stops to make along the way.
Our morning commute from Jefferson City.
The first of these was in the picturesque wide spot in the road that is High Point, Missouri. More on the town and reasons for stopping in future posts but this was related to some ongoing research pertaining to a bit of western history.
As the morning wasn’t exactly picture perfect (the fog was just a bit thick) we abandoned that prospect. Instead we dodged a few horse drawn buggies on the highway, and people driving with their lights off, and headed straight for some warm coffee and an ever so brief visit with our friends Bob and Robin at the Water’s Edge Motel on the Lake of the Ozarks. During late spring, summer, or early fall, if the opportunity presents itself, I highly recommend a stay at this delightful little lakeside jewel.
Bob and Ramona Lehman, proprietors of the Munger Moss Motel for more than forty years.
Next we paid a surprise visit to Bob and Ramona at the Munger Moss Motel. Not that we ever need an excuse to visit but there was the need to deliver another Kingman promotional package. As often happens on a Route 66 odyssey, our visit just happen to coincide with Penny Black and her companion checking out. They had been at the conference and related Route 66 events in Edwardsville and were homeward bound for California.
As with our stop at Bob and Robin’s, the visit at the Munger Moss Ramona’s was all to brief and soon we were back on the road. The next stop, aside from the continuing impression of a jack in the box as we popped in and out of the car photographs, was Springfield.
An attempt to photograph sites in Springfield’s historic district were thwarted by maddening construction that necessitated ludicrous detours (two lanes of traffic down and alley!) and the loss of time that we didn’t have to spare. So we grabbed a less than memorable lunch well worn old diner and took the road again.
It became rather obvious that it was going to be another late arrival at the hotel as the countdown to sunset marked by lengthening shadows commenced on the courthouse square in Carthage. On the square we had another of those coincidental encounters, this time with Tommy and Glenda Pike of the Route 66 Association of Missouri who just happened to be in town as part of their car clubs cruise to Red Oak II.
Even though there was a great deal to talk about, our visit was abbreviated resultant of the fact that sunset was imminent and yet we still had a long drive ahead of us. Reluctantly we put wheels on the interstate and headed west a steady clip.
Even with a tight schedule a road trip can be exciting, enjoyable and memorable, provided an individual is willing to try something different, is open to a bit of adventure regardless of the later hour, and is willing to abandon the time table on occasion. In this instance the something different led to abandoning any pretense of a schedule and a wonderful little discovery.
It was well past supper time and the stomach was beginning to do a bit more than growl as we rolled through the dark night. So, in every hamlet that we cruised through there was a search for food. As we had not reached the point of desperation, the standard fast food fare was out of the question. Then, in Cushing, Oklahoma, we discovered Naifeh’s Deli and Grill.
What a delightful surprise! Traditional burgers, southwest burgers, patty melts, onion burgers, and traditional burgers with a twist (tobouly, hummus, and provolone cheese) teased the taste buds as I perused the menu before settling on a Mediterranean turkey sandwich; shaved turkey, tabouly, black olives, red onion, sliced pepperoncini, feta cheese and lemon oil dressing on a toasted honey wheat hoagie.
The service was beyond horrible, almost forty minutes for a sandwich. This frustration also had a silver lining, we met Brianna Toll.
This charming young lady was working the late shift. It was her first job. After serving us with an embarrassed look in her eye, she retreated to the kitchen. A few minutes latter she returned, apologized for misplacing our order, and offered to buy desert on her dime. That is honest service, that is a young lady with a promising future.
We arrived in Guthrie shortly before the witching hour, settled in for the night, and slept the night away with turkey and tobouly inspired dreams dancing in my head.