Enjoying the pretty weather on I-20 East.
On Highway 43, north of Longview, almost to Karnack: a defunct (except on weekends?) U.J.'s Funk-N-Roll.
Next to the Funk-N-Roll, a cinder block building that apparently once housed good times: the Banana Disco.
Some of the most fun mural art I've ever seen. All over the board, but with one running theme: African pride.
Fyffe’s Grocery Store, next to the park's entrance
No, we did not stay here. Thank goodness.
"Let's get this tent thing figured out!"
Going to get dinner at the Uncertain General Store & Grill!
Story: Brian and I saw this kid running 90 mph with his friends outside, back and forth from the woods to the water and back to a lodge. He was carrying a four-week-old kitten the whole time - with one hand. I went outside and (nicely, I promise) if I could hold his kitten. He ended up being a really sweet kid who loves his kitten and who simply didn't have any better sense than to give a barely-born kitten brain damage by taking it all over Uncertain with him at a 10-year-old kid's pace.
The kitten was fuh-REEKED out, but otherwise unharmed. Cute.
Brian wondering why his wife has to go and get into the locals' business like that.
Some of the best beans I've ever had. Next to my momma's.
We heard about an "Owl Prowl" at the park's CCC-built amphitheater at dusk.
Brian getting his hit of ESPN on the Blackberry before the presentation.
Brian and a local elderly couple on a Friday night date. They were neat.
It was really strange to see a super-wired Power Point presentation outside in a 75-year-old, woodsy park.
After the presentation, the park's education guy and the intern walked us to a spot for spying owls.
Waiting for dusk ....
... to turn into dark.
We heard and saw three young barred owls, with the help of a flashlight.
Later, in the tent ... we were reaping the brain lapse of forgetting BEDDING. Ground is hard, y'all.
But there was reading to be distracted by. For a while, anyway.
My view at 6 a.m. It couldn't have been more welcome. It was a laughably terrible night. Brian and I had switched from flopping all over the hard ground to cursing the loud partiers at 2 a.m. to attempting to sleep in the car. The car was a sub-compact and took both of us folding up like lawn chairs just to be somewhat horizontal. We ended up back in the tent.
The last time we visited the park, we tried to get a hold of the lady who runs the canoe rental shack, but no dice. Same this time around. We found out the night before from the intern that it's an honor system - just stick your money in a mailbox attached to the shack, and drag you a canoe into the water. THANKS FOR MAKING THAT CLEAR, CADDO.
Breakfast: Auntie Skinner's Riverboat Club in downtown Jefferson.
Story about the wet hair: The showers at the park were the most disgusting I've EVER seen. Both the men's and women's. Plus, I have a phobia of daddy long leg spiders (yes, I know they're harmless - be quiet), and there was at least one in each shower. I couldn't do it. So we drove back to the campsite and I had the most jerry-rigged, mostly-clothed bath ever at the water spigot there.
On our way home!
I saw a creepy, mysterious little dirt road I asked Brian to take us down.
The road was very 'Deliverance,' like I'd hoped.
But it was so narrow that poor Brian had to drive backwards for 10 minutes to get us back to the main road. Whoops!
Some severe rain, I'm telling you.
My read of choice for the trip.
Last stop: Canton, Texas! A yummy farmer's market. I bought honey and strawberry preserves.
When I was paying for my honey and jam, a jolly, overall-ed, toothless grandpa who ran the stand said, "Honey if you eat all this, you GON TURN SWEET! HAHAHAHA!!" and just cracked himself up to no end. Adorable.
Speaking of sweet!!!!
Had to get my third milkshake of the trip for the last stretch home: a Blue Bell pecan pralines & cream job from the famous Dairy Palace in Canton. MMMMM!!