“It was an Elan. A delightful little thing famously made of Kleenex and unicorn farts.” ~ Sam Smith
DAY FOUR – The forecast for rain was wrong thankfully. I did put the top up and tucked everything away so as to keep things as dry as possible so it was a nice surprise to find an overcast but dry day when I looked out at 6:30 am. Knowing that rain was forecast throughout the day, I left the top up and it never rained all day. The respite from the wind was welcome though. With earplugs it was almost serene at 65-68 mph.
Since I was in eastern Mississippi for the night it was only about an hour to Alabama and the best part was how I went around the northeast side of Columbus, MS on some really nice winding parkway type roads thus avoiding all the stoplights and truck traffic on the main route. As I noted in my planning post about day four in leg one, “The only real concern I have with my little Elan is the stop and crawl of city traffic. This day looks ominous.” My worries were well founded.
I sailed around Tuscaloosa on the perimeter road, US 82, without any real trouble and after outsmarting Columbus and zipping through Tuscaloosa, I was feeling pretty smug. You know what happens next, right?
The first test of my patience was Montgomery, and because I made a navigation mistake, again, by continuing straight when I should have turned, I found myself on the Alabama River Parkway. It was beautiful and serene until I crossed the Alabama River Toll Bridge and found myself way northeast of town. I get directions from a guy who pointed me to the east ring road called US 231. It had stop lights every quarter mile each with a long turn arrow and all of them red. Drivers looking for the coffee kiosk or the muffler shop poked and meandered while the temp went up and the driver got hotter by the minute. It was horrible. The traffic engineers are still employed I assume though if I were boss, they would be looking for work cleaning fish!
Then the scene repeated not only in Dothan, but also in Troy which I had never even contemplated. If this sounds as though I had a horrible day, I’m sorry. These spells were bad but most of the day was smooth roads and light traffic with the overcast keeping it pretty comfortable even with the top on. It was a good day, but rain is again in the forecast for tonight and tomorrow and this time I can see it coming!
Impressions from the fourth day:
• I got an early start which worked well. I was ahead of the school/work traffic until after Columbus so it was easy driving and very pretty.
• Alabama has hills!! It feels like a southern version of Iowa as I was always going up or down in complete contrast to Mississippi flatness. Also there is a nice variety of trees and other vegetation.
• Why does an elephant seem to be without ivory in central Alabama? It’s Tuscaloosa.
• I am already in Florida, but, like Kansas, it is a long, long state and I will be in it for four days!
Hi, I’m Ross and I’m a tripoholic. I love driving especially in my old cars and then writing about the adventure that always follows. I’m old enough to know better but that doesn’t stop me. If you like stories of the road, every word true no matter how far fetched it may seem, then grab a beer or a cup of coffee and join me!
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