Day 227: Stars & stripes Vs McDonalds

1 March 2011

Location: Birmingham to Bryson

High point: Meeting the Hoover Fire Department and being escorted out of town

Low point: Crossing a time zone and losing an hour on a drive that was already way too long

No point: Being in a rush

Pen point: Whilst purchasing cab snacks we picked up a copy of Lock Up Magazine which features the latest crims that have been thrown in the can, it’s a riveting read I can assure you, and great for our new game ‘guess the crim crime’.

After spending two nights sleeping in a hurricane trailer in New Orleans it was like all our Christmases had come at once waking up at the Wynfrey in Birmingham, anyone would have thought we’d never seen a duvet or fresh towels before.  The General Manager Andy Peters had kindly arranged for the local fire department to meet us at the hotel with their rig.  Why do they always send the biggest fire trucks that make Martha look like a midget and why do people in the US describe her as cute, she might be small but she’s perfectly formed.  The fire fighters weren’t there long before they had to head off on a shout.  In the meantime we happened to mention we needed diesel, the next thing we know we’re following Fire Inspector Richard Linn to Hoover Fire Station where they kindly donated a tank of fuel.  Thank you guys, we weren’t even hinting!  We couldn’t leave without obligatory photos with the life size cougar (also known as a bobcat or mountain lion) that had been ‘borrowed’ from one of the other fire fighter’s gardens.  If you look at the pictures it will hopefully make more sense…

Its hard to know what to write about when you pretty much spend all day in a big red truck.  Today was another long day on the road and a hard day for the nav as key roads had been closed off just to confuse us.  Veteran James Morrow came in for a lot of obligatory ‘nav bashing’ as he tried to redeem himself from directing us in a circle when leaving Birmingham, he couldn’t really come back from that to be fair.  To keep the excitement levels up in the cab we counted the number of McDonalds restaurants and huge US flags we saw on the road.  The yanks love their flags, they’re everywhere.  There was much debate around whether certain flags met the criteria to be included in the count, i.e. were they big enough.  What can I say, you run out of chat spending over 10 hours a day in the back of the cab…

Luckily we have our new kid on the block, Steve Shoppman, who is not only teaching us about all things American (‘’Steve what’s a corn dog?’’,  ‘’Steve what are grits?’’,  ‘’ Steve what’s a la mode?’’) but has also brought new chat, tunes and comedy podcasts to the table.  Apparently meat loaf is a loaf made of meat.  Thanks Steve.

The thing about being on such a tight schedule is that we really notice how diverse the US landscape is, we’ve gone from oceans to mountains to deserts to forests and back again.  I’ve really been amazed at how much the US has to offer and how much we’ve fallen in love with this land of opportunity.

Arriving in Bryson we found a friendly Motel called the Relax Inn that looked like the Motel out of ‘My name is Earl’ but had a 95% cleanliness rating.  The trouble with waking up somewhere uber nice is its always back to reality with a bump…


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One Response to “Day 227: Stars & stripes Vs McDonalds”

  1. Hey guys and gals….loved the Lock’em up video! Just checking to see that you get your package when you get into New York! Hope all is going well!
    Your Friend…