Today I had a long drive in terms of both distance (308 miles) and time (about eight hours). It wouldn't have taken me so long if I hadn't made so many stops. Early in the trip I stopped at a Flying J Plaza to feed Daisy. I also made some unplanned stops, at a roadside stand where I bought some fresh veggies and large strawberries picked that morning, and at a wholesale grocery. I also didn't know that the roads north from I-40 would be so narrow, winding and hilly. Of course that slowed my progress considerably. I thought I would never get here. I can sympathize with the kid in the back seat who keeps asking, "Daddy, are we there yet?"
In any case, it was a relief to finally arrive at the Sylamore Creek Camp, where I will be staying for five nights. It is a lovely wooded campground on the banks of a creek. Several others were already here, even though the rally doesn't officially begin until tomorrow. I arrived just as they were getting ready to go out to eat at Ortega's Mexican Restaurant. They invited me to go with them and kindly waited while I did part of my hooking-up chores. The food and service were very good.
The weather was a bit cool so I decided I had better get my little ceramic heater out again. I had thought I wouldn't be needing it again for a few months.
I had my first packet of mail forwarded to Sylamore Creek from Livingston so I had quite a few pieces to open. Then I tried to get onto the Internet but got no signal at all. I was hoping to catch up on my e-mails tonight. I guess there are too many trees between my rig and either of the two WiFi antennas. I may have to take my computer to the office to do it.
Several more members arrived today so the campground is nearly full. It was fun catching up on the latest news for everyone. It also was fun trying to identify the baby pictures, which Connie had collected ahead of time and mounted on poster board. Since this is only my second Lazy Dazers rally, I still don't know very many of the members well enough to identify their baby pictures. I gave it my best shot, though. We'll find out who won the contest Saturday afternoon.
Today most of us went into Mountain View to look around. Art and Frankie invited me to go with them. We went first to Wal-Mart to get a few necessities for Frankie. Then we parked at the square and visited some of the stores. For lunch we stopped in at the popular Woods Pharmacy and Soda Fountain, where they make sandwiches, sodas and such just as they did in the good ol' days. They also have an old-fashioned candy counter and antique display shelves. We saw a bunch of our fellow Lazy Dazers there.
Back at the campground, the washer tournament began. Tonight we had dinner at Jo Jo's Catfish Wharf, where we were stuffed to the gills. They started us off with pinto beans, green tomato relish and hush puppies. Then came the main course. I had the "Hook and Sinker" plate (three pieces of catfish), which was more than enough. The "Minnow" plate had four pieces and "Tadpole" five pieces of catfish. The "Hungry Fisherman" has eleven pieces!
This afternoon I went to Wal-Mart with four others. I bought a pair of jeans and some fruit and pickles for tonight's feast. The campground owner, Guy Harris, smoked a beef brisket for us and all we had to do was bring side dishes. Can't beat a deal like that. Yummy!!
After dinner a special prize was given to the winner of the washer tournament and the "Dim Bulb" award was given to the person who did or said the dumbest thing. There were several really good ones such as Bill, who towed his car all the way from Tyler to the campground in Drive instead of Neutral. I thought he should have gotten the award! There were also general travel prizes. All our names were drawn from a basket. I received a shower curtain and package of napkins.
Since this was our last night of the rally, we had to clear out all our stuff. The time went very fast. I can't believe that it's already over. Some have already left and most of the rest will leave tomorrow.