|Sun, 21 Feb: A short day...
We had a pretty restless nite sleeping near the Calcasieu River Bridge in Lake Charles LA. We were boondocking at the Isle de Capri Casino, but the RV parking area is literally at the base of piling that support this high-level hiway bridge spanning Lake Charles. Every time a truck crossed the expansion joints it sounded like a foundry. Add the nearby trains signalling at multiple grade crossings and you have a not-too-peaceful environment. So, despite ear plugs we didn't get all that much rest. We'll cross this site off our list.
Nevertheless, we slept in till half past six and then had a relaxing morning. Following tea and breakfast we got ready for the road. Sandi pulled out of the casino parking lot at 0945. A mile west on the I 10 frontage road brought us to an on-ramp to I 10 eastbound. As soon as we merged into traffic we started the climb up the west side of the Calcasieu River Bridge (technically, the World War II Memorial Bridge). From ground level traffic must climb to 135' above the water.
Once on the east side (Westlake, LA) I 10 continued toward Lafayette. Sunday traffic was a bit heavier than we anticipated, but we moved along with no slowdowns. Eighty miles later we transitioned to US 90 south toward New Iberia. US 90 is in horrible condition and even at 45 mph Carpe rattled and shook with each pothole and mis-aligned pavement joint.
Near New Iberia we exited to local roads and pulled into the Cajun RV Park at 1145. This is a Passport America 50% discount park where we were assigned a 50-amp full hookup pull-thru site for only $15/nite (+ tax of course). We'll be here two nites as we visit nearby Avery Island, home of the Tabasco Sauce factory.
Plans are for us to depart here Tuesday morning and, in a series of five 165ish mile days, be in Wachula Florida a week today. As with all plans, these are subject to change...
Today's run was exactly 100 miles with fuel economy just south of 8 mpg.
Mon, 22 Feb: A pretty spicy day...
It was cloudy yesterday and this morning was downright gloomy. During breakfast it started raining and continued to do so most of the morning. Around eleven it let up a bit and we loaded our tourist stuff (cameras, etc.) in the car and headed to Avery Island, home of the Tabasco Factory.
We crossed the bridge and picked up our pass at the toll gate. We were told there is a one dollar toll to enter the island, but the fellow in the shack said "no charge" and we didn't argue.
The turn for the Tabasco factory is just beyond the shack and in no time we had the car parked and were walking thru the rain to the museum building. The tour is not free, it cost us $5.50 each (less our 10% senior discount) to enter and start the self-guided tour. The museum depicts the 150 year history of Tabasco and includes exhibits and items of the product's evolution. It is really an integral part of our culture.
After the museum we visited the blending section where the peppers, vinegar, and salt are combined and processed. After processing the product moves into oak barrels for ageing. The barrels are used bourbon barrels, which we believe accounts for much of Tabasco's allure.
After ageing the sauce is bottled, packaged, and in its way to us. Of course one must exit every tour thru the gift shop, and this one was a lot of fun. Needless to say they have Tabasco-themed products of every kind, and we bought product, shirts, mugs, etc., etc.
We had lunch in New Iberia at the Seafood Connection. Sandi had the fried oyster dinner and Bob the shrimp dinner. It'll be soup for dinner tonite.
We're now back home and the rain continues. Forecast is for rain to continue today, tonite, and into tomorrow. Guess we'll give Carpe's wipers a workout.