As we stopped for breakfast in Springfield, MO on our way out of the town, I reflected that the town really seemed welcoming. Every person we came in contact with was very nice. It really was a nice town to visit. But our time in MO was done and on to Oklahoma we had to go.
I am not sure exactly what I did expect from Oklahoma but I know this wasn’t it. We have been using GPS via VZ Navigator on my cell phone to make our way on this trip and so today was no different. We set the navigator for an interesting thing we read about and headed on our way. The interesting (and not so interesting) thing about entering OK via MO was the turnpike or I-44. This was something we were not prepared for. Oh, we knew we would encounter other states with tolls this time but we did not expect the sheer boredom of this roadway. At first the terrain was nice. It is a beautiful, green, rolling land full of trees and patches of grass where cattle or horses graze. It was relatively unbroken by the dozens of billboards that we had seen on the Missouri side and none of the extremely tall signs for adult video stores or fireworks. It was lovely. But the road is just a continuous stretch of sameness. What I mean is that there was very little variation. Add to this the fact that there are relatively few exits from the turnpike. You can go very long distances with no way off of the road, no rest stops, no place to refuel. After miles and miles of this, we eventually took a break in a small town just north of Tulsa called Bristow. It was a nice little town and we got gas, food, donuts, and a much needed bathroom break. Then back on the road. The only problem was, I mistakenly took the wrong ramp and we ended up heading back north, the way we had just come. And, as noted above, there is no way to turn around so we had to drive for 14 miles before there was an exit where we could get back going the right way. The whole drive had us both stir crazy and my back and legs were seriously stiffening up. We mostly skipped Tulsa because that city was as confusing as the turnpike was long and we were ready to just get on to Oklahoma City.
That was the best idea because we actually did enjoy exploring Oklahoma City. We started by visiting the museum for the 45th Infantry. It was a very interesting museum and collection of vehicles. Then we just drove around and found some interesting buildings including the capitol building and a neighborhood of old homes. When we were both yawning, we headed out to find our lodgings in the town of Norman which is just south of Oklahoma City and here we are.
Tomorrow we will be driving into Texas. More OK turnpike driving but I’m looking forward to Houston.