To quote The Grateful Dead (a band to which I have never intentionally listened), what a long strange trip it’s been.
Driving my sister-in-law’s SUV, Dan and I left Chicago Tuesday morning. We made it to Quincy that afternoon, where we spent the next several hours with one of my cousins that I hadn’t seen for more than twenty years. Russ and Judy have us a tour of the town and took us to dinner at a great restaurant on the Mississippi. Dan was pleasantly surprised to discover that these relatives were cosmopolitan types: they have traveled extensively and are well read.
We left for Hannibal in the middle of a rainstorm, which we should have taken as an omen.
The next morning, we started toward Kansas City. However, Dan’s brother alerted us to the severe storm warnings looming over the Midwest, and we soon altered our course, heading directly to Nevada, Missouri, instead.
Nevada is both just like I remember it and completely changed. It seemed so sleepy back in the late Eighties. Cottey College, the women’s school I attended, is still beautiful, and most of the traditions are still in place. A current student led us on a tour of the greatly improved and expanded campus. I wish I had a daughter to send there.
We headed toward Bentonville, Arkansas, and the Crystal Bridges Museum, which was open until 9:00 on Wednesday. Dan and I arrived a little after 7 pm and Dan was able to see everything he was interested in with time to spare.
After a good night’s sleep, we awoke to discover that we were once again in the path of the storms. Our original intention was to go through Oklahoma City; instead we dropped down into Texas. Dan really doesn’t like Texas.
I’ll tell you more next time.