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Entry date: 6-12-2022 - Travel bonus blog #1 - Letters to My Friends

About 4:30am this morning, CST. Bailey and I were out on a walk.

Hello friends,

Yesterday I was too wiped out at the end of the day to sit down and write a bit, but here I am in wonderful Highland, Illinois. This town kind of reminds me of a place like the town in the original Footloose in a way, but our motel has a little room with slot machines and sells Budweiser for $2 a can.

We had a wonderful send off at our friends, Tom/Renee/Quentin's house on Friday. Michael S., was there, too, and we had some great Mexican food. It was hard to get to sleep that night, but we pushed through. I only forgot like three things when we got up on Saturday morning. We pushed off around 5:30am and made our first stop in Winslow for gas and a sprite for Teresa.

There was no corner standing, though.

As we drove, we listened to the Hawk Vs. Wolf podcast with Jason Ellis and Tony Hawk. I loved the Rodney Mullin episode but after we listened to a few of those, I really wanted to tell Jason Ellis to shut the "Fak" up. He talks a little too much, although that is a podcast thing.

Liam decided that Arizona should annex the pretty parts of our drive and was bummed to find out that some of the cool rock formations outside of Gallup, New Mexico were not part of Arizona. I like his plan to annex pretty spots. He mentioned going through and planting an Arizona flag on places he liked.

As a Breaking Bad fan, he was very underwhelmed by Albuquerque as we drove through it. There really isn't much to Albuquerque, to be honest, but maybe I just don't know it. I switched over to the podcast from the dude from Fucked up called Turned Out A Punk. That was pretty cool and a good one for people who love punk rock music. We listened to this as we finished up New Mexico and got into Texas.

Last night we stayed in Amarillo at the place pictured above. My dad and I stayed there last year, too. They take dogs and it is pretty reasonable. No frills, for sure, but the kids and got to get an okay nights sleep. We had Whataburger after Teresa and I made a quick Walmart fun for a towel. I left my favorite towel in the dryer at home. Bummer.

Walmart in Amarillo is like Walmart anywhere, just more cowboy-types. Whataburger was slightly cheaper there than in Phoenix, and we passed out pretty quick after eating.

Bailey and I took our walk around 4:30AM and it seemed a bit sketchy, but maybe that's because it was dark and I really don't know the place. Spider senses were tingling, though, so we stayed in the lit areas. No poop.

We got on the road about 6:15AM (CST) and headed out of Texas on the quick. We saw a giant cross and lots of cows. The road was moving pretty quick and we got to Oklahoma in no time. More cows were sighted and Teresa and I had a good conversation while Liam and Bailey slept. We talked a lot about what we were seeing and Teresa seemed to be really enjoying herself.

We listened to SmartLESS on the way out of Texas and until we got mid-way into Missouri. Those guys are super funny and I highly recommend it if you aren't familiar. Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, and Sean Hayes and whoever the guests are for that week.

It was too early to do anything in Oklahoma (like stop at the wonderful Prairie Artisan Brewery) so we powered through into Missouri. We stopped at a couple places in Missouri. The first was at a Kum and Go, which is a gas station chain there. Teresa got a shirt. She wants to wear it to school on the first day.

The second stop was in Phillipsburg, Missouri to visit the World's Largest Gift Store. It was very big. More impressive, though, was the big dump Bailey took outside of it. A day two dump while traveling is huge (both literally and figuratively). She seemed much happier after that dump, that's for sure. Teresa and I got a few things at the gift store and got back on the road.

The traffic heading into St. Louis on a Sunday afternoon was kind of stupid. People driving like assholes and we got into a couple of small traffic jams. The kids were awake to see the Arch, though, and we got here to Highland, Illinois around 4pm, Phoenix time. It is hot and humid here.

Tomorrow, we head for Cleveland to see our cousins and relax a little bit. I'll check in from there.

See you tomorrow (maybe).

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