John and Diana are traveling around the country with a 37-foot RV and an 18-year-old cat. This is their story.
Sunday, March 23, 2014
Last Tuesday John and I started the trek which would move our home from Mississippi to Missouri. Before I write about our stop for that evening I have some final musings regarding Mississippi. First, I would like to mention that the state flower is the magnolia, pictured above. We saw several of those trees at one rest stop, and I was pleased to see them as I realized that the further north we traveled we would most likely not see many more blooming plants or trees. Secondly, at all of the rest stops, in Mississippi, where we stopped, there were security guard huts. One can be seen below under the flag.
If I remember correctly, in all of the rest areas we have been in, across the nation, there probably was only a couple of them where we noticed guard shacks. What intrigued me about the ones we saw in Mississippi, was that there were guards in them, which made no sense to me because the guards, to protect the visitors to the rest stops, should be patrolling the grounds and not sitting inside where they could only view the parking lot in front of them! Thirdly, my attention was drawn to the Mississippi flag, which looks a bit like the Confederate flag. Upon researching the subject later I learned that the state's flag is the sole remaining flag with the Confederate battle flag's saltire ( St.Andrew's cross). Mississippi had a flag referendum to change it in 2010, but it was voted down - the state wanted to keep the 1894 flag.
Tuesday evening we parked near the Mississippi River, on the grounds of the Lucky Strike Casino. The casino is in Caruthersville. The town is named after Sam Caruthers (1820-1860) who represented the area in congress in the 1700s. Caruthersville was once called "LaPetite Prairie". The New Madrid earthquake of 1812 devastated the town, but it was rebuilt by 1857 and designated as the county seat of Missouri's bootheel. John and I walked the streets of the town Tuesday evening, and I thought it looked like a sad metropolis. Many of its downtown buildings were empty. There was a bit of activity at a pizza parlor, the only restaurant in town. Of course the casino has plenty to offer in that regard, as well as entertainment. Out at the edge of the town is a Walmart. Have lived in Missouri most of my life I had ofter heard about Caruthersville, but never been there or had any idea of what the town was like- and now I know. We arrived in Illinois on Wednesday, and plan to reside there near our daughter and her husband for awhile. Their little boy Nathan continues to hold a spell over me, I have enjoyed helping out with his care. We also plan to spend some time in St.Louis before hitting the road once more.