It’s all about the journey
A moving on day today. We left the Civil War behind – hotel cannons too – and headed west
over the Mississippi Bridge into Louisiana. (Oooops, nearly missed that sign on the State line!)
Sadly, I did miss the big welcome sign but it’s tricky taking photographs when travelling at speed!
There was quite a different landscape on the western side of the river – a flatter, more agricultural scene than we’ve seen at any time this trip.
To begin with, along Highway 80, it was mostly corn growing alongside the road.
But soon, a different crop was there. We were unsure at first but decided it was soybeans. I took a photo so I could check once we had access to Google again
The towns were a little scratty, sad to say and it didn’t look as if any of them had hit the big time recently. I think life in northern Louisiana must be pretty hard going if towns like Talullah, above, were anything to go by.
Still, it’s always more interesting to stick to the byways and even if the sights are unconventional, we still enjoy the observations!
From time to time there’s a bonus sighting for someone (guess who?) This train passed us by slowly enough for Mary to wave to the driver (and get a wave in return). No sooner had we got over the excitement than…
There was another! (and another wave…)
Our first stop was scheduled for Monroe, LA, where there was an old Coca Cola bottling plant; one of the first, apparently. But try as we might, we couldn’t find anything of the sort.
So we moved right along towards our next “highlight” at Gibsland. Only one problem…you know that railway line? They were working on one of the level crossings and with only 500m to go, the road was closed!
Seriously closed too. No sneaking through!
The car in front of us took a left turn down a small lane though, so we followed it and sure enough, we made it across the ricketiest of bridges and into Gibsland. As we crossed the bridge we could see them replacing the rails. No wonder we couldn’t cross.
Never say we don’t have adventures though. We had overcome several difficulties to get here…
Yes, this was the Bonnie and Clyde town. But having got this far, we decided the place looked so hokey, we’d not bother going inside!
I peered through the windows though!
Oh, and guess what was on the opposite corner of the street? Another Bonnie and Clyde Museum!
Their car was parked outside the first one though, so we thought we knew which one was the real deal.
Time to move on, then. But look what we found. Second time today!
Thankfully it was an easy diversion and before too long we were arriving in Bossier City, just across the Red River from Shreveport, our destination.
I had to take this picture for my British friends, for whom “pants” has an altogether different meaning. Just think, nearly $15 for ironing three pairs of pants (even if you did get the 4th pair free)
Anyway, though we knew Shreveport to be a gambling destination, the contrast from what we’ve seen today was still a surprise.
We’ve booked Hilton brands throughout our road trip, mostly opting for Hampton Inns until now. With no Hampton Inn in town, we booked a straightforward Hilton hotel but on our arrival, our reservation had become lost. Thankfully, on a Tuesday out of conference season, there were plenty of rooms available and since he had to make a new booking for our rooms, we got them at today’s last minute, bargain price: nice one!
Nice view too
Dinner tonight was at the Blind Tiger; the name a reference to prohibition days, I discovered. Mary and I chose fried shrimp, which was yummy, and it was my hero who did the local thing tonight: he chose a shrimp platter with fried shrimp, blackened shrimp, shrimp ettouffee, shrimp pies with deep fried corn and jambalaya!
Oh and I forgot to say, Louisiana is a new US state for us and when we stepped out of the car in Monroe, we chalked up #46. Ker-ching!!