Well, after almost two months the Astrals were finally able to extract themselves from Florida. Pretty funny that in one short day, we've managed to add two additional state notches to our travel belts. Granted, we just buzzed through Alabama, but we did stop long enough for some good ol' down home cooking before heading further west a bit to roost in Ole Mississippi for a few nights. Two things we are going to see in Ole Miss are the National Sandhill Crane Preserve and Biloxi, to see if there are any Blues there. Ha! We are only staying here in Ocean Springs, MS for three nights. I did make a mistake on the reservation (since corrected) and had booked for four. I might have done it subconsciously to bring to mind this great Dylan song:
Everybody movin’ if they ain’t already there
Everybody got to move somewhere
Stick with me baby, stick with me anyhow
Things should start to get interestin' right about now
All my powers of expression and thoughts so sublime
Could never do you justice in reason or rhyme
Only one thing I did wrong
Stayed in Mississippi a day too long*
These two shots are from the inlet near Destin, FL.
It was raining lightly when we left the hotel but it
cleared up in about 15 minutes and we were able to
get a last glance at the turquoise waters.
One thing you notice about the Gulf Coast, there's
a lot of water everywhere.
The portion of Alabama that touches the gulf is
pretty small and it doesn't take too long to traverse.
Along this route, the only break in the landscape is
Mobile and Mobile Bay, which is ginormous. We saw
the battleship Alabama from the car window. Other from
that, it's pines, pine, pines. Florida has a lot of pines.
Alabama has more. If it wasn't winter, we probably would
have gone north for a spell.
In order to not deny Alabama a small portion of
the mighty economic engine that is the Astral Nomads,
we did stop for lunch. I had grilled trout, turnip greens,
and fried okra. Astral Wendy went with baked chicken
and dressing and also turnip greens. And, of course,
the biscuits. We in the South now. The standard
condiment here was a bottle full of tabasco peppers
soaked in vinegar. You just sprinkle the spicy
vinegar on your food. I wondered what they do
with the peppers when the liquid is all gone. It's either
a mystery or a wasteof some damn savory peppers.
Like I said, there's a lot of water here.
Welcome to Faulkner country and the home of the
Delta Blues. I called Muscle Shoals to book a
session for Wailin' Wendy Wiggins. She is learning
to blow a mean blues harp and I figured some of the local
session cats might want to jam.
Water, water everywhere,
nor any drop to drink**
*Selected verses from Missisippi, Bob Dylan
**Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner