The Kindness of Strangers
From Sea to Shining Sea, Day 13: Columbus, MS, to Monroe, LA
|HEY! WHO TURNED ON THE FOG MACHINE?|
Since we had already traveled US-80 from Jackson to Vicksburg before our Thanksgiving backtrack, we called on I-20 to take us back to Vicksburg more efficiently. Still hoping to obtain a water sample from the Mississippi River, we drove to Vicksburg's downtown waterfront on Levee Street, only to discover that it's the narrow Yazoo River flowing past that spot, not the Mississippi.
|THE $2,249 FARE FOR A 9-DAY CRUISE SEEMED PRETTY REASONABLE.|
Determined to scoop up a vial of Old Man River, we continued on Levee Street past the waterfront in hopes of getting close to the Mississippi. Eventually we found ourselves in the Miller Materials Rock Yard, still not at riverside but unable to continue further. At the security post, we talked to a friendly local named Calvin and told him about our mission. After some discussion, in which he suggested we were unlikely to have any better luck upstream or down, he finally said cheerfully, "Just follow me."
|RIGHT BEHIND YOU, CALVIN!|
|CALVIN COLLECTS OUR WATER SAMPLE.|
|OUR HERO, CALVIN|
Tomorrow we hope to finally make it to Texas, which always seems like where the West begins.
FRIDAY, 25 NOVEMBER 2016
• Ended in: Monroe, LA
• Miles driven: 358 (trip: 2,013)
• Weather: 43° to 66°, foggy to clear
• Letterboxes: none today
• Walked: 2.8 miles (trip: 27.4)
• States: MS, LA (trip: 4)
• Counties: 14 (trip: 64)
• Towns: 23 (trip: 120)
• Gas: $2.499 (premium) in Winona, MS
Loved: After all the back road travel we've been doing, we have to admit, it was pretty cool to make such great time on the interstates today. (Don't judge.)
Lacking: Apparently opportunities for an ordinary individual without a boat to make close contact with the Mississippi River are quite few.
Learned: Meeting Calvin reminded us of something we already knew—that there are some kind and generous people out there. You just have to find opportunities to meet them.