The Mighty Mississippi

I got up and saw Chuck off to work and said goodbyes this morning. Sharissa set me up with a care package of wings and things to eat on the road then I backed out of the driveway mid morning. Thanks again for a wonderful visit. Look forward to the next time wherever and whenever that may be. I drove out on the interstate into Louisiana dodging all of the stray viruses that were blowing on the wind trying to attach themselves to the exterior of the RV. Speaking of wind, it was strong and gusty keeping me on my toes. We took a short rest in the industrial center of Lake Charles parking next to a small patch of bayou where a couple of young alligators were enjoying the summer like weather. Cali wasn’t getting too close.

A blustery Lake Charles

After a while, we left I-10 to drive on smaller rural highways skirting any population areas as we headed north up towards Mississippi. This is bayou country where the road was an elevated island passing through submerged trees and swamp. Both sides of the road were lined with crawfish ponds and roadside signs advertised boudin and cracklins with an abundance of Acadian flags.

Crawfish farms

A rest stop here and there in empty parks then we pulled up to the Riverview RV Park on the banks of the magnificent Mississippi River. I can just see Huckleberry Finn floating down the current on his raft dodging all of the snags and logs bobbing along the surface. I sat on the river walk making phone calls while watching long barges push past with their tugs driving them from behind.

The town of Natchez sits just across the river, so I uncovered my bike and rode into the town. They say before the civil war half of the millionaires in the U.S. owned homes in Natchez. During the war, it was one of the only cities to be untouched by the burning and destruction most other southern population centers experienced. The bridge going over had a wide shoulder like a bike lane only full of stones and debris to dodge.

I rode around the quiet streets. There were a few people walking along the river where the Bridge of Sighs was lined with locks. The only establishment open was a pub on the corner where people were standing outside drinking while sort of maintaining a small distance between one another. I checked out a few old houses from the early 1800s then pedaled up to the old cemetery to check it out.

I rolled home down a different road through a tough looking neighborhood then found my way back out to the main drag where I crossed the bridge back over into Louisiana. This side of the bridge only had a little metal step about 18 inches wide. If I’d have known that, I would have done the salmon against traffic on the other side but here I was. I went extra slow knowing a drop onto the bridge into the fast moving traffic would end my little adventures worse than a bout of Coronavirus.

Took Cali for a river view walk then tried to find some local news on the over the air TV channels. No luck, just old cowboy movies and reruns of sitcoms. There have been a few tornadoes recently so I’m keeping my eyes open. Some severe thunderstorms are on the way but it looks like I’m only going to catch the edges as it goes south as I go north. I might have a day driving through it but I’ll be camped to the south of it tomorrow and then past it on the north the night after. Watched part of a cheesy western that put me to sleep.