Signaling surrender – The Sun Wins

“I woke last night to the sound of thunder . How far off I sat and wondered.” (Thanks Bob Seger). Actually, I didn’t have to wonder how far away the rain and thunder were over night. They were right outside my hotel window. It did wake me up. It’s the first real rain we’ve seen since we left home. The motorcycles got a good washing.

Glad we’re not riding them right now

The rain stopped but once the sun came out, it was like living in a steam cooker. I was pretty much finished with broiling myself. We talked briefly about what to do. I made a comment that this just wasn’t fun like it’s supposed to be. I’ll think about a plan while we visit a site I’ve wanted to see for a very long time.

When it was time for me to do my first college campus visit, my parents wanted to go too. The visit was brief but on the way home I had my ear glued to the car radio. If you know the words “one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” you know what I was so intensely listening to. Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon. I still have a dream of becoming an astronaut one day. I just couldn’t pass up a visit to the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL. I told Mrs. Henry to expect to be there maybe an hour tops. I was fascinated. Mrs Henry asked about the history of the race to moon which indicated that she also was caught up. I’m going to let the pictures speak……

The price of re-entry (that’s a space joke) is $30 each. There is no discount for seniors or AAA or anything unless you can prove you have stood on the moon. Where else could you see an entire Saturn V rocket suspended from the ceiling. Where else coud you learn the name of the official NASA mascot – TOPS. If Tops is an astronaut – he’s way bigger than he looks on TV.

We had miles to go so we walked back out into the blazing Alabama morning and I started to feeling uncomfortable already. Here’s how bad it got. I abandoned my plan of visiting the Barber Motor Museum just so we could get out of the blazing day and into a hotel room. I’m waving the white flag. We originally planned to spend a couple of days on Fort Walton Beach in the Florida panhandle. We still had 250 miles to go to get there so we could really fry on the sand. That’s when I asked the fateful question “Are you having fun?” I already knew the answer. Same response I had. This is not enjoyable. This evening I put together a plan to jettison (another space reference) the original plan and come up with something that included a U-turn back towards Henry Ranch. Florida will have to wait.

Total miles today: 182 Total miles for the trip 620.

Still hot even at sundown

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