Cathy Googled, “where do you find the be nice you’re in Oregon, bumper stickers?” A link on the interweb sent her to my Facebook page. That’s where she found my cell phone number and proceeded to call me. I was sitting by a bridge with Jo taking a rest when my phone rang. Cathy was visiting Bends Westside, coming from Ashland, wanting to know where she can buy my bumper stickers. I point her to a number of places in town; Newport Market, Bellatazza or Salud Raw Food.
I couldn’t have asked for a nicer weather forecast. Jo and I hopped on the bike in Opsalouses and headed east at first. The cloud cover guarded us from the sun and occasionally we were drizzled on as we rode between Port Barre and Krotz Springs.
We rolled over a bridge, then passing by the Atchfalaya Wildlife Refuge. We didn’t stop. There’s plenty of wildlife along the side of the roadway. I spot several rather exotic looking birds tucked back in the thick damp swamp beside us.
When it comes to crossing roads, frogs aren’t as lucky as chickens. And no one wants to know why the frog did it either. I imagine they were trying to make it to the other side during the last big storm, coming up short and sometimes flat.
There’s no shortage of Armadillos out here either. They’re rather creepy looking when they’re turned upside down or inside out, or both. I veer my bike around them, avoiding the prehistoric looking creatures. Jo freaked out when he saw his first Armadillo roadkill.
There’s a scene in the movie, National Lampoons Vacation, where Clark Griswold is crossing over the Mississippi River, barreling down the highway in the Family Truckster. “The Mighty Mississippi, The Ole Miss, The Old Man” he says, then breaks out singing Deep River in a baritone voice.
I did the same as Jo and I crossed over The Ole Miss. I stopped and leaned my bike against the concrete wall, looking over into the water a hundred or more feet below. A barge came plowing up the channel as I stood there…singing Deep River.
After touring through the pleasant little town of New Roads, we headed out in to the Louisiana country-side, passing by an old cemetery, a power-plant and the Audubon State Historic Site. Jo runs along side me, stretching his legs.
I predict that it’s another ten miles to Jackson. The sun would be setting soon. I glance at a map on my iPhone and locate an RV Park nearby. There’s nothing else around so I consider myself lucky. The place is called Peaceful Pines. My odometer registered sixty (s)miles for the day as I pedaled into their gravel parking lot. A nice woman handed me a bottle of water and pointed us to a perfect little spot beside the pond.