Bayou Wedding Tour - Day 2 by Mark

Reporting from Slidell, Louisiana.

We made our way through Alabama and Mississippi today, winding up about an hour or so from Baton Rouge. We’re big fans of giant statues, and Birmingham has them all over. Here’s “Miss Electra”, presiding over downtown and the local power company. Per Roadside America, "She appears to be ready to either 1) hurl benevolent electricity into downtown, or 2) fry Birmingham evil-doers with a bolt from the blue."


On top of Red Mountain we find Vulcan, originally created for the 1904 World’s Fair, finally getting his own park after years of neglect. There’s a museum covering local history, an elevator that takes you up to Vulcan and incredible views.

Vulcan’s posterior.

Vulcan’s posterior.

We had lunch in Tuscaloosa, at Avenue Pub. I had their famed Bacon Burger, while Mindy had a HUMONGOUS chicken sammich.


Needless to say, we just had a snack for dinner.

Enough for day 2—tomorrow is Baton Rouge and our main destination, Lake Charles.


Bayou Wedding Tour - Day 1 by Mark

Well, it’s time for another travelogue. This time, it’s a trip to our niece’s wedding in Louisiana. We’re taking a fairly straight shot down from Ohio, and then a leisurely loop through Texas, Oklahoma, and Missouri on the way back to Columbus.

We tried out Chaney’s Dairy Barn in Kentucky, which reportedly has great ice cream (it did). Sandwiches, not so much.


Our GPS took us on a long trip through the country on the way back to the interstate. We even ran into…well, you know.


There’s a “car vending machine” in Nashville—you can supposedly get one with a coin. Couldn’t find the slot, though.


We saw a rocket ship at a rest stop going into Alabama, so we had a take a look. It was an actual Saturn 1B launch vehicle.


We wound up in Decatur—the local barbecue place (Big Bob Gibson’s) has a great white sauce and won a lot of awards.

That’s a two meat platter on top(brisket and chopped pork), and a potato with chicken, cheese, bacon, and white sauce below.

That’s a two meat platter on top(brisket and chopped pork), and a potato with chicken, cheese, bacon, and white sauce below.


That’s plenty for one day. More tomorrow.

Southern Sweep - Day 4 by Mark

Started late--off to the deep South.

Mississippi--a lot of this out the window...

Then these--Palmettos?  Nope, it's "pinus palustris".

Can you tell that Mindy drove today?

Finally Louisiana--and Lake Ponchatrain.  This is a very long and impressive bridge.

Then N'awlins. The French Quarter seems very run down. Mindy referred to it as "creepy". We were tired and so we decided to move on to Lafayette, LA for the night.

Tomorrow - Hot Sauce, Lake Charles, and niece #2.

Southern Sweep - Day 3 by Mark

We began our first full Tuscaloosa day at City Grille, and a huge breakfast.  Grits, eggs, sausages, biscuits...


Yes, those are grits. Anything that's half butter can't be bad.

The review said the breakfast was dynamite, and I have to agree.

Then a jaunt out to a place called "Pie Lab"--which was unfortunately closed.

On the way back, we stopped at the Moundville Archeological Park


Back at 'Bama, and the world's second largest Starbucks at the Student Union


Two more pics at the University...


We stopped at Steel City Pops--an artisinal popsicle store. I had Pumpkin, while Mindy had Cherry Sour Cream.

Later we had dinner with Abby and her friend Will at an Irish pub. We were worn out, so it's off to bed.

Tomorrow--sleeping in, lots of driving, and a loooonng bridge.



Southern Sweep - Day 2 by Mark

We drove into Nashville and the GPS sent us straight into Titans tailgating--wasn't sure if we would get out, since we kept being directed back into the fray.

We finally made it over to Broadway (the touristy area).

They make boots big in Tennessee

An Elvis sighting

Various signage



We then took a quick jaunt to Greece--no,no.  There's an exact copy of the Parthenon in Nashville.


Of course, no trip would be complete without a giant chicken with a chef hat (Elkton, TN)


Onto Tuscaloosa!
One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas.
How he got in my pajamas, I don't know.
Then we tried to remove the tusks. The tusks. That's not so easy to say. Tusks.
You try it some time. As I say, we tried to remove the tusks.
But they were embedded so firmly we couldn't budge them.
Of course, in Alabama the Tuscaloosa,
but that is entirely ir-elephant to what I was talking about.

Groucho in Animal Crackers (Movie)

Abby gave us a tour of the University of Alabama--Roll Tide! 
We also went down to the boat dock (Abby's on the rowing team)
Finally, we took Abby out to a BBQ place—decent food plus cheesy muffins! We’re still in “vinegary” sauce territory though.


Tomorrow - Southern food, lack of pies, and more 'Bama.