Dear Family and Friends,
Today we got up early and continue our ride through the Ozark mountains of western Arkansa. Leaving early we got some terrific views of the mounts and valleys around us. We rode for about 1 1/2 hours to a little town called Jasper. We heard about a biker cafe there that had a good, healthy breakfast. It was a very small town but it did not disappoint. The cafe had lots of history and ambiance. It was founded in 1909 and still going!
The town was only a few blocks long. One thing I have noticed in our travels through the south is there wonderful old Colonial and Victorian style buildings slowly wasting away. It is tragic so many of these fine old buildings will soon be beyond repair and lost. I think they are just too expensive to restore and most of the small towns can’t afford to do it. Some of the towns that are major tourist attractions have the funds to maintain them.
We have gone through so many towns where the main street still has lots of store buildings but they are 90% empty. The big chain stores and mail order companies have wiped out traditional small town main streets. Really sad.
After a healthy low calorie breakfast (liar) we rode further north along curvy mountain roads with great views. Our next stop was a bigger town and a major tourist attraction called Eureka Springs.
I think Arkansas has lots of towns named after springs. The state has lots of natural spring water and in the early days it was considered a healthy source of water with healing powers. Also even though there are lots of creeks and rivers here that look clean when you drink out of then you never know for sure who or what just pooped in it up stream. Natural springs do not have the problem.
After a good walk around the town, a quick coffee and a Eureka Springs sticker to add to my motorcycle we continued through the Ozark mountains west until we came down into the flat lands of Oklahoma and the Cherokee Nation. We rode for about an hour or more on a boring straight highway with strong gusts of wind and light sprinkles. Not the best ride but then we turned off the highway and wandered through some rolling hills and farm lands, the weather improved and the afternoon turned into a delightful ride.
One more thing, a bit of insight into life here. I read in the local news today that a local man convicted of a crime had his gun taken away. He appealed the ruling and the courts allowed him to take a gun out for the day if he returned it that night.. Why you ask? He claimed his only source of food was hunting and he needed the gun to eat.. A very valid reason to own a gun.
So tonight we are in Oklahoma, tomorrow who knows!
Real Ozark health food. Don't blame me! It is required to assimilate with the local natives so as not to offend them. We only ate this to blend in.. ;)
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