Road Trip Home from NYC

I got Torsten off to a good start on settling in to his new home in New York City. Now it is time to get home! This was the solo drive – so I was both able to go a bit farther/faster and also got to make a few detours. I’ve never been or Oak Ridge – so I stopped for lunch with Bob and Colleen there. I have had a visit to Heavener, OK on my list for a while, so I spent the night there. Hot Spring National Park wasn’t too far out of the way, so that was a great place to stop for an hour or so and get a bike ride in. Mom recommended the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis (the Lorraine Motel) – which was an amazing stop and very worthwhile. I had wanted to pack in several more stops – a night in Cumberland to visit with Heavner family (where the spell and pronounce it correctly! ;), a day (or two) in DC to work and catch up with folks. But I was ready to get home! I did stop through Lubbock, replacing all the thermostats with fancy smart ones. The trip home looked something like:

I spent the nights in Christianburg VA, Nashville TN, Heavener OK, and Lubbock TX. I got some good bike riding in each day along the way – a good way to break it up and get some physical and mental sanity in there.

The visit to the National Civil Rights Museum was fantastic – I can’t recommend it enough. An amazingly powerful museum and great display and journey. Seeing Dr. King’s room was beyond words.

A stop through Hot Springs National Park was fun. This national park was quite different from any other I’ve visited – the history here was interesting and visiting the old baths was wild. It felt a bit more “disney” than other parks (even Yellowstone), but there was a nice bike ride through:

The visit through (and overnight at) Heavener was fantastic. I loved it. The Hodler Hotel was great. Heavener is very much a railroad town and was fun to visit. I found a good alternate place to spend the night:

I visited the Heavener Runestone park – whether or not the Vikings made it to Oklahoma, the park was nice and a good morning bike ride (plenty of up! but a good place to enjoy my donuts from the Donut Palace).

Heavener is a train town (reminded me a bit of Cumberland!) – even though they spell and pronounce it (Heavner) incorrectly), this was still a good place for a pleasant bike ride.

I stopped by the library – they were so friendly and fantastic! It was great to get a little insight into family history. Heavener roots in Bedford PA. The first mayor of Heavener was Mat – I’m just making up the story that he swapped a “t” (in Matt) out for the “e” (stuck in the middle of Heavener)… 😉 The documents I found in the Heavener library indicated that there was some misinformation that Mat was the first postmaster, but actually his wife was the postmaster and he was the mayor. The folks at the library were awesome – but they tried to correct me on the pronunciation.. It was a Saturday, so their boss wasn’t around – and she was a true Heav(e)ner. I’d like to go back and visit the area some more – great place and more history to explore.

After (not enough!) time in Heavener, I went to Oklahoma City to visit Prairie Brewing for lunch – also on the life list to visit. There was good food (but the Hot Chopsticks just barely got my order done before they closed early for Lunar New Year – thank you!) and good tasters of beer and good beers to take home.

with a little taste of Escher for the IKEA instructions earlier on this trip… ?

After a (too short!) visit / overnight in Lubbock, the only real weather of the trip hit – a nice winter snowstorm (it was really coming down when I left Lubbock) meant that I went a bit south (via Roswell instead of the normal Clovis route)..

But… I made it home! Great drive and great to be home:

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