We’re staying at the Roadrunner RV Park, which was recommended by folks at Turkey Creek. Aside from the pump jack next to the entrance, it’s a very pristine park, with concrete pull-through sites (yeah – no dirt/dust), but sadly very few trees. The park is very convenient to OKS – just 10 minutes away, but feels a bit sterile after all nature we enjoyed at Turkey Creek. After settling in yesterday (Friday) we took Sadie with us to check out the happenings in Bricktown, a cool urban district, just east of Oklahoma City’s downtown business district. We parked at another Bass Pro Shop and walked along the Bricktown Canal. It was already dark and the area was lit up with streaming lights along the canal, along with Christmas lights and decorations (and bars and restaurants on both sides). There were boat tours of the canal and horse-drawn carriage rides thru the district. It was a pleasant evening (68 degrees) and we enjoyed a leisurely stroll along the canal and edges of the City Center district.

We seemed to have settled into a morning routine. Fester wakes up at some point early in the morning (like 3 or 4 am) and lifts Sadie onto the bed with me. He makes coffee then sits in the recliner while he surfs the net, catching up on news, stocks, weather, etc. I roll out of bed around 5:30ish and we sit around talking about our plans for the day, while I sip my coffee. Fester will usually eat a banana or some cereal and get sleepy, so he goes back to bed while I practice yoga. Finally, both Fester and Sadie roll out of bed and we start our day. Retirement is pretty sweet!

This morning, we had yet another discussion about what our short-term plans would be. We have been talking about heading to southern Utah to visit the National Parks, but made the decision this morning that we’ll take that trip next fall, since the parks are already experiencing cold temperatures. That said, we’re going to make a mad dash down to Texas! We decided to head south sooner than planned and will spend Thanksgiving Day somewhere south of Dallas/Ft. Worth.

Today was a brisk, windy 61 degrees, so we bundled up for a trip into town for lunch… at the infamous Cattlemen’s Steakhouse in Stockyard City – part of the Stockyard District. We had dinner there about 25 years ago while on an impromptu Jeep trek thru the Northwest, and we still remembered the great steaks after all this time. Even at 11am, the place was packed – they started serving breakfast at 6am! I opted to try their craft brew with dinner, not realizing it was a 22oz bottle! Our waitress, Liz, had a nice chuckle at our surprise and laughed when we joked “now this is a cowboy breakfast.” We both ordered a sirloin steak dinner, and while it was tasty, it fell short of our expectations. Of course we topped our meal off with a hot blackberry cobbler, a la mode ice cream. Yum!

After our early lunch, we returned to Bass Pro Shop to park, then walked to the nearby streetcar stop. Starting in November, thru January, you can ride the street cars on Saturdays and Sundays for free. While waiting for the streetcar, we met two retired gentlemen who served as OKC Ambassadors – they basically stroll the districts to help keep the streets safe and provide visitors with interesting information about the city. We enjoyed getting the inside scoop from them while we rode the streetcar into the business district. We wanted to check out the city’s architecture, a blend of classic and modern.

We visited the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, which was a somber, yet remarkable remembrance of the destruction Timothy McVeigh wrought on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in just one minute 26 years ago. From the Twin Gates that frame the moment of destruction, to the gently flowing reflection pool, to the 168 Chairs (including 19 children) which represent those who lost their lives in the April 19, 1995 bombing, to the Survivors Wall, listing 600 names, one can’t help but be moved and inspired by the community’s resilience and hope.

On the road again… finally!

Since we’re still at the beginning of our adventure, with a long way to go, we decided to skip any more shows (save money), but we did spend some time walking and driving around Branson and Branson Landing. We picked up the “historic” trolley at the Bass Pro Shop and enjoyed a ride through Branson (a treat for Fester who is typically driving and misses the attractions that I call out). We visited some local parks with Sadie and then enjoyed lunch on the Pour House patio in Hollister, since Thursday was a gorgeous day. It was 77 degrees when we sat down for lunch, and in just an hour, the temps fell to 56 – crazy!

The mirror’s all done and works just fine. Since that project was a success, Fester decided to tackle the TV/Stereo system since we had the time (waiting for our packages). Believe it or not, we haven’t watched any TV since we started our trip. I can’t say I’ve really missed it. The wiring was a mess, but after spending the morning working on it, we can now watch TV and listen to music through the stereo (versus our Alexa). While we probably won’t watch much TV (other than the World News), it will be nice to be able to watch movies. Fester took some time to fly his drone around the area, which was also fun for me since I have my own set of goggles and can experience the flight in real time. We’ve learned to sit down while flying – otherwise you get a bit nauseous. Fester is mastering his flying skills before we get out West.

We wrapped up our unfinished business (received our forwarded mail & new credit cards) and finally pulled out of Turkey Creek RV Village around 9am on Friday morning. After stopping to fuel up and hitch the Jeep to Zephyr, we were on the road by 9:30, heading to Tulsa, Oklahoma, for the night. To be more specific, we’re staying on the grounds of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa.

While on our way to Tulsa, we passed our 1,000-mile milestone, and have been on the road 23 days! Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond our control, we ended up spending 13 of those nights at Turkey Creek RV Village. We really enjoyed our stay and the people, but…

This will be our first time staying at a casino. There are no hook-ups (water, electricity and sewer), just a parking lot with a designated RV area. Like a Walmart – it’s a FREE place to stay overnight on our way to Oklahoma City (aka OKC). With all of the casino’s security, we knew we would have a safe place to stay for the night.

After settling in, we took a quick visit to the casino to get the lay of the land. Like most casinos, there were a lot of blinking lights and beeping noises coming from the video slot machines, as well as cigarette and cigar smoke (yuck). Being the Hard Rock Casino, there was definitely a music theme and rock n’ roll vibe throughout. An eclectic mix of music played as we walked around, some from large video screens featuring a concert. Hallways were decorated with nostalgic band posters and other memorabilia, bringing back fond memories. We are not “casino” people, but grudgingly splurged $5 on a slot machine, which we lost in one pull (maybe that’s why we are not casino people). On our second trip to the casino, we had dinner at the Eatery and watched old MTV videos, (think of a very young Kevin Bacon dancing the night away to “Gotta Cut Loose”) what a hoot!

We were in no hurry, so we took our time getting to our next campground. OKC is a straightforward route from Tulsa, pretty much Route 44W the entire way. Along the way, we saw a foreboding sign along the highway “Hitchhikers may be prison escapees” – yikes!