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Incensed to Jericho!
Written By: OC Fotoguy
*Click images below to view larger versions.
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
Incensed to Jericho!
    My return trip to O.C. is really working.  I checked the towns where some of Andrew Zimmern Bizarre Foods places are located.  I’m limiting my driving to less than 300 miles a day, stopping to check things out, and enjoying.  On April 4th after a great meal in Natchitoches, I pointed my truck with my nest (slide-in camper on a pickup truck) north and meandered slowly through rural Louisiana and crossed the Mississippi Line.  I needed a break, so I found a McDs, where I hoped I would have wifi.  My truck is a large vehicle for the parking spots.  I knew it would be easier to get out of one if I backed in, so I pulled into one in the next row, slowly and carefully backed into one in the back row checking my mirrors on each side frequently.
    After I’d parked I decided to cook my breakfast in my nest (McDs has nothing for me!).  As I got out of the driver’s seat I noticed several people staring in my direction.  They said nothing, so I went into my nest.  I left the door partially open. Several minutes later I heard someone yell, “You hit my truck.”  I went outside to see that two elderly grandfatherly-looking men were standing there.  One, who owned the pickup truck, parked in the spot next to the one that I’d pulled into to back into the one I was in.  He repeated, “You hit my truck.”  That was rather unbelievable to me and I told him I’d been parked for over five minutes.  He said, “Someone in McDs told him that as I was backing I hit the fender of his truck” and showed me a faint line and shallow dent.  I thought about the starers and wondered am I being set up?  I told him I didn’t think I did it.  He was adamant, said he had a witness, and was calling the police.  I told him that was his choice.  Then I offered him several hundred dollars to get his truck repaired.  He said he’d have to get an estimate first.  I told him I wanted to do what was right and he said all he wanted was his truck to be in the same condition as when he drove into the lot.  I reoffered the money, he said, no, and called the police.  A policeman showed up.  He listened to the other guy who said that he had a witness, I said I don’t think I did it, and I asked him what he wanted me to do.  The policeman told me, I had to give him my insurance information.  I said, what if I don’t. The policeman said he would lock me up!  I thought again, am the victim of a setup?  The police can’t do that, but maybe they would in rural Mississippi.  The guy, who said I hit him, had been rather level headed and cordial, but it could’ve been an act that they’d pulled repeatedly.  I considered my dilemma, knew the witness had not been presented, wondered what the people staring had seen or if one was the witness, and decided before the insurance company paid, they’d investigate, and if it was a scam it should be disclosed, and gave in.  I gave my insurance info and left incensed.  When I started my day I never expected this!  I immediately decided I would never enter a parking lot in my truck that didn’t have oodles of room to park away from other vehicles, which is usually my habit.  I put it behind me with the thought that if this is the worst thing that happens to me on my way home, I can live with it.  Months later after investigating, the insurance company paid, and of course, raised my rate a couple hundred dollars on my truck and on my car too, that was not involved at all!
    I picked one of Zimmern’s places and charted the fasted course.  It was Kim’s Processing in Clarksdale, Miss.  That place ended up being a pork rind processor.  No thanks, can’t make a meal on those. I was tired, looked around the town, found it to be rundown with few restaurants, and no safe place to park overnight.  I headed for a megamart on the outskirts, noticing a rain storm was coming. Watching for a restaurant, I spotted a texmex place, close to where I was going to park overnight.  The security guard chased me before I could leave for the restaurant.  I moved closer to dinner behind an abandoned building, ate and was back in my nest before the rains came.  Sure not my best day!
    The next day I headed east.  It was Saturday, I knew I wanted to checkout another Bizarre Food’s place, City Grocery, Oxford, Mississippi.  That could be my overnight spot.  I arrived about noon, a little early to stop traveling for the day.  I found the small town delightful, but it was a chilly day.  A craft fair was beginning in its Court House Square and there were many restaurants there, too.  I could walk through the exhibits in an hour, easy.  I’m not a shopper, but I like to eat and sip a cold one, but it was a little early to start and it was chilly.  I decided to put this place on my Next Year’s List and headed for Gardenville, Ala.; there’s a great BBQ Restaurant Jim N Nick’s, that has a sports bar.  I feasted on a smorgasbord of pork, watched my fill of NCAA Basketball semifinals, and took a nice walk.
    The next morning it was off for the Walls of Jericho, a Nature Conservancy Preserve in the mountains on the Alabama/Tennessee line, north of Scottsboro, Ala.  There was to be a Polar Vortex (whatever that is) when I passed through this area last year, so I skipped it.  I didn’t see the canyon where I walked in the Tennessee part, but the wild flowers were incredible.  I’d never seen some of them and they were new to me.  They must require a very specific habitat, because in less shaded and slightly different altitude they were absent.  Next time I’ll do the section in Alabama, where the map shows a trail to the canyon’s rim.
    The next day I drove through the Smokey Mountains, and snapped some photos between the rain showers.  The cloudy drizzly weather produces great soft light for flower photos, so I filled mine with red bud that is indigenous there.  That’s where the Ocoee River area is where the Olympic White River Rafting events were held.  I thought maybe I could overnight there somewhere, but didn’t find a place.
    On the down slide and lovin’ it.  Ask me about a free photo.
Bob R  o.c.FotoGuy
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