Talked with a National Park employee while I was at the Tyler Bend Visitor Center. He approached me with a comment, question. "Did you know that 1 out of every 10 motorcycle riders today is a woman?" I laughed and said no, I didn't know that. Then he was worried that he had offended me. I had no idea why. He was from upstate NY, moved here because of the obey part of the marriage contract. Going on 27 yrs. and still happy.
We talked about motocross and KTM's ( he wants one, but can't afford it). The old smells and noises around dirt tracks. He used to go to Unidilla in NY all the time to watch motorcycle races. He was sure I'd never been there before. But in fact, I had, with Todd and Tommy probably back in 2000?
Time to hit it, weather not on my side and I had already outstayed my time table for getting to Siloam Springs, AR before the storms. Traveled some of Arkansas's Heritage Trails. In Particular, part of the Trail of Tears - US 62 to Harrison through Alpena and part of US412. Gave me a lot to think about. Parts of those same roads are also Civil War Heritage Trails. More to think about. I recalled one of the best tours I have ever had --- that really gave me a sense of what it must have been like to be a soldier in the civil war. It was at Gettysburg, we were on a cub scout field trip and our tour guide was my ex-brother in law, Steve Timchula. His twin boys, my nephews were a part of my den. He brought history alive for not only the boys that day, but for all of us.
In light of South Carolina's decision this morning, I feel the need to comment. I have been traveling around Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas and every time I saw a battle flag, I felt fear. A deep seated fear. Let me add a note here, the battle flag is not one of the flags of the confederacy. There were 3 official flags. The battle flag was just that, a flag carried into battle. It was also flown as a Navy jack. It is known as "Southern Cross". I've just learned this.
I have read what the Sons of the Confederate Veterans have said. Heritage not Hate. I get that, I really do. I understand the importance of history. They are proud of their ancestors.
The always wanting to be a rebel, God knows, our government has not done a lot to prove themselves worthy of complete and utter trust. One person looks at the flag and sees a heritage they are proud of. Yet another person sees the flag and remembers that her ancestor was lynched.
I cannot tell you why, but I can tell you that what I feel is very real ---- when I see the battle flag of the confederacy --- my heart jumps into my throat, adrenaline starts rushing and I want to RUN as fast as I can.
Let me also say here, that everyone on my trip so far has been beyond friendly and considerate. Both while I have been on my motorcycle and off. In fact, I was on the wrong side of the road so that I could get a picture and a logging truck actually stopped to wait until the cars in the opposite direction had passed so that he could go all the way around me. And he waved!
Onward, I did not beat the storms. Very thankful I was not on the Interstate. Just kept riding, slow and steady. Stormy is a trooper.(Wonder if I should change her name)?
Checked radar maps this morning at 5 am and decided to just wait it out --- tired of riding in the rain. So I went walking in the rain. Shipped some things I'm not using or finished using or decided I won't need, home. Any bets that I'll need something I just shipped!
Headed to Oklahoma City in the morning via Historic Rt. 66, which I'll pick up just S of Tulsa.