Monday, June 09, 2008


Road trip with gas at $4.00/gallon? Well not just any road trip. A "halfway across the country-I'm moving my girlfriend to Denver" road trip. Tami already had her job, her condo, her new car, her new master's degree, and her new boyfriend, so now all she needed was to put it all together in this fantastic road trip.

It started on the last day of May, after I got off of work, I immediately hopped a flight down to Tampa, Fl. Meanwhile, Tami was leaving her brother's graduation from high school. More specifically his after party. With the minuscule Ody, her new Scion XD, packed to the roof with her belongings, she left Sarasota headed for the Tampa airport to pick me up. First stop would be Gainesville and the University of Florida, her undergraduate alma mater. After only a 2 hour drive, we checked into our hotel then headed to have dinner with her old friends, Hal and Cody.

The next day began the first long day. Well in fact we were making 2 long days, back to back, in a push to Dodge City, KS so we can have more time there before I had to be back at work. So the first full day was a long drive all the way to Memphis, TN and Barbecue. Our route took us along the panhandle and up the length of Alabama, cutting across the corner of Mississippi.

Just across the AL - MS border, we stopped at the awesome welcome center (good job MS!) and collapsed onto the lush grass under a tree, where pictures occurred.

After signing the ledger and grabbing our free cup of needed coffee, we finished off the last 2 hours to Memphis.

In Memphis we met up with an old friend Adam Forette who lives in downtown, and headed out for barbecue ribs. It's kind of nice to have someone to split expensive meals with. ;) Afterwards we found an outside bar and listened to a band play.

Adam and Sarah

Tami and I

Mississippi River from the top of the Peabody Hotel

That night we stayed at Adam's pad, and left at 5am the next morning for Dodge City. The route took us through Little Rock, where we stopped for breakfast with Dan Griswold. Unfortunately we were forced to temporarily abandon our "no chain restaurants" rule due to the closure of a diner and my unnatural yearning for stuffed french toast. Plus we didn't have all day to search for a restaurant in the area.

After getting through the ozarks, fighting the winds and tolls of Oklahoma and Kansas, we were just outside of Dodge City when I looked in the rearview mirror and saw a cop turning around to bust my girlfriend speeding. Oops.

We found it apt that we got the law slapped upon us in Dodge city.

If you don't know about Dodge City, its basically an old frontier town of the 1800s. Many famous lawmen lived there, including Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday. It sits next to the Santa Fe Trail and was founded to protect wagons from American Indian attacks.

Anyways, we got a room in a bed and breakfast there, which was fantastic. The folks were SUPER friendly, the breakfast completely amazing, and the other guests, which included travel writers from different countries and a harley riding couple, were also cool.

The next day we spent the day exploring the town, going to the museum, seeing the gunfight outside the re-created front street, having a root beer (it was NOON!) at the recreated long branch saloon. It was so awesome that now Tami is on a Wild West kick like me and we're starting to rent all these western movies. (just finished the Good, bad, and the ugly)

We left town around 3, and stopped at a historical site where you can still see, over 150 years later, tracks in the ground from the Santa Fe Trail.

Tami's Bamboo Plant was not doing well

The Boot Hill Bed and Breakfast

Yup, thats me in a cowboy hat! What, Tami likes it!

Boot Hill Cemetary

Re-created front street

The Long Branch Saloon!

The Santa Fe Trail

Where the tracks used to (still are!) to be

That evening, after stopping in Colorado Springs for a minor league baseball game with Tim and Jo Inwood, we finally arrived in Denver over 2,000 miles later. We had a fantastic time, I tried licorice (and liked!) and Tami now eats sunflower seeds. Mission complete. ;)


jch said...

That sounds like an absolute blast. I'm all about road trips! You guys keep up the exploring. Which brings me to this, is there a trip to NYC in the future? :)

kentbrantly said...

SF CA to Corvallis OR to Wamsutter WY to Abilene TX to Indpls IN = 4500 miles. With a wedding in the middle.
Not to one up you or anything. I'm just saying... :)

sounds like an awesome trip, yo.

The Juice said...

umm...looky here, kently, i don't see any of your pictures around here, so for all I know the entire thing was made up! ;)

though, unlike laura gore's prediction, we did not get married, and you did, so yes, you have one upped me, I definitely cede that to you, mr brantly. and congrats, btw. ;)

The Juice said...

and joe, the answer to your question is possibly. we are pondering a july weekend trip to shiloh, and should that come to pass i'll do everything i can to stop by the hays place for a visit!

Tamara said...

I decided to write my version of the road trip before I read yours and I totally forgot about all the tolls in Oklahoma and Kansas, ack! What a scam. Oh well.
That package of sunflower seeds just kept going and going. I finally finished it at Denver International waiting for my flight this weekend. I was so ready for peanuts, Cheese Nips, and dehydration-inducing ginger ale.

P.S. This statement serves as verification that no marriage occurred (though congratulations, Kent!) and also that I think NYC would be awesome. ;)

annalee said...

hi jeremy,
what a road trip. nice lazy g shirt! and just read the g.f. story. that is awesome. so happy for you!