(See the video)
Some days you just have to be on the road. Shreveport has a road leading out of town that rapidly becomes fast and beautiful. It was the kind of day where you plan to take one road, and then take another. We were going to loop into Texas in Texarcana and then decided to drive down the state line, with Texas on the left and Arkansas on the right. Turning off the road to see what a "BAYOU" was, we saw a calf and her mother nursing, women raking leaves and men chopping wood. The bayou was a place for letting your boat in the water, and I almost drove my car into the bayou because I couldn't see over the it as I approached it. We passed houses where they sell quilts and handmade dolls. People on the way were friendly and happy to see us. As the odometer flipped from 999 to 000 we found ourselves turning east and crossing a huge lake bridge, the sun was shimmering on the water. We made it to the diamond mine just as it was closing. It's just a big open field called "the crater", plowed in rows where you can dig or pan for gems as much as you like. It was easy to see how you could get caught up in searching for diamonds. We left wishing that we knew about the Queen of Diamonds Hotel, it looked pretty charming. OK, so we didn't find any diamonds, we didn't actually know what we were looking for in any case. When we stopped in the "rock shop" and saw what we should have been looking for, we settled for some rough garnets that came from Alabama. At 75 cents a piece, I thought they were fair enough. The real gem around there is the state park the mine is in. Horseback riding, and canoeing through the woods, or driving through like we did is gorgeous and the air is clean and sweet. The fella in the rock shop told us to check out the catfish at the Fish Net in Arkadelphia and let me tell you, that gumbo, catfish and hushpuppy dinner was unbelievably good. Speaking of puppies, the good news is that the folks in Florida who lost their puppy found their puppy. The bad news is that they found him last June, the sign I saw in the Tom Thumb (See March 9) was an old sign that no one had bothered to take down. As far as I know, the people who found the puppy in Alabama still have him. One bright side is that they really like the puppy and I think they may just keep him. :)
March 96 Trip
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