Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Day 11 Branson (MO) to Cuba (MO) 28th June

The first fifty miles was backtracking to Springfield on the 66, we had departed at midday yesterday.

At Marshfield Dr Edwin Hubble will be remembered for his contribution in bringing outer space that much closer to earth, a replica of the Hubble Telescope erected in the centre of town.

Lush fields line the Mother Road which skirts alongside the Interstate 44 north. Today we have only touched the superhighway for a short 2 miles between sections of Route 66 which at times showed the old dual lane road.

Through Conway, Phillipsberg we caught a glimpse of businesses stopped in their tracks... time and vines showing the real age of some of these disused buildings.

The Munger Moss Motel in Lebenon is listed as being operational back in 1946. Along with the typical neon sign board out front, rooms here have route specific themes.

Across the Gasconade River on a 1923 Pony Truss bridge we drove on through Hazelgreen and one of dozens of small churches dotted across the state of Missouri - Methodism seems to be the flavour in this state!

There were numerous large and fasinating antique stops en route today, from original to fully restored, the range was breath taking.

Laquey and Buckhorn were full of old relic buildings...   Waynesville, had a Frog on the hill!... why?... who knows and who cares... this is the Mother Road!  

Till now America’s main street looked like it had been built around all natural obstacles... the whole reason she was discarded when the superhighways came through. Today though we saw the first signs of this new age of thinking on the old road, cutting through a hill. Perhaps this was the first sign of the road ahead for the Interstate Highways.

By 6.30pm we had made St James, fifteen miles short of our planned overnight stop. Diana’s Diner is in none of the guides... but we stumbled on it and lapped up the new/old atmosphere, another insight into the many faces of Route 66. Our servers probably had little idea of the history and the contribution an old style Diner like this contributes to life on the road, but we sure enjoyed every ounce of the home main chocolate pie!

Before Cuba, is Fanning, another landmark of disproportionate proportions! The world’s largest rocking chair for that larger than life Grandpa!

Connie bought the old Wagon Wheel Motel in 2009, in a state of disrepair we’ve come to understand. It was still open but at $20 a night was nothing flash. Hundreds of woman hours... and dollars later, she has restored the motel to its former glory. No motel has been continuously open longer on this line and certainly now there is no problem finding occupants every night.


There’s just one more state remaining on our journey, Illinois and all going well we’ll cross into that sometime tomorrow.

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