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Monday, December 10, 2012

A Weekend Trip to Oklahoma

Jay, the grandson of our good friends, Jim and Sandy, is a senior in high school and plays on his school's football team. The team played in the Class 5A Oklahoma state championship football game on December 1st, and we felt that milestone accomplishment was worthy of our support.
 
So we made the trip to Oklahoma for the game. Initially, we were going to ride with Jim and Sandy; but the two couples ultimately decided to drive separately. Part of the reason for that was concerns over having enough space in one vehicle for all of us to take everything we wanted to take. Another concern was, for lack of a better term, scheduling conflicts.
 
Jim and Sandy are early risers. We're not. Not by a long shot. They were planning to leave at 6 AM on Friday and drive straight through to Tulsa, where Jay and his family live. Doug and I opted to leave on Thursday afternoon. We drove 240 miles and stayed overnight in Effingham, Illinois, knowing full well that Jim and Sandy would probably pass us the next day.
 
We called them when we got on the road Friday morning, and they were only an hour behind us.
 
Crazy people.
 
We kept looking over our shoulder as we drove that day, expecting our friends to pass us at any moment. They didn't pass us, but they did arrive in Tulsa ahead of us. I know you're wondering how that happened.
 
Well, I had our GPS set to avoid toll roads. It's not that we mind paying tolls...well, we do; but that's not the main reason. We find toll roads stressful and dangerous, unless you have the pass that lets you shoot through the toll plazas. And we don't. So we just try to avoid them. Anyway, Oklahoma must be the Toll Road Capital of the world. The most direct route to our destination was a toll road; but our GPS, following the instructions we had programmed into it, took us on a roundabout route to avoid the toll road. As a result, Jim and Sandy beat us to Tulsa by about a half-hour.
 
But we enjoyed our little detour, and we did arrive in time to go out for supper with them and Jay's dad.

Here are some pictures from the trip:

IMG_6781_Pipe-Shaped_Cloud_on_way_to_Oklahoma
Can you see a smoking pipe in this cloud formation? It was more defined when I first saw it but had changed some before I could get the camera out.

IMG_6784_Tulsa_Sunset_through_Windshield
This is the sunset as we were entering Tulsa on Friday night.

We had time to kill on Saturday, before the football game that night. My dad's dad had lived in Bristow, Oklahoma, not far from Tulsa, and was buried in the Bristow City Cemetery. He had died before I was born. I had never seen his grave and wanted to find it since we were so close. It's a big cemetery, but I had done a little research ahead of time, and we were able to find the grave without too much trouble.

IMG_6789_Bristow_City_Cemerery_Where_Roy_Banter_Buried_Bristow_OK
Entrance to the Bristow City Cemetery

The weather couldn't have been better for the football game. The temperatures on Saturday were in the mid-seventies. At the game that night, it was definitely cooler than that; but I don't think it went below the mid-fifties.

Here are a few pictures from game night.

IMG_6829_Oklahoma_5A_State_Football_Championship_Game
The contenders

IMG_6822_Oklahoma_5A_State_Football_Championship_Game
The location

IMG_6845_Oklahoma_5A_State_Football_Championship_Game
The watchers

IMG_6812_Oklahoma_5A_State_Football_Championship_Game
The players (Jay is number 56 in the black shirt.)

IMG_6818_Oklahoma_5A_State_Football_Championship_Game
I have to confess here that I know virtually nothing about football. I'm totally lost without the television commentators telling me what's happening on the field. It looks to me like somebody yells "hut" and chaos ensues. Above is one of the chaos pictures.

Jay's team was ahead 8 to 7, going into the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, the the other team won with a score of 24 to 8. Let's just say they were busy in that fourth quarter.

We stayed in Tulsa the next morning, long enough to have brunch with Jay and the rest of the Tulsa family. We wanted to make sure Jay knew we were proud of him and the way he had played, even though his team hadn't come away with the state championship.
 
We left Tulsa a few minutes ahead of Jim and Sandy, and they breezed by us within an hour. Both couples stayed at the same hotel in Effingham that night, but we didn't make connections. They had arrived about an hour ahead of us, and they left about an hour earlier than we did the next morning.
 
It was a long trip for a short visit. But it was fun.


11 comments:

  1. really nice of you to show support for him and his team! sorry they lost, but what a great experience! and you saw more sights than the toll-road takers, i bet!

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  2. That was nice of you to make that long trip. Jim and Sandy must be really good friends.... BUT--I'm sure that young man appreciated it that you were there... Sorry they lost---but just getting to 'state' is really good!!!!!

    We are doing something tomorrow that we don't usually do. We are leaving about 4 a.m. (Yawn) ---and driving straight to the beach.. It will take us about 12 hours since we stop alot and since GE doesn't drive fast... We usually go half way and make the trip in 2 days. BUT--we are closing on Dad Adams' house this afternoon in Hendersonville, TN---so we really didn't have a choice since our beach reservations have been made for a long time... Say a little prayer for us.. .Okay????

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  3. Theresa - Yes, we enjoyed our detour route. We took a toll road the next day, to the cemetery in Bristow; and it was a harrowing experience. So we found a way back to Tulsa without using it. It's hard to avoid toll roads in Oklahoma. They're everywhere.

    Betsy - Jim and Sandy ARE good friends, and they share their kids and grandkids with us. If they'd given an award to the player with the most fans from the furthest away, I think Jay would have won it. Besides us and his grandparents from Indiana, his aunt and her friend were there from Chicago.

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  4. So nice to see the photos from this trip. I had already pictured them in my mind's eye when you told me about it in email. I do indeed see the smoking pipe. Darn clouds never hold still while you set up the camera, do they? :)

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    1. Hilary - Thanks for humoring me with regard to the smoking pipe. I wish I'd snapped it when I first saw it. I spent too much time thinking about it. Then more time getting the camera ready to go. When will I learn...snap first and think later. :)

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  5. A very nice post, Linda. It really meant alot to us that you were willing to make that loooong trip for Jay's game. I am a little surprised that your account of the trip didn't include the hysterical 1 1/2 hour trip we made back from the game with DD keeping us all in stitches. Hmmm, now that I think about it, it WAS past my bedtime so maybe me laughing at everything she said was more of a result of sleep deprivation than her funniness.

    I think probably the nicest thing you said to Jay was, "If you go to state in wrestling, we'll have to come back!" You really are such good friends to show our family (and, of course Akela, when she was alive) love that isn't ever "required" of friends. You bless us all with your friendship.

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    1. Sandra - I thought the post was getting a little long as it was, so I left out the part about riding back from the game with Jenny and the part about Doug's and my experience with the toll road on the way to the cemetery in Bristow. Besides, I had to leave you a little something to write about on your own blog. :)

      Thanks, always, for sharing your family with us. You've got some pretty great kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids.

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  6. Linda, that's great that you enjoyed your trip and met people you care for.

    By the way, this post of yours sounds so American. The American football which differs so much from the European football, school's football teams I know especially from American films, toll roads which are not that dense here... Sounds interesting. :)

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    1. Hi, Petra. I'm glad to give you a little "taste" of America. :) Toll roads aren't usually so numerous here, either. But Oklahoma is covered with them. Almost anywhere you wanted to go, a toll road was the most direct route.

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  7. You certainly had a fast trip to OK! That was so nice of you to support your friends grandson. You're great friends! I'm sure they appreciated you being there.

    I know how that goes trying to locate the camera when you're traveling and trying to decide to snap a pic. I've missed a lot! Thanks for sharing that pipe cloud AND all your wonderful pics :)

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    Replies
    1. Diane - We had a good time on that fast trip. As for the pipe cloud, I knew where the camera was. I just had trouble deciding that the shot was worth the effort. By the time I decided it was and got the camera out of the bag, the shape had disintegrated a bit. Thanks for the nice comments about the pictures.

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