We're at a Rodeway Inn, Sweet Springs, MO. Put in 705 miles today, leaving Longmont, CO at 8 am, just a scant ½ hour behind schedule. We would have been fine if not for that one sprinkler zone not doing its due duty. Had to be adjusted. The Engineer wasn't about to come home to a dead lawn! So we sat in the idling car while he tinkered, adjusted, got soaked, and I must admit, a bit cranky. We were about to FINALLY leave when the light on the inverter (which was powering the TV, Wii, DVD player, laptop, all while recharging the DS batteries) turned RED. Not good. This took another 20 minutes of inventor engineering to make that light green again. But green it was, eventually. Off we went!
And as I wrote before in my love of road trips, we enjoyed the country unfolding in front of us as the miles disappeared from under us. It's been about four years since we've done this, and it shows. The kids are pretty independent now and I spend less of my time in, “Mom! I need_______” mode. This is a welcome change. The Engineer and I had some great conversations while watching the country change from flat plain to grass prairie to wooded hills. We enjoyed the spying on small towns and big cities, noticing how much of Kansas City boasts historic, renovated old brick buildings. And we found barbeque.
Fans of both America's Test Kitchen and Guy Fieri's “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” we knew plenty about Kansas City's claim to fame. However, I was somewhat skeptical that we'd find true BBQ, just a few, convenient miles off I-70. I should have known that The Engineer would come through, as he always does. Arthur Bryant's was a 1/2 mile from the exit. Once we entered, we knew immediately that we were in the right place. There was a long line. As we snaked our way to the front, studying the menu, we watched the interaction between customers and servers. I'm not exaggerating when I compare this to the "Soup Nazi" of Seinfeld fame. If you don't give your order fast enough or accurately enough, watch out.
Our family enjoyed a marvelous slab of ribs, and the one order of fries would have been enough to feed my entire cross country team. The people watching was amazing, and by the time we left, security guards were patrolling the parking lot. I'm thinking they run pretty brisk business.
So on our way home, I do believe another stop is in order. Finding hometown gems like this is part of the whole allure of the road warrior. We're looking forward to what great eats we might find tomorrow.