Tuesday, May 22
Well, we have mixed feelings about Kansas. We have been staying at KOA kampgrounds, and they have been very nice and run by very friendly helpful people. Well, the Garden City, KS KOA is their low-rent cousin. And our impressions of the state were not helped by passing a large feedlot a few miles down the road, where we could clearly see bloated corpses of cattle lying unattended in the corrals. Or by passing over a creek which was virtually filled with garbage -- old rotting mattresses, car parts, you know the sort of thing. Right there at roadside, clearly visible to all passers by! "Have these Kansasians no shame?" we thought. Plus, the splendid open plains of Colorado became replaced by slightly scruffy-looking farmsteads. The final straw was the "scenic overlook" proclaimed by a highway sign. Folks, this is flat country and the scenic overlook was on a very, very slight rise. And what was the view that it overlooked? Another stinking feedlot. A huge well nigh Brobdingnagian feedlot that seemed to stretch for miles. Phew! Only a Kansasian could want to admire that view, we thought.
As we got farther east though the state started looking much prettier and better kept. We actually took a picture somewhere south of Topeka!
Our drive through Kansas was complicated by, for the first time on this trip, getting lost. Twice. Once we didn't catch State 156 from US 56 in Big Bend, which meant we drove due eastward instead of angling to the northeast to catch I70 west of Topeka. When we realized our error, we decided to take I135 north to Topeka where we could catch I70. Well, somehow we got onto I135 headed south instead of north, and got more than halfway to Wichita before realizing our error. So we decided to take State 50 angling up to Lawrence. Which was fine, except that the intersection of I135 and 50 is all torn up from construction, and we had to go a good 10 miles out of our way on a detour. All this meant that, in order to reach the hotel in time for the evening festivities, we had to drive like a bat out of hell and stop for nothing. Hey, you're lucky you have one picture today!!