Last weekend was a bit unusual for a first summer weekend at the lake. With all the crazy this Spring (bathroom renovation, musicals, graduation, etc.) we hadn’t made it to the lake to have the boat unwinterized, so therefore we couldn’t go out on the water.
Another unfortunate consequence of not being at the lake for a few months was the fact that we had not had a chance to do our annual Spring bug kill. So after our delicious lunch at the Princess, we made a stop at the nearby Dollar General for bug bombs and drove back to the cabin to set them off. Which meant that we had to kill a couple of hours away from the cabin. And since we weren’t able to go out in the boat, Tripp suggested we make a trip into town.
Let the adventure begin!
The closest nearby “town” is Cookson. And by town I mean that it has a post office, a Methodist church, a general store, and a couple of restaurants. But we needed some outdoor Bug-Be-Gone which required a trip to the Ace Hardware in Vian which is about a 20 minute drive south on Highway 82. So we all loaded up in Tripp’s truck (including our temporary canine houseguest, Rupert) and set off for town.
If you’ve never been to this part of the state, it’s really quite beautiful. The rolling hills and lush green woods are in stark contrast to what many people think of when they imagine Oklahoma and the whole “wind comes sweeping down the plains” thing.
Vian, Oklahoma is a quaint little town with a charming (if brief) downtown. Vian fun fact #1 – It was the location for a scene in the 1974 movie, Where the Red Fern Grows. Cool huh?!
(Please disregard my mutant big toe.)
While Tripp was talking the ear off the owner of the Ace Hardware, Kelsey I went to check out the Vian Sundry Store. It was closed. So we decided to visit Meme’s Treasures instead. Not much there for me, but if you’re looking for back issues of Traditional Home or Southern Living this place is the jackpot.
After Kelsey and I were able to pull Tripp away from the hardware store, he told us how he scored a bottle of contraband Malathion and was anxious to get back to the cabin to do some serious bug killing. (My husband is obviously not too concerned with being “green” when it comes to killing bugs. Especially when his wife spent the first half of the day ranting to him about all the spiders and daddy long legs creeping around the cabin.) But alas, we had only been gone for about 30 minutes and still had an hour and a half to kill.
Tripp thought it might be fun to take the long way home.
The first stop – Little Sallisaw Creek and City Park.
Little Sallisaw Creek is a 40-mile long tributary of the Arkansas River and the park is a beautiful recreation area for wading, swimming, and fishing. We drove up to the bridge and got out to get a good look at the spillway. We also thought Rupert could use a potty break. You should have seen the looks my husband got from the nearby fishermen. Here was my beloved, ever masculine husband walking this seriously unmacho little Westie named Rupert.
In his khaki shorts and pink polo shirt no less.
At least he wasn’t wearing his “good” flip-flops.
So after I took 47 pictures of the creek and Rupert finished his business, we headed off for the next leg of our journey. But first we made a pit stop at the “sketchest” (Kelsey’s word) EZ Mart on the planet to get a coke (and by “coke” I mean any flavor of carbonated fountain drink). I got a Dr. Pepper. It seemed appropriate. Hadn’t drunk Dr. Pepper in probably 20 years, but when in Rome you know. Or Sallisaw. And while in line to pay, we overheard the little gal behind us telling a friend about her 4 year-old boy getting bit on the big toe by a 21” copperhead snake, “It swole up twice it’s size!”
I bet her husband doesn’t own a pink polo shirt. Or “good” flip-flops.
Anyway, back on the road we set out for our next destination Marble City, Oklahoma. We travelled along Highway 17 and passed by Brushy Creek State Park.
***My apologies for the less than stellar iPhone photos. I failed to charge the battery of my camera before we left home. Note to self…always keep camera battery charged for impromptu adventures.***
Once we got to Marble City (a wide spot in the road as my dad would say), it felt more like a ghost town than someplace a person would live. But I guess it’s on the map because of all the lime, gravel, and rock mining in the area.
The final leg of our adventure took us through the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge – a beautiful wooded area prized for it’s waterfowl, deer, and elk habitat. And then just like that we were back in our own neck of the woods. It was the perfect way to spend the afternoon with my pink shirt sporting husband and adventurous daughter.
Next time you have the chance, I highly recommend taking the long way home. And be sure to charge your camera battery just in case.