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Day 12 – April 22nd (Friday)
As is Normal for us, we were up early and moving…    We got on the road just after 5:00am (EDT).  Even though we are in Central Time, we are expressing all times to match our home times of EDT).  We stopped in town, filled up our coffee mugs and hit the road.

Our original plan called for us to drop off I-10 and then drive along Coastal route 90 from Slidell LA to almost Mobile before getting back on  I-10 and continuing on in to Florida.  As I looked over the route last night (to see where we may stay) I realized my boo-boo.   IF, we drove it the 1st day, we would be very late getting to a room.   If we stopped to drive it the 2nd day, it would be dark as we passed through.   At this point, we were not prepared to commit a 3rd day so decided to play it by ear.   It turned out Ok as you will see!  🙂

We took back routes around Houston.  Started on TX 21 from San Marcos through Uhland and Bastrop to Paige where we picked up US-290.   In Bastrop, we stopped at a Buc-ee’s!  Sharon and Denny keep praising this travel store as a “destination” and though it was early (6:00am) it was open so we stopped to see what it is about.  All I can say is WOW, they have it all….    Lyn sent a text to Sharon saying “we stopped at Buck-ees and now we understand!

We followed US 290 out to Brenham where we picked up TX 105 and we stayed with this all the way to Beaumont TX.  This was a very nice road and we really enjoyed the drive through the countryside and the little towns along the way.  It was 7:40 when we got gas in Navasota and were looking for a place for breakfast.   We wanted a sit down like an IHOP, Denny’s etc or a country restaurant.  We passed through Conroe at 8:40 and all we spotted was fast foods in the touristy lake region.  It was a very pretty area but no food!  9:15 am through Cleveland and still no luck.  At 9:30, a police officer pulled in front of us and had us wait on the shoulder for a wide load coming through.  Several lined up behind us and it was almost 15 minutes before a huge piece of industrial machinery passed by us and we were released.  Finally, at 9:45 in the village of Liberty, we found a little place called Simply Country!   What a great place to eat!!!   Very cute inside, reasonable prices, home made and generous portions!  Lyn had eggs and the trimmings and I had the Biscuits and Gravy.  Superb!

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After breakfast, we continued on in to Beaumont where we picked up I-10 at 11:15.   Very pleased with the scenic route and so nice to be off Interstate and miss Houston!   Back on the IS, now it is time to make time!  We filled up just west of Layfayette and shortly after crossed the 20 mile long Atchafalaya Basin Bridge.   This is a nice scenic stretch without services.  We encountered a slow down as a result of traffic coming off the I-10/I-12 bridge at Baton Rouge and once passed, stopped & picked up lunch at 2:30.  Looked like we could reach the scenic coastal route 90 about 4:00 pm.  I decided to continue on and do what we could and then stop for the night.  We were too close to just skip it and part of that route would be something.   And it Was!!!

We drove along the coast for about 1 1/2 hours and it was Gorgeous!  The road was right next to the beach and had many pull offs where you could stop, wander the beach or just take photos.  I took quite a few and about 5:20, we were at Biloxi so we turned back north to I-10 and grabbed a room at the 1st exit.  Both tired, we ordered a pizza in and then retired for the night.

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Day 13 – April 23rd (Saturday)
Final day, GPS indicates that we have maybe 9 1/2 hours of driving so should be home mid day, even with a breakfast stop.  We hit the road at 4:20 after grabbing some coffee at the Kangaroo Convenience Mart.

Passing through Mobile AL at 5:16 and Pensacola at 6:15.  Likely would have been a scenic stretch but we were traveling in the dark.  Near Crestview FL, we stopped for fuel and breakfast at Waffle House just before 7:00 am.  The fuel would last us all the way home so we would not need another fuel stop.

We continued on I-10 until Tallahassee, where we exited on to US 319 N to wards GA.  We crossed the border around 10:00 and at Thomasville, switched over to US 84.  Through Valdosta to Waycross where we grabbed lunch at 12:15.  From here, we picked up US 82, a short stretch of GA 99 and picked up I-95 North for the last 65 miles home.  We arrived home at 2:30 pm.  We really enjoyed the routes of the Interstate for the relaxing nature and scenery.

It was nice to be home…..    Great vacation but always pleasant to be “Home”.

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