Day 2

28 May

Technical difficulties interfered with my blogging yesterday. Lee and I could not get the photo function to work. This necessitated calls to our IT department. We finally contacted a young tech named Gardner. After several calls back and forth, the problem was solved. A great IT department is a must in the modern business world.

View From the Pig Trail

Yesterday’s travels also took us through the Boston Mountains of Arkansas. I was unaware that there were Boston Mountains in Arkansas. It seems that two young men did early exploration in northwestern Arkansas – one was an uneducated mountain man, the other a Harvard grad. So, in the same mountainous area we have the O-Zarks and the Bostons. Not sure who named which.

The road we took through the Bostons is known as the Pig Trail, partly because it leads to Fayetteville, home of the University of Arkansas Pigs, and also because tires squeal like pigs as cars navigate the curves.

Welcome to Land of Terra

Who knows what they are?

As we came out of the mountain drive, we discovered an art colony/installation called Land of Terra. I really want to say the Land of Terra is like Rock City without the taste – but that’s not fair. Most of the artists work in glass or pottery and are quite talented. (We bought a face jug with raku glaze.)

Lovely from any angle!

But there is an overarching interest in gnomes and trolls and whimsies, scattered about the grounds. So, one can walk into different areas and find various figures lurking about – there is also a lot of colored glass and flowing water. There’s even a labyrinth and a grotto. It’s certainly worth a stop – the address is somewhere near Durham in northwest Arkansas.

Our next stop was supposed to be a brief tour of the wonders of Fayetteville – but stuff happened. First ,we hoped to see the great razorback statue on the Arkansas campus, maybe with Bobby Petrino nearby. Well, the giant statue was not so gigantic plus we were unable to approach the statue because of blocked roads, lot of tents and numerous guards. We guessed something else was going on because all this to-do seemed a little much for an unprepossessing statue of a pig. Further research points to the annual Wal-Mart Shareholders Meeting – there were a number of big Wal-Mart trucks around. Not joking.

I’m Popeye the Sailor Man

However, not far up the road was the promise of a Popeye statue at the Allen Packing Company in Springdale. Springdale turned out to be a lot like suburban Atlanta — traffic lights and traffic. We finally found the statue, behind a chain-link fence with no place to park except for a gated entrance-way. Lee got the picture, but it wasn’t worth the effort. We gave up on the homemade dinosaur and a second Popeye statue in Siloam Springs.

We pressed on to Tulsa and the wonders of Oral Roberts University. Foiled again. Tulsa is in the midst of major downtown roadwork. By the time we found our way to the hotel, we were not willing to venture back out. Besides, the route to Oral Roberts was one of the roads that was closed.

I hated to miss ORU. I’ve always been amazed at how Oral Roberts could take the demanding theology of the Bible and reduce it to a single, understandable sentence: “Send money to Oral Roberts.” I wanted to see the Prayer Tower where God held Oral hostage until supporters sent in eight million dollars for something or other. Alas, Lee and I had to make do with just being in Tulsa.

We just heard that Doc Watson died – a sad day for music lovers.

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