Today we had planned on hard driving getting us to Albequerque, NM. We got a bit of a later start, and when I realized that Route 66 passed through Joplin, MO we decided to spend some time exploring the Mother Road instead of pushing down the interstate. As you will see from some of the pictures it is harder and harder to find original landmarks from the glory days of "The Mother Road". In some places they have been restored, and in others like parts of Tulsa they are literally falling down. Because of how slow the moving was we left Route 66 in Tulsa and hopped back on the interstate, but here are some of the better pictures that help illustrate what this section of the trip looks like.
With storms causing traffic slowdowns and the extra time it took to follow Route 66 through Oklahoma where we didn't make nearly the distance we had hoped for, so with it looking like Amarillo would be even later than we hoped for we stopped at Lucielle's Roadhouse in Weatherford, OK for dinner. Located on Route 66 Lucielle's plays up the "Mother Road" theme with large displays and two restaurants, the more formal roadhouse dining room and bar, and a 50s style diner. The diner was closed when we got there around 9:00 pm so we ate in the lounge rather than the formal dining room.
I had a half order of chicken fingers, with a side salad. Lucille's serves their chicken fingers dinner with hush puppies as the starch which I felt no need to replace. I was a little surprised to see cylindrical hush puppies instead of the traditional balls, but the method allows for uniform cooking and a more consistent product. I was impressed with this touch, as well as the large chicken tenderloins used for the chicken fingers. I have had breasts from some chicken places that were not as large. The chicken was perfectly cooked, hot and juicy throughout, with a crispy coating that was just a touch greasier than I would prefer but not so greasy as to be off putting in the least. It was a good meal in a great setting, and you can tell the pride and care the staff takes in their service. Our waitress was attentive while still covering the rest of the bar area. It was a great stop on the Fat Boy Summer Road Trip.
Just after we took the above picture in Pampa, TX a thunderstorm hit us that was insane. Incredible winds started blowing large clouds of dust across the roadway, reducing visibility to nothing. Soon after rain joined the party and was coming down so hard that traffic slowed to less than 20 MPH on the Interstate, with even big rigs coming to a near stop and throwing on hazard lights to help other traffic see them in the storm. We eventually made it to our hotel a little after midnight to flickering lights and flooding that made actually getting into the hotels driveway a challenge. It was an adventure, but an exciting end to a great day on the Fat Boy Summer Road Trip 2014 exploring part of Route 66.