The entire day was overcast and Kyle and I were in one of our hurries—a hurry to the west so we could feel some accomplishment. But in our haste we missed a lot on the Mother Road, forsaking the parts of the original byway and the access roads for the highway. Also, we woke up so early to make our getaway from The Redwood Motel, by the time we got to Litchfield, Missouri, nothing was open. We were then molested by a pair if Illinois finest. Kyle and I continued on to cross the state border into St. Louis, where we visited the Gateway Arch together, and then separated to take in the city. I was feeling so beat—rain had let loose, the area around the Arch was all commercial and boring, and the Mississippi River smelled like a jock’s sweaty, dirty feel being set on fire. Kyle and I met back up around lunch and took in O.T. Hodge Chile Parlour. It was O.K., if you like Hormel chili. I was done—I had to leave.
My first assessment of St.Louis was unfair. I wasn’t in the right spot and I never goto explore the city. Subsequent trips there would prove to me how wrong I was about St. Louie.
Kyle and I actually stayed on Route 66, but bypassed a lot, including Meramec Caverns, a cool, peaceful hike inside Mother Earth. I think we were feeling so lost and defeated by Route 66 we were both thrown into a funk, which is why we stopped in the middle of nowhere and stayed at a motel just across from a truck stop/diner that no longer exists. To make matters worse, I couldn’t fall asleep until 1 a.m.