While in New York City recently, we visited the 9/11 Memorial. The Memorial is incredibly well done, and the visit to both the Memorial and to St. Paul’s Cathedral nearby is a most moving experience.
Linda and Haltom Higgs, along with Nick Purdy, joined us for a relaxing afternoon on Lake Ouachita.
After days of very heavy rains, Lake Ouachita’s water level climbed to within about 4-5 feet of running over the spillway.
Click here to view some photographs from around the Mountain Harbor Resort Marina Basin.
We’ve been talking about it for over a year, and now we were finally able to make it happen. We joined with Anita’s sister Barb Unanski and Bob Matthews, along with Larry and Mary Cockerell and Larry’s brother and sister-in-law, Carey Don and Carolyn Cockerell, for a quick trip to Newland’s on the White River for some fine trout fishing and terrific company.
Everyone arrived at Newland’s Resort on Thursday afternoon ready to party! Carey and Carolyn won the prize for the longest drive, coming from their home near Dallas, while Larry and Mary enjoyed the two hour trip from their home on Table Rock Lake, MO. The reunion was fantastic!
After settling into our large 4-bedroom cottage, we headed down the road to the “178 Club” in Bull Shoals, AR, for one of those “never eat anything bigger than your head” dinners, gorging on their fine appetizers of Alligator, Calamari, Crawfish, and “Bang Bang Shrimp” (the crawfish were the favorite). The pasta dishes were literally as big as your head and very rich, while the steaks and seafood were also generously-proportioned. After waddling back to the cottage, we settled in for an evening of drinks and stories, and lots of laughs.
Friday morning, we rolled out of bed for the fishing, meeting our guides at the River at 7:30 am. The morning was foggy and slightly drizzly, but we never had the rain we had somewhat expected, and by afternoon, we were enjoying a bit of sunshine. Everyone had a great morning fishing (Mary and Carolyn slept in and chose a quiet morning of R&R – reading and relaxing).
All had stories to tell by the time we gathered back at the cottage for our lunches prepared by Newland’s (I think they actually came from the 178 Club). Then, back at fishing until about 3 pm or so. Everyone came home with a limit of trout, which we put into bags of water to freeze for the trip home.
After nearly killing ourselves with food and spirits on Thursday, the trip to the 178 Club was a tad more restrained on Friday. Besides, we were all exhausted from hauling in lunkers on the River all day! Another good evening of visiting and then a relatively early night after watching a DVD of Zydeco dance lessons. Nobody got up to try the moves, although Barb was gyrating a bit to the music.
After a large breakfast on Saturday morning, the crew followed Carey Don’s and Carolyn’s Dallas-bound lead, packed up, paid up, and hit the road. Good-bye’s suck, and we’re already missing everyone. There are mutterings of another trip in the fall, however, and it can’t come soon enough!
On our way home, we, along with Barb and Bob, visited the Bull Shoals Visitors Center, the Forrest and Nina Wood museum in Flippin, AR, and we stumbled upon an incredibly neat place along “The Art Odyssey” 2013 Tour, which we had no idea about until we saw the small sign along Arkansas Highway 235.
There, we discovered “The Hilltop Forge”, where Bob Patrick creates incredible stuff in his blacksmith shop, and where Mary Patrick creates mosaics and beautiful handwoven baskets. (See #15 on The Art Odyssey link. Their home is here: 36°8’22” N 92°51’5″ W). What a treat it was to hang out there to enjoy these delightful people and their art. (Update 2017: It appears that the website for The Hilltop Forge is gone. So, they may not still be in business.)
Anita, Winnie, and I joined a group of Master Gardeners from Hot Springs and Montgomery County for a photo hike from the Methodist Church on Mountain Harbor Road to the “Bus Road” takeout along LOViT’s Section 2 toward the Tompkins Bend Trailhead. Our group of Al and Diann Gathright and Leslie ? forged ahead of the others, but we still had time to take in some relaxation on the benches along the way. Here are some photos from the hike.