Getting Hung Up On Metaphorical Left Turns To A Nuclear Missile

It seems like it’s been a month since I’ve written anything except a grocery list but it really hasn’t been a month even though the last thing I wrote that wasn’t a grocery list was last month but I wrote it on the last day of the month so it’s really been just a week and so much has happened in that week. Days came and went and I went and came to Atlanta and then home and now I’m in someone else’s home until next week taking care of their sweet puppy who weighs in at roughly sixty pounds which is more than half of what I weigh in at when I bother to weigh in though there aren’t many places that require me to weigh in upon arrival, but I think it is safe to say that it’s a big puppy and it is a she and her name is Lily.

Lily, the giant puppy

So while I watch Lily devour one of the sofa cushions (just kidding, Susan (Susan is the owner of said large puppy), she’s chewing on something else), I thought I would catch you up on my comings and goings as said comings and goings relate to travel as opposed to other things where those words might be used. And did you notice that once again I made use of the embedded parenthetical phrase? I amaze myself sometimes, but not this time because  I could see that embedded parenthetical  phrase taking shape before it actually took shape.

As you may recall, I accompanied my friend to Atlanta over the weekend so she could attend the wedding of some relative. We turned a six or seven hour drive into a two day drive by stopping as much as possible. That last sentence is not quite true but we did stop quite a bit. Our first stop was at the Georgia welcome station because we both really had to make a pit stop. While there, we perused the various pamphlets for more possible stops besides the possible stops we already we’re possibly going to stop at. Once armed with more pieces of paper, we headed north until we spied the giant peanut monument.

We had arrived in Ashburn, Georgia, which we were soon to learn is the home of the Fire

We missed the Fire Ant Festival because it wasn’t the fourth weekend in March

Ant Festival. We were not there for the Fire Ant Festival which was a good thing because the Fire Ant Festival only takes place on the fourth weekend of March. Apparently, the Fire Ant Festival is full of wild and wacky activities and according to Penny Baker at the Chamber of Commerce draws about 30,000 people each year. So next year if you happen to be anywhere near Ashburn, Georgia on the fourth weekend of March, you might want to stop by.

We drove past the world’s giant peanut monument because it would have involved left

Even though we didn’t stop here until later, here’s the giant peanut monument.

turns and we thought we could make right turns to get there on our way out of town. I once  read that the secret to life is no left turns. It was a touching compelling essay about some guy’s grandfather and while I was touched and often avoid left turns when driving if I can, metaphorical left turns in life are often the best turns your life can take so while I tend to avoid left turns while driving if possible, I often take the metaphorical left turns in life. We would have made the driving left turn to the giant peanut if there hadn’t been another point of interest to see further down the road.

You can’t tell from this picture, but we parked right in front!

That other point of interest was the Crime and Punishment Museum which was not a museum about Dostoyevsky but about prisons and capital punishment. Once again, I experienced the parking space karma that I am known for by getting a primo spot right in front of the museum. Of course, it helped that the museum was closed. As was the Chamber of Commerce across the street where we were to start the tour. However, the sign on the Chamber’s door said it would re-open at 1 p.m. and seeing how it was 12:45 we decided to sit on the curb in the parking lot and eat the carrot sticks and turkey sandwiches I had packed for the trip.

Penny Baker holding the key to the jail door.

We also took some photographs and then Penny Baker showed up. She explained that the museum had been closed for repainting, but they had finished the painting the day before and even though the museum wasn’t scheduled to reopen until Monday, she would give us a tour. We also got her life story, so I know about her divorce and that she once worked for the postal service and that she was born in Columbus, Georgia, worked in Atlanta, then Minnesota, then Washington, DC, and then moved to Indiana to be with the guy who would become her second and current husband and then retired to Ashburn where she lucked in to the Chamber job and now you know her life story, too.

Our private tour of the museum was very interesting and we felt like celebrities because

In the pokey for making an illegal metaphorical left turn.

we got a private tour. The building was actually a jail. the sheriff and his family lived on the first floor and the jail cells were on the second floor. They had the last meal menus for executed prisoners framed on the wall. One guy wanted two cheesecakes. I’m not sure what I would want for my last meal but I think I would order at least three days of food, maybe more and I would eat very slowly.

There was also an electric chair and we learned that the electric chair was invented by Thomas Edison who thought it would be a more humane way to execute prisoners than by hanging because he thought it would only take five seconds of electric current. It turned out that it took four minutes of continuous electric current to kill a man and witnesses could smell flesh and hair burning. Edison witnessed an execution and when he realized how long it took, he immediately regretted his invention. I tend to think if he hadn’t invented it, someone else would have.

No worries, it wasn’t plugged in.

Much as we hated to leave Penny Baker, we had more stuff to see, so we bade our farewells and headed towards the world’s giant peanut monument. There was a placard but I didn’t read it, so I cannot tell you who built it or why except we were in peanut territory so maybe that was the reason and though you can get a glimpse of the monument as you fly by on I-75 you can’t really get a photograph unless you take the time to take the road between Pizza Hut and Zaxby’s down past a couple of factories until you come to a dirt road and there in all it’s glory it is.

Seems pretty clear.

After our brief stop at the

Me, standing on the trap door.

giant peanut because there was no gift shop or cafe or anything really except the giant peanut, we got back on the interstate and headed to Cordele where we saw the Confederate Nuclear Missile though I’m pretty sure the nuclear warheads were removed before it was placed in the parking lot between a gas station and a Krystal hamburger place or maybe not, this is the south after all. And apparently, that little patch of land between the gas station and the Krystal hamburger place is known far and wide or maybe just by locals or anyone who stops at that gas station or Krystal hamburger place as Confederate Launch Pad #1. It was a bit anti-climatic though not everyone can say they’ve seen a confederate nuclear missile. It’s quite possible that most people don’t want to say that, but that’s probably because they are no metaphorical left turn kind of people.

After ending up in the pokey and almost being electrocuted and hung, I needed a nap.

We still had a few miles to go before we slept but I will have to suspend the suspense of what happened next because I need to feed the giant puppy because she is starting to act like she might eat me if I don’t feed her, so I’ll pick up my traveling tale of whether or not left turns were taken the next time unless I become puppy chow between now and the next time.

The Confederate Nuclear Missile by the Krystal hamburger place though I’m pretty sure the nuke parts were removed before it got here.

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34 thoughts on “Getting Hung Up On Metaphorical Left Turns To A Nuclear Missile

    • Which is so much better than Queen for a Day but not quite as grand as the Queen of Soul which I would never be named because I prefer not to sing in front of other living beings and other living beings prefer that I do not sing in front of them unless I am singing with a group so large that it would be impossible to tell which voice was mine although under the right alcoholic circumstances I will occasionally sing a few words of whatever is playing on the radio or iPod that has been docked in a docking station.

    • There’s always beer in my fridge though I’m not near my fridge right now and I learned today that a place near my house called The Freezer, because it is a little eatery in what used to be a commercial freezer for the shrimpers in the area and interestingly the only things this place serves are steamed shrimp and blue crabs except on Sunday afternoons when they have chicken wings and Wednesday nights when they have steak or they used to I’m not sure since I haven’t been there on a Wednesday night in quite awhile, has the coldest beer around these parts and it’s cheap and since I’m sometimes called a shrimp, I fit right in there.

  1. Do periods frighten you? No, Not those! I’m surprised you didn’t pass out during that freezer soliloquy. All in one run-down….er, run-on sentence! You feed the dog, I’ll look up Ashburn.

    • Periods do not frighten me, but since they (yes, those) have not been part of my life for four years now, I have found it to be quite liberating and, in much the same way, over the course of the last few months, I have found that freeing myself from the bonds of periods has fueled a bit of writing creativity and of course, it is much easier to write without periods than it is to talk without the periods, and it does help that I do have a bit of a love affair going on with commas.

    • Oh, thanks, I don’t believe I have ever been anyone’s drug before though I may have driven some people to drugs or maybe they think I’m on drugs and now I’m wondering what kind of drug I am – gateway, hallucinogenic, ace inhibitor, mellowness inducer, inhibition releaser, baby aspirin, and since you are what you ingest or thats what they say, I have ingested some of the above during my life. Of course, everyone was doing it. It was the 70s after all, and the 80s and some of the 90s, but now it’s mostly wine and tequila and rum, mostly, but not all together unless we add a little rum to the wine toss in some fruit and call it sangria. Oh, now I think I need to come up with a drink called sandylikeabeach!

  2. You know, I think I read that the nukes from the Confederate Nuclear Missile site were ground into hamburger and sold at the Krystal hamburger place.

  3. Elyse, if we’re going to go out in a blaze of glory road trip style, I’m thinking Thelma & Louise, plus they had the added bonus of a young Brad Pitt to keep them company for awhile.

  4. Pingback: The Splendiferous Soliliquation of a Selebratory Sirthday | Guapola

  5. Happy Birthday Sandy! Hope you can sretch out the fun for a least a few days. :+)

    I enjoyed your post a little creepy nap area. Also the electric chair yikes. Sounds like a fun trip. I’ve been living in a small town the museum is closed in the winter. When my Dad was visiting a note on the door said to just call and they would come down and open the museum for a tour. I thought it was pretty cool to be the only ones there.

    • Thanks, Starla! It was very cool to be the only visitors and the lady at the Chamber of Commerce locked her office to give us a tour because the regular tour givers didn’t answer their phones when she called to see if they could hurry down and give a tour. Small towns are wonderful.

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