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Monday, March 21, 2005

This is time-travelling post 2 of 2. I could get used to this...

Having been lulled gently to sleep on Saturday night by the roaring din of Boeing 737s passing within a few hundred feet of my hotel room, I awoke on Sunday morning in need of a bit of fortification. So we checked out of the Sheraton Nul Points and headed straight for the local Waffle House. Lisa had promised me bacon covered in maple syrup, but in the end I plumped (which is an apt word) for the sausage and egg sandwiches with a side order of raisin toast. Big Sis meanwhile forewent the chance to eat fried food first thing in the morning, and chose instead to sit outside a sex shop and call her boyfriend.

Eating (and calling) done, we returned to downtown Oklahoma City in search of the Myriad Botanical Gardens. Unfortunately, what we found was a Harley Davidson convention and a basketball game, meaning the streets were full of bikers and people dressed in orange, and you couldn't park anywhere.

But undeterred, we drove around in circles for twenty minutes before pretending to be undercover basketball fans and paying five bucks to a man with a flag. The botanical gardens turned out to be very nice. Big Sis did a bit of sunbathing while Lisa and I attempted to take numerous self-timer photos of us looking squeezy in romantic settings, before being abused by a woman from the gift shop who tried to charge us six dollars to use her restrooms.

From there we drove to the state Capitol building, where Sis attempted to park in the Governor's parking space, before seeing a scary man in a black suit approaching, and changing her mind. We strolled around the building, looked at the oil wells, took some dodgy self-timer shots...


... and then went to Subway for lunch. The two sandwich-makers who served us were clearly thirsting for knowledge and keen to learn more of our homeland. They started by asking if England and France were two different places, and were surprised to hear that they are. I lost the will to live shortly afterwards. We sat down with the words "So France isn't in England??" still ringing in our ears, only to be interrupted halfway through our meal for the important question "Are U2 from England? I love U2!". We said yes, and kept eating. If they thought France was a small town just outside London, I didn't fancy trying to explain where Ireland is.

By this point it was 3:30pm. Big Sis, who had spent half the night watching The Weather Channel on cable, was convinced there were major storms and tornados heading our way, and that if we didn't leave Oklahoma by 4pm, we were likely to be hit by flying cows on the way home. So we made our getaway there and then. Unfortunately we got stuck in a lengthy traffic jam on the way back, and the drive ended up taking us five and a half hours.

It was particularly taxing, because with the clear skies, warm sun, and still, balmy weather we experienced for the entire journey, it became really quite hot in the car.