We were up at 6:00 am, had a quick breakfast, finished buttoning up the coach, unhooked the electric and hooked the coach up to the truck and were pulling out of the RV park at 6:57 am (our goal was 7:00 am).
We made our way south to I-30 and then headed east toward Little Rock where we found our way to US 65 and followed it north into Missouri. Once in Missouri we took 265 to Animal Safari Road, which is the road that the Branson KOA, today’s destination, is located.
We made good time with 2 potty stops…one at a truck parking area on the side of the road and the other at McDonald’s where we each got a Kid’s meal.
We pulled into the Branson KOA just a few minutes after 12:00 pm and were checked in lickedy split! We were escorted to our site and before we were unhitched (we had the front jacks down) we were greeted by several of our Heartland family – Jay, Bob, Don & Cindy, Sally, Stella and Kevin. Sure makes a body feel good to get such a warm welcome. We chatted for a while but eventually we needed to finish unhitching the truck and getting set up.
A few weeks back I posted on Jay’s Facebook wall that we were going to go to Lambert’s Cafe and asked if he & Stella were interested in joining us….they were! And so were 20+ other couples! I ended up semi-organizing an outing for about 50 people to Lambert’s in Ozark, which is about 35 miles north of the park.
Unfortunately, Lambert’s doesn’t take reservations or have a banquet room. But, they did appreciate me calling on Monday to let them know that 57 Heartlanders would be inundating them about 4:30 pm on Wednesday afternoon.
My hat is off to Lambert’s as they did a FANTASTIC job of getting us seated very quickly! We took up 8 or so tables and service was quick, the food was great and the server at our table was exceptional! On top of all of that they gave me vouchers for 3 free meals (which I gave to some new owners that had never been to a rally before) AND they gave me a free appetizer platter that included hog jowl, fried catfish and corn bread which we just passed around to all the tables until it was gone. *Side note…I have never had hog jowl before…but dang…it’s good stuff. A lot like a thick piece of bacon.
We had 8 at our table and had a really great visit with all of them…but especially with one that we haven’t seen for several years. We ended up being the last to leave as we chatted for so long.
When we got back to the park we took a walk around the park, stopping several times along the way to chat with various groups that were gathered outside. Just before 9:00 pm we decided to head home and call it a night.
It’s SO good to be back with this group of people…we know most everyone…although there are a few that we’ve never met but I’m sure that by the end of the weekend we’ll know them much better!