Tuesday, March 12, 2019

2019 IBA JAX Pizza Party Adventure - Day 1 March 12, 2019

Oh boy!  Every year we've talked about going to the Jacksonville, FL Iron Butt Association Pizza Party but every year something came up, weather, family, whatever so we've never been.  2019 was going to be different.  We're going!!!  Yippee :-)

We recently relocated from St. George, UT to Tupelo, MS and Jax wasn't so far and was totally doable.  So we made plans and we departed our lovely Tupelo cottage on Tuesday, March 12 and headed southeast.  Our plan was to take as many secondary roads as possible and avoid interstate slabbing.  We were successful!

Surprisingly we left the house about the time we wanted and made our way out of Tupelo.  The first 50 miles or so were done on 4 lane highways and then we got onto the two lane country roads.   FUN! We haven't had much of an opportunity to ride lately with family issues, moving, moving, and moving again.  Then trying to get our cottage sorted out with some remodel construction and just stuff.  So we were both excited to get out on a real trip.

Well, since we haven't been riding a lot, my bootie needed several rests (besides I have a horrible seat on the bike that WILL BE corrected!).  Our first real stop was in Greensboro, AL where we gassed up the bikes and stopped for lunch at a local BBQ joint.  Yeah, Nick's Crispy Chicken! 

 Pretty much a dive but good food and lots of choices!
 Some of the local boys having lunch and a BS session.  Later one of the older dudes came out to our bikes to chat.  I think we made his day!
 Yeah, this is what I had.  And, no, I couldn't eat it all.  I managed about half the burger and maybe five fries.  I was surprised that Eric didn't go all native and order a huge bbq, chicken or shrimp lunch but he behaved and ate a BLT and only a few of my fries.
After lunch we headed out again on more small county two lane roads that took us through beautiful farmland and ranches.  We also saw a lot of extremely poor, rural Alabama.  Eye opening.  Another thing we saw a lot of was LITTER.  I mean a ton of litter, everywhere!!  What's up with that?  Geez, I grew up in the Give a Hoot, Don't Pollute campaigns and it was drilled in that you just don't litter.  I didn't take any photos but it was truly appalling and makes me very sad.  We need to re-educate people to Keep American Beautiful again.

So, back to the ride!  We started riding down smaller and smaller roads, which was fine with me until ... we ran out of pavement!  Ha!  Really?  Yes, really.  Eric had to remind me that I'm on an adventure bike with dual purpose tires.  No problem.  Well, just stay away from the wet, slickerly spots and you'll be fine.  Hahahahaha.

*note street tires on Eric's bike...

Fortunately it wasn't very long of a dirt ride.  It was just a surprise to us because the maps and routing software didn't say anything about no pavement!  Just part of the adventure.

Oh, forgot to mention the weather.  We started out in 50 degree weather with a few spits of rain here and there.  The weather only got better as we progressed through the day and moved further south.  After lunch, we had to remove clothing and open vents.  Lovely!  Our high for the day was about 78 degrees.

We had targeted Dothan, AL for our stop for the night and we arrived just about 5:30 pm.  Perfect, now time for cocktails and dinner.  There is a nice Mexican restaurant next door that gets good reviews so I suspect that will be dinner tonight.

We were pleasantly surprised at our home for the night, Red Roof Inn in Dothan, AL.  Recently renovated and very nice and best of all, inexpensive!!  Score.  Well, but for the construction workers above us, beside us and across the drive from us.  

Nice room and great looking bed!
Tomorrow we'll arrive at the Ramada Inn in Jacksonville, FL, the IBA host hotel and we are looking forward to seeing peeps we know, meeting new peeps and participating in some activities as well as telling stories and kicking tires in the parking lot.

JAX, here we come, ready or not!  Stay tuned for the next installment ;-)

Cletha Vaillancourt (yes, I finally changed my name)


  1. Sounds fun, Cletha! Looking forward to reading your blog again - it's been too long!! Litter....years ago my cousin came to visit us - she was from the mid-west. We were going down the highway and she rolled down her window and chucked out a bunch of garbage and I was shocked!! That was back in the early 80's and we already knew not to do that. She was shocked that I was shocked. LOL

    1. Yay, glad to be back blogging! Litter, can you believe it? Loving your photos, keep it up. Hope we cross paths sometime this year!

  2. Good to see you blogging. I've been riding, mostly with a National Parks Tour that I started in August. But I have not done very well documenting since my Spain/Portugal tour. Not that it has not been interesting... Maybe you'll get me past my writer's block. Enjoy!

  3. Great to see you riding again. Next year we'll make Jax.

    1. Thanks! Maybe we'll see you later this summer!