Thursday, March 31, 2016

Alabama Nov 2015 Mobile AL A Nice but brief stop From Nov 2015

Just as with MS, we had no plans to stop in AL but then we thought that driving right through Mobile would be such a waste of an opportunity to see a new place that we'd stop.  And we were glad we did.
First we would need a place to leave the MoHo all day so as we entered AL from MS we stopped at a Welcome Center.  One of the best ones we have found, the welcome center was chock full of information and a very helpful staff member.  After gathering pamphlets for use in 2016 when we head west, I asked about parking in Mobile.  It was through this very well informed employee that I found out we could park in the Civic Center, for free, all day and she gave me directions.  So armed with this information we drove into Mobile, found the Civic Center, situated the pets and turned on the fans and set off for what would be a 2 hour tour.

At this point I am convinced that there is a Cathedral Basilica in virtually every town in the US.  Once again I saw that there was a Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, but this one we would not be touring as one of the things I had found out was that there was a King Tut exhibit at the Museum of Mobile.  So we went and spent some time looking at it.  It was fun because I had seen all of the artifacts at the Cairo Museum, except King Tut himself who was being prepared for a tour of the US (although, as in this case, I believe it is just a replica.)  The museum had some other historical displays that I found far more interesting.  One covered the history of the slave trade through the Civil Rights era in Mobile and was very well done. Another presented Mardi Gras in Mobile, which is actually were it all began-15 years before New Orleans. There was also a display of quite large doll houses from different periods which were fascinating and took me back to the days when I would play with the one my parents made me.

The most haunting part of the exhibit about the Slave Trade was this model of how the people were virtually stacked in the ships.  I was both repulsed and angered by the idea that anyone could ever have supported this but even more so by the thought that slavery continues and is defended still.

We were hungry after the museum so a quick walk to the Visitor's Center yielded recommendations and directions to Wintzell's Oyster House.  A free trolley came along just as we exited the center and we had a thoroughly enjoyable ride with the driver who did not have her regular car and was cracking jokes the entire way.  This car had every creak, bang and squeak imaginable and we were both laughing by the time she dropped us off.  Our lunch was good and the restaurant was fun but the best part came when a man came in off the street and asked if anyone had lost a red folder with credit cards.  I have an old cll phone holder that holds mine but I "knew" it was in my purse.  I checked anyway and it wasn't.  I said I did and he revealed my little holder with all but our most used cards!  He'd found it further down the sidewalk which means that I must have dropped it as we crossed the street, someone picked it up and then tossed it where he found it.  Whew!  What luck.  (I don't carry it anymore!)

The USS Alabama is on the way out of town

After lunch we walked around the streets for awhile an then got back to the MoHo where the pets were patiently waiting.  Mobile looks like a town that is "coming back" and is a place we hope to revisit.  When we left Mobile we continued into FL and the Panhandle on our way to visit one of my oldest childhood friends and his wife in Gulf Breeze.

Next Stop: Gulf Breeze, FL

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