After a quick stop at Walmart to buy some breakfast we headed back to the point that we had abandoned Route 66 the night before, due to it being dark and us being exhausted after 12 hours of driving and sightseeing. Following the route was much easier and more rewarding in the daylight, we could actually see the views and the sights along the way. Our stop at the Devil’s Elbow overlook was disappointing though, there was  view, but it was almost entirely blocked by trees, poor show. We continued through to Marshfield, going back past the Munger Moss Motel where we had spent the night, our daylight pictures of the sign do not give any idea of how cool it looks lit up at night, which is such a shame. AtMarshfieldwe branched off Route 66 for a detour toMansfield, home of the Laura Ingalls Wilder house and museum, (author of Little House on the Prairie etc.) where she lived for most of her adult life and where she wrote the Little House books, which were autobiographical.

Rocky Ridge Farm - Laura Ingalls Wilder's home

Since Liz hasn’t read the books she elected to sunbathe and blog a bit in the picnic area while I went on the house tour and visited the museum. The tour of the house was great and the guide was very knowledgable. I found it particularly interesting that the house started as one room and was added to room by room as they got together enough money to build the extra rooms on. The guide’s stories added real colour to the tour, especially the one where they built a formal dining room and Laura said, “This is a farmhouse, what do we need a formal dining room for? It should be a music room.”. Another amusing tale was about the chimney and fireplace, she fell in love with some large stone slabs for the mantelpiece and hearth, but after lugging 40 wagon loads of rock for the chimney her husband said no. They argued about it, she begged and he still said no. Then she cried, and it worked, and she is rumoured to have been so surprised that it worked that she felt guilty and vowed never to cry to get her own way ever again. I wanted to buy all the books, since when I read them all I borrowed them from the library, but common sense won over at this point, and I took their mail order brochure, I don’t think carrying lots of books on a roadtrip is the best idea! Returning to Lizzie and the car we got back on the road, heading for our final destination for the day,Carthage. After rejoining Route 66 back inMarshfieldthere was not much of particular note along the route. That is to say, 66 memorabilia and businesses linked to the old road still exist along the route, but we didn’t stop anywhere. We arrived at our home for the night and had a quick dinner and chilled out for a few hours.

66 Drive In

At 7ish we headed out, to the reason that we chose to stay inCarthagefor the night, the 66 Drive-In movie theatre. We arrived as the sun was setting and joined the queue for the box office (which was not yet open). At 7.30pm the box office opened and after paying $7 each (not bad for two films) we drove into the theatre. The parking area was shaped like a fan, with the giant screen at the narrowest part, with a small playground underneath and poles spaced regularly along each row. Choosing a row, we pulled in and stopped the car, only to be approached by a man with a radio (must be important!) and told that we were too far back and needed to position the car between the two posts on either side and tune the radio to 106.5 FM. The reason for this became quickly clear, we could tune the radio and listen to the sound through the car speakers, which was a brilliant idea. Although tempted, we managed to resist popcorn at this stage and began the process of making ourselves comfy for the film, we were pretty early so had plenty of time to do this. As the sun set, it gradually got darker and it was time for the first film, Rango, to begin. The increasingly ominous storm clouds in the distance finally became a fully fledged lightning storm and we could see great bolts of lightning splitting the sky in the distance as we watched the film. It rained for a short while, but not too badly and we were still able to watch the film easily. In the intermission we succumbed to popcorn and were pleasantly surprised to find that it was only $2 for a medium size container. Although tempted to go back for more we managed to resist and settled down to watch the second film, Just Go With It. It was somewhat cringe-worthy but enjoyable none the less. It finished at around midnight and completely exhausted we headed back to the motel and fell into bed. Although the car is not the most comfortable place to watch films for hours on end, I did really enjoy the drive in experience, and for a whole evening of entertainment $10 is not bad at all.

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