October 14, 2007

Jay to Munson, 18 Miles

After each day's walk, 10 miles on average, one of Lawton's aides would get a piece of red tape and mark a tree next to the RV where he slept, so he knew exactly where he left off. Anything short of that would be cheating, even five feet. Luckily, it's pretty country around Munson.

Lots and lots of goldenrod.
From the Walkin' Notes:

We left this morning from Jay about 8 o'clock. I knew we had a long day today to try to go to Munson.

The first people that I saw on the road — a car stopped and out jumped J. Kirby Smith from Bagdad. I had met him at the Milton Kiwanis Club earlier and had also seen him at Milton at a dinner Dick Stone had. He heard at the Gopher Club at Pensacola this morning that I was out on the road so he came out to see me and brought the Chairman of County Commission of Santa Rosa, W. O. Kelly, with him and Clifford Wilson, also one of the commissioners from Santa Rosa County. So we had a nice visit out on the road. Then they took leave and I started on down the road.

The first place that we came to on the road this morning was a place called Crossroads. That's the local name for it. I think it's where the road goes south to Milton and north goes up to Alabama. I met a couple of mechanics there. Had an interesting visit with them. One of them told me — a hard-working young man — that this year he was paying $3,OOO in income taxes, Daniel Sims was his name, and he had the feeling that the money he was paying, that much of it was being used to give people. He didn't mind helping anybody who couldn't help themselves, but he thought a lot of people were getting his money that weren't working and didn't want to work. He felt there were people that had made more money than he that wouldn't be paying as much taxes on a pro rata share of taxes as he was paying, that there were too many people that just didn't want to work today. He was also real concerned about the general permissiveness of our society. He said he was concerned about a bus driver who had almost lost his job because he had tried to stop the kids from throwing screws with a sling-shot. This general permissiveness of our society certainly concerned him. Both of these fellows felt that they had never gotten a chance to see anybody that went to Washington before and they both said they were going to help me and they wanted me to remember them when I got up there.

Then I went on down the road and came to Jay prison. This is actually one of the Dept. of Transportation road camps. This is where 30-something prisoners lost their lives when the fire swept through that building in about a minute. In the Senate we tried to outlaw the use of temporary barracks and also dealt with claim bills in connection with this fire. It was very real, seeing what had happened there as a result of the fire in Jay prison. I had a chance to talk with some people there today — a couple of them were there when the fire occurred.

Again today 3 or 4 people stopped and offered to give me a ride. I had one fellow — Dewell Adams was his name and he heard that I was out on the road — he went to a store and bought a coke and brought it out to me. He stopped and said he knew I wouldn't take a ride but he wanted me to have a coke.

Then I had one of the fellows stop from Independent Life Insurance. He told me that he had seen Rosemary Emmett, who said in Century she was going to sell me a walking policy. So I'm still looking for Rosemary; she's supposed to be getting me an application form. She's got a policy that's going to cost me 50 cents a week, but it's going to insure me as I walk so I think she'll be bringing an application out as I walk here.

Then as I walked up towards Pittman's Grocery which is getting close to the tail-end of my walk for today, two young ladies, Brenda Ellis and Alicia Simmons — these young ladies were 14 years old — had seen on television last night that I was walking and they told one of the daddies, Mr. Simmons, that they'd like to come out and walk with me a while. So he brought them out to the road and they walked down the road with me a while. Mr. Simmons was in the car along with their sister who was sick and we had a nice visit.

I walked into the Pittman's Grocery store and I got to meet Hank Locklin's mother. Hank Locklin is a country music star and has a home in Milton. His mother lives with him at the home. We had a visit about Hank, who is now in Scotland. His mother is keeping his home while he's gone. Then I visited in Pittman's store and talked with people there. Munson is a couple more miles down the road.

I'm going to make Munson before the end of the evening. I'm a good bit sore today. When I stopped for lunch or a little break, I notice that my legs get kinda stove up like the old race horse and it takes a while before I get loosened up again. At one stretch yesterday I timed myself; and I was walking as much as 4 miles an hour. Today I was timing it and this morning I think I was making 3 miles an hour. I stopped for lunch and doctored by feet since I have two blisters on both feet, and after lunch I was walking at a rate down to 2 miles an hour. It's going to take more hours right now until I get into a little better shape in the legs and get these blisters taken care of.

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