Updated: Jul 22, 2018
Observations Specific to Alabama:
1. In order to enter the Alabama mainland, the route required that I board a ferry. While I waited 90 minutes for the ferry to arrive, I was afforded the opportunity to converse with a local motorcyclist lady. She began the conversation by telling me that she had just left the bar where she had been ripping shots of liquor for the past few hours. She also noted that the glaring Sun didn’t help her headache. Hoping to find relief, she lied down on the park bench only to quickly conclude that napping was impossible. As a result, she whipped out a 12 ounce Miller High Life can, which lasted no longer than 3 minutes. An hour later, the ferry arrived, transported us to our destination, and she drove away. I didn’t know pre-gaming ferries was a thing in Alabama. Welcome to ‘Bama!
2. When I first entered Alabama, I was surprised at all the ostensible litter lining the Alabama roadways. It looked like someone had gutted a stuffed teddy bear and scattered its contents for miles and miles. Eventually, I wised up. Someone didn’t throw litter out the window—what I saw was cotton that either (a) blew off of Alabama’s thousands of acres of cotton fields or (b) blew off of the hundreds of cotton trucks zooming along the back roads. One of the many reasons how I’ve come to realize that I’m a Yankee.
3. The first day in Alabama someone told me, “Be careful here, man. Everyone here carries a gun.” It’s safe to say that none of my experiences in Alabama have dissuaded me from accepting this as cold-hard fact.
4. Alabama roads are constructed with coarse aggregate and designed with no shoulder. In other words, Alabama is not built for cyclists.
5. “Beware of dog,” “No trespassing,” and “Smile! You’re on video” signs are pervasive. Given the prevalence of firearms, I wouldn’t recommend selling Girl Scout cookies door-to-door.
6. Conecuh sausage is excellent. It tastes similar to kielbasa.
7. Logging trucks dominate the roadways.
8. Churches dominate the landscape: old churches, new churches, abandoned churches, dilapidated churches, small churches. Most churches in Alabama are relatively quaint. Grassy parking lots are not uncommon.