Sherm, Coyote and I decided to ride down to the other local Best Western Inn (there are two of them in a space of about a half mile) to have breakfast at The Gazebo. The young fellow at Ozark Fried Chicken and Fish told us they had the best breakfast buffet in town. As was usual, when we headed out a group of people followed us.
There were a few tables open in the dining room. I told the server we were the first four but there were more coming. We didn't need to sit together and would take tables as they opened up because we hate disrupting a restaurant without advance notice. Instead, she took us to a large private room and kept escorting new arrivals back to join us. Eventually, we took up three large tables.
The buffet was everything it was cracked up to be. I had scrambled eggs that were light and fluffy, bacon that was crisp without a hint of grease, sausage likewise without grease and just a little crisp on the edges and a thick sausage gravy that I spread over everything. Others told me the biscuits and pancakes were similarly excellent. The staff was friendly and funny. Add it all up and we now had a new favourite breakfast place.
After breakfast, we prepared for the 10:30 departure of the ride to Cliff House for lunch. Sherm said Debbie hadn't been riding since her wreck and asked if we could set an easy pace. Easy pace is my specialty so I was nominated to lead.
The group consisted of Sandy & I, Coyote, Rainman, Vickie & Kay, Sherm, Butch & Teresa, Cheap B and Lanny. The last two exhibited great patience with my less than brisk pace. After stopping at Murphy's in Berryville for fuel, I miscued going through town and led the whole crew around one block before getting back on track. I was afraid my reputation for handling the GPS efficiently might be in danger, and I might get lumped in with Lucky Al and others who have gotten groups lost while following Mr. Garmin..
Back on track, we went south on Missouri 21 and then followed Missouri 43 and 74 to Jasper. Sandy and I got a kick out of this because that is our grandson's name. The roads had a lot of twists and turns, making for an enjoyable ride.
We eventually arrived in Jasper where I stopped so the Burgman's could fuel up. They get great mileage but just have small gas tanks. It seemed there was some kind of Burgman gathering happening in town. Ee continued six miles south on Highway 7 to the Cliff House Restaurant.
Inside the restaurant, the large table was free and they seated us right away. Our server was Sarah, but she pronounced it SAY-rah. I had the usual mushroom/Swiss burger, although the mushrooms were deep fried rather than sauteed. Different. This was complemented by a passable coleslaw.
After lunch, Lanny and Cheap B opted to go and ride some winding roads at a more spirited pace. Rainman opted to go with the. I led the rest of us north on Highway 7, down the mountain and through Jasper. We continued on 7 all the way to Missouri 206, which we followed to bypass Harrison traffic on our way to US 62 west.
On highway 62, we stopped in Alpena so Deb and Vickie could top off their tanks. Then we road on to Eureka Springs, passing two construction zones where they appear to be four-laning the road. The temperature was warm and the skies were clear but the wind was picking up as we got back to Stonegate about 3:15.
Hang told us this morning that Zeke wasn't feeling well. She wondered if it was food poisoning because he appeared to be exhibiting symptoms of salmonella. Shortly after we got back, Laura's Bill loaded both of them into his truck and delivered them to the local hospital. Later, Bill returned with Hang and said they would be admitting Zeke overnight for observation.
We spent the rest of the afternoon visiting and blogging but mostly visiting. Chuck and Julie, the owners and Mike, their manager, said they liked us so much that they wanted to put on a fish fry for us tonight. Appetizers, venison, hush puppies and fish. It was an awesome spread. The folks here have been great hosts and we have reserved our same room again for next year.
I wasn't able to eat too much between the hot sauce, the jalapenos and the carbs but what I did taste was good. Thanks again to Chuck, Julie and Mike for this thoughtful gesture.
The evening was just perfect, not to warm and not too cool. We spent it visiting and I had my nightly drink of bourbon and branch. Then Gambler and I discovered the tequila and margarita mix that Cheap B had brought and put on the communal table, so I mixed one of those as well. It was just enough to give me a warm glow as I headed for bed about 11:00 PM.
Today's Route (136 motorcycle miles):