On Sunday we left Memphis and started heading west. We stayed off I-40 because I dislike interstates in general and if an alternate route presents itself, I will take it. I hate I-40 in particular because it replaced old Route 66 and in my opinion that was a crime! In this case we found highway 64 paralleled I-40 all the way into Oklahoma. It was a nice change and took us through some very scenic country. If anyone asks if I have been to the Ozarks, I can say “yes” and I have the proof!
We planned to make it to Oklahoma City in one day but fate prevailed. We reached a point where it looked like we should get back onto I-40. We should have stuck with 64! Not long after changing highways we came to some construction. The westbound side of I-40 was forced to merge into one side of the eastbound side of the highway. We were going along slowly but steady until we came to a dead stop. The lineup extended as far ahead as we could see but we could not see the problem. After an hour or so the woman in a car behind us decided to take the opportunity to jog ahead to see what she could find out. She was back in about an hour and reported she had been stopped by the police and told to go back. They told her a piece of a bridge had collapsed and several cars had their tires blown out. No one was hurt but they had to call some equipment operators to put in a temporary road across the median to allow use of the new bridge in the westbound lane. After another couple of hours we started moving. The old eastbound bridge had several cars and trucks parked on it and up ahead were about ten vehicles with at least two blown tires each. Any cars with magnesium wheels had their wheels broken into bits. A hole about eight feet wide and a couple of feet long had opened up in the concrete bridge and all that separated the speeding cars from the river below was a web of re-bar!
This incident put us way behind schedule and we found a Wal-Mart nearby to spend the night. I am glad I did not hit that hole! Those people had a long wait for new tires and wheels or a flatbed tow truck!