On Monday, April 4, we left the welcoming town of Muskogee, Oklahoma to head for Austin, Texas, with a short stop in Lawton, Oklahoma and a short stop in Sherman, Texas first. It’s always interesting to read the names of places we pass. My favorite was Lotawtah Rd., which, not surprisingly, was right by a large lake. Erica and I laughed about that one for quite a while!
As we got close to our destination, we thought it would be a good idea to follow the signs to the campground. We were wrong. The park we were staying at was on a military base. The signs led us to a gate that is only open on weekends during prime camping season. It is not a pleasant feeling to arrive where you think you need to be to find it locked up tight. We eventually did figure out how to get to the gate we needed to enter through, then drove through to the far reaches of the base where the RV park is. I don’t recall Army bases being so open to civilians.
Driving to the more desolate parts of the base, I saw a sign that said “Think Safety.” I jokingly said, “Yes, think safety, because you are at the far end of the firing range.” I made a few more jokes about it until we saw a sign on our left saying, “Danger – Do not enter. Impact area. Lasers may be in use.” The children in the van with me realized then that, although I was laughing, I was not kidding! The boys especially got a thrill out of hearing the explosions from the artillery training the next day.
Tuesday, on our way into Lawton to check out the house we lived in when dad was stationed at Ft. Sill and the church where I was saved, we stopped at the US Army Artillery Museum. This was a neat place that chronicled the history of artillery from the earliest Trebuchet to weapons used today. There was lots of big artillery, both in and out of the building. While some of the innovations were astounding, and I enjoyed seeing the old “portable” computer, the most amusing display was the mule on which they tried to strap a small cannon. They failed to take into account the mule’s reaction to having something shot off its back. This did not become a well used resource!