Hotel update: While I still haven't heard from the General Manager of the Carbondale, Illinois, Hampton Inn, I did hear from the Hampton in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Several folks had commented to him, thinking they were the location that cancelled our rooms.
It wasn't. We stayed in a different hotel in Bowling Green. It was the Hampton Inn in Carbondale, Illinois, near Du Quoin that caused our problem and seemed uninterested in correcting it or helping to find us rooms. They're also the location with the General Manager who has yet to call me and explain why it happened.
And now, back to our Power Tour coverage.
Leaving Chattanooga was tough this morning. The city was great, the folks were super and the hotel was really nice. Ken stuck around for a flight back to California, while Shane and I walked out to find
one of the Hot Rod photographers pan-handling outside the hotel. We threw a few dollars his way and headed for the Callaway.
Our departure point was Coker Tire's place a few blocks away. It was pretty easy to find — all we had to do was look for lots of cars and Honest Charley.
The cars were easy to spot. After almost a week, you begin to recognize cars and people.
Shane cleaned the Callaway once again (I'm really good at leaving to shoot pix on a moment's notice),
while I researched the similarity between a tire and a donut.
Both round, both have a hole in the middle, and both are available at Coker Tire. I even discovered that Hot Rod photographers consume them.
Jerry Magnuson had his car ready to go, so David Frieburger was ready to start our next-to-last driver's meeting.
Due to a tiny snafu, all the cars were lined up facing the wrong direction. Michelle and some of the Coker folks updated the directions, after deciding the best way to go. "Go down here and turn right."
"No, on second thought you really need to go that way."
After much gesticulating, they decided and Frieburger started; the crowd paying rapt attention.
Had there been a seat, Shane would have been sitting on the edge of it. With much anticipation, the crowd awaited their updated directions. Joe arrived too late to finish cleaning the car, but offered to help once we arrived in Birmingham.
Jim decided to make a run to see Johnson's Hot Rod Shop with some of the Magnaflow guys since it was (kinda) on the way. Mark tagged along because, well, he wanted to. Mark found he and Bob had a little in common.
Spread around the shop was Bob's next project,
some completed cars,
and some really tired Tour dudes.
Bob seems to like old stuff, cars, trucks and automotive signage.
Meanwhile, back on the real Tour we flashed through parts of Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama. It's a rare day you can see giant fish
and an outhouse all in the span of 30 minutes.
We even managed to find some Alabama corn which, while was noticeably taller than any other corn we'd seen to date.
After a surprise lunch (it was a surprise to walk into a restaurant where the menu was Mexican but the name was not) that Joe bought, to seal his deal, we headed to the venue.
When the rig was in sight,
Joe offered to fill his end of the bargin by helping to clean the Callaway. His apprehension of riding back seat was only mollified by kissing the ground we drove on, in thanks for a safe delivery.
Notice how he was smart enough to wait until after the car was washed, the water cooling the asphalt to a point just below melting.
With car cleaning once again under way,
I decided to go look for more photo opportunities. I trusted Joe and Shane, knowing the deionized water we carried would prevent spotting even in the brutal sun.
It turns out my photo opportunities involved me standing in the shade, taking pix of Joe and Shane. With my car clean, they turned their attention to the El Camino.
I turned my attention to more shade and a young man playing video games instead of watching cars.
I felt really bad for Shane and Joe, them sweating so much. So, I walked down to the autocross, which was sponsored by Air Ride Technology. It really was neat, watching drivers negotiate some tightly placed cones against the clock. It's kinda like Wednesday night at our local drag strip back home run whatcha brung.
Whether a Camaro,
or a Hoover City police Tahoe,
a good time was had by all until... a Ford GT thundered away. It was the loudest car I have ever heard.
After his screaming banzai run, later runs of more pedestrian vehicles like Ford Lightnings seemed calm.
Fearful of sunburn, and lacking any sunscreen, I decided to head back towards the rig. Along the way I found a nice '93 Fox-bodied SVT Cobra in teal,
and a '70 Chevelle with a supercharged 7.4 liter motor.
To quote Shane upon his arrival; "Nice."
He and I found a rolling tribute to The Intimidator
near what is the wildest police car I've ever seen.
Yep, the Hoover PD has a Porsche — seized in a drug forfeiture.
Mayor Tony Petelos explained how they came into possession of said Porsche, beaming with pride over the job their department has done in interdicting the flow of drugs on highways that run through Hoover.
David Lindon, Hoover's Fleet Management Director, bragged about their biodiesel program and its ninety cent per gallon cost. They run the biodiesel in all the city vehicles, saving not only $2 per gallon over diesel, but oil and grease from being sent down the drain or into a landfill.
From left to right, here's Fleet Management Director David Lindon, His Honor, Mayor Tony Petelos, yours truly, and Shane.
We're in front of that seized Porsche.
Tomorrow will be an interesting day. I'm planning on riding with Mark in his 1968 Olds 442, which was built by Jerry Csontos and his sidekicks at the Knucklehead Garage in Pennsylvania. Its almost 500 cubic-inch stroker motor is low-compression, yet makes enough torque to pull a house off its foundation.
It's also going to be hot, so plenty of water is the rule of the day. Tomorrow will also be the last day of Power Tour 2010, but don't shed a tear for any of us.
We've had the time of our lives.
Your humble and obedient servant,