Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Alabama; Battleships, Beaches and Forts (part 1)

Location: Hilltop RV Park (el 150 ft); Robertsdale, Alabama

All pictures taken with Nokia Lumia Icon 929 Cell Phone
(click pictures to enlarge)

I was set up in the campground by the early afternoon of last Wednesday with enough time to find a grocery store. I had a hankering (for my Yankee friends, substitute 'craving') for a good steak. I found out long ago that finding a good steakhouse depends on having gone there yourself or based on a recommendation from someone you trust. Since I'm on the road and don't know anyone within 100's of miles, the best steak I can find is one I cook myself. 
Zucchini and mushrooms are
in the skillet with some olive
oil/butter and different kinds
of Mrs. Dash spices. One
steak is marinating in a red
wine vinegrette which was
a first for me. I couldn't tell
the difference between the two.

The grocery store I was lucky enough to find was an old-style Piggly Wiggly in the little town of Loxley, about 5 miles away. I forgot to get any pictures of the outside or in the inside, but based on its appearance, it has to have been there for 50 or more years. It is a "Cost+10%" store which is rare this days. I found a package of two New York Strip steaks for $8.00 and no, they were not on sale. I liked knowing that I was paying a fair "mark-up" on the items I was buying instead of wondering how much profit the store was making. Too many times, in too many stores I get the feeling I'm being taking advantage of, and not in a good way.

Although there have been thunderstorms here the last couple days, I was able to go the the U.S.S. Alabama and its memorial park on Thursday. I may should have waited because the humidity must have been 100% in advance of the storms. After climbing up and down the ships ladders I was sweating like a crooked politician on election day.

I was surprised by the quality of the different memorials in the battleship park. I climbed all over the battleship but it wasn't as exciting as it should have been. Maybe that is because of the time I spent on ship during my time in the Navy. I thought the ships ladders would have been bigger on such a large ship. Some were a little small for a fat overweight husky fella like myself, but I was able to get through OK. 
She was commissioned in 1942.

This is from the stern looking forward. Those
are 3 of the 16 inch guns.

This is from the bridge area looking down
on the bow. Those are 6 more of the 16 inch guns.
This is one of the armor piercing shells for the 16 inch guns.
It weighs about 2,700 pounds and when shot, can travel 21 miles at a speed of about 3X the speed of sound.
I got this picture and the next one from the Internet, thanks to the Navy. Gives new meaning to the term, "guns a blazing", uh?

This picture shows all 9 guns being fired at the same time. This was not normally done, because the air turbulence created by adjacent shells would affect the accuracy of the firing. Notice the side-ways wake of the ships bow. Sir Issac Newton would have been proud in that the picture proves his 3rd law of motion in that "for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction".

The memorial park surrounding the battleship was very nice. It was a little hard to follow since there wasn't a smooth flow from one memorial to the next. 
This plaque is to all the submarines and their crews that that never came home and are "still on patrol".

World War Two memorial

War memorial with the battleship in the background

The memorial on the right is for fall of the twin towers during the 9/11 attack.

The Alabama version of the Vietnam Wall with the names of the Alabama people lost during the war. I was honored to be able to see The Wall in Washington D.C. and it is a humbling experience.

I have seen a lot of war memorials all over this country, but this a first for me. It is for the War Dogs and their handlers who were lost during action. Excellent !!

Nice bench to end the tour. From the view on the bench you can see the War Dogs, The Wall, Air Superiority, and the big Battleship. 
It was a good day even with the high humidity. I didn't go onboard the submarine that was on display because I have done so before.

I think I'll head to the beaches today to see how they look after the storms that have been passing through. There should be a couple forts too.

Ya'll take care of each other. I'll Cya down the road.


  1. I toured the USS Alabama in about 1982 with my brother, niece and my 2 boys. My memory of the trip is packing a 2 year old all over the ship. He was afraid of any open grates so someone was usually carrying him. Something I found strange at the time was the number of Japanese tourists that were touring the ship. I couldn't tour the submarine because of a touch of claustrophobia. I don't know how anyone could work in something that small knowing they were under water. The humidity might have been 100% but at least you didn't go in July.

    There is an interesting air craft museum I think in Pensacola.

    1. Hello Martha. I can see where it would be very difficult touring the ship with small children. I didn't tour the submarine either. I have been on WW2 subs before and one one modern day one. Big difference between the two. Take care.

  2. I have toured all there, Thank GOD for our men and women, and our precious 4 leggers who only live to serve us..... who served us beyond measure! And did you happen to eat at the Original Oyster Shack on the Bay there? If not, a must stop and eat next time. Was on contract at hospital in Mobile during Katrina, no problem for me to happily give up my hotel for those who know how to handle disaster. Thinking of career change reading you over the last year. Enjoy your blog Darrell. Funny, have a cousin who was married to a La. Goza at one time. Small world. Looking to RV on my own soon as well. Appreciate your posts about family trials and tribulations. Let's all start looking for better pass a good time, no?

    1. Hello 2Spoos, I'm glad you like the blog. Mostly it is just typing what I'm thinking at the time. Good luck on your career change. That is one of those big life decisions. Be safe, have fun. Cya