Less-traveled roads offer best journeys Charles Kuralt once wrote: "Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel across the country from coast to coast without seeing anything."
Phyllis and I are inclined to agree with him.
When we travel by auto, we go mostly on the gray, black and sometimes red lines on the map. Oh, it takes a little longer, but we get to places which today's hurried motorists miss in their haste.
For instance, there was the time we were meandering through West Virginia when Phyllis spotted the General Lewis Country Inn and Restaurant on her always-handy Triple A travel book. Luckily, we got a room in Lewisburg's historic lodging house which dates back to 1834. It was a nice evening so we looked for something to do before it was time to go to bed.
That's when we spotted the poster which said that the Tommy Dorsey orchestra, under leader Buddy Morrow, was playing an outdoor concert in town that night. The event was a benefit for Greenbriar Community College next to Carnegie Hall, which was a gift to Lewisburg from Andrew Carnegie, the Pennsylvania steel tycoon.
We hurried over to the campus, only to discover that it was a dress-up affair for supporters of the school, and we had neither tickets nor proper attire. Right next door, though, was an old cemetery, so we sat on crumbling tombstones to hear the band and Sinatra-type vocalist Walt Andrus. The price was right, and we had better seats than some of the college donors.
[Editor's note: Buddy Morrow and his musicians were in Yankton just this week.]
The next day we drove up Highway 219 to Pearl Buck's birthplace at Hillsboro and then crossed over into Virginia on Highway 33 through the Appalachian Mountains. We were on even smaller roads when we visited the birthplace of George Washington and Robert E. Lee along the Potomac River. We wouldn't have seen either of them if we'd have stayed on the Interstate!
I can't remember what small road we were on in Ohio when, on a whim, we drove into a farm where a sign said they were having a yard sale. The local folks gawked at our South Dakota license plates and then laughed when we told them we had driven all the way just to see what they were selling. Again we were a long way from the nearest Interstate, just as we were when we motored along the ridge roads in the tobacco country of Kentucky.
On the other end of the country we have traveled down scenic oceanside Highway 1 to Fort Bragg, California, where we rode the picturesque Skunk Railroad to Willits and back. In Oregon we have seen scores of Stellar sea lions in their natural caves north of Florence on U.S. 101, and we have wandered over to Crater Lake where, almost eight centuries ago, Mount Mazama blew its volcanic top and created the unusual body of water more than 1,900 feet deep.
We've toured the apple country of Washington on secondary roads, gone to the foot of Mounts Baker and Rainier, saw the Steptoe Battlefield site in the Palouse Country, and more than once stopped at the Grand Coulee Dam on the Columbia River, one of the world's most massive concrete structures. None of them were on the whizz-through thoroughfares which Kuralt disdained.
Maybe it's been our way of trying to slow down the pace of this mad world of ours. Sure it's nice to hop on a plane or roar down a truck-filled four-laner to get to a specific destination in a hurry. But it's nicer still to take your time on the less-traveled byways, even though they don't have rest stops every 40 or 50 miles.
While Phyllis and I don't necessarily want to go back to covered wagons and stagecoaches, we enjoy traveling on roads which Charles Kuralt would have liked.
Who knows? We might just find another strategically located tombstone on which to listen to Larry O'Brien's Glenn Miller band play an outdoor concert at some unlikely place not on an Interstate.
© 1999 Robert F. Karolevitz
Between the Lines
By David Lias
So, you think nothing interesting ever happens in South Dakota. Read on:
* The recipe for St. Onge steak tips, a delicacy originally served at the now-closed Rancher Bar in St. Onge, is the object of a lawsuit.
John Heck, of Spearfish, and his Prime Time Sports Grill Inc. have sued employees Todd and Peggy Fierro over the recipe. Heck claims Todd Fierro, an employee, stole the secret recipe that Heck had acquired from Marcille Butts.
The lawsuit said the recipe also is known as Rancher steak tips and marinated steak tips.
Among other remedies, the suit asks a judge to stop the Fierros from disclosing the recipe. Heck also asked for unspecified damages.
Todd Fierro was hired as manager at the Prime Time Sports Grill in Belle Fourche. During its first year of operation, according to the lawsuit, Heck personally prepared the recipe for the steak tips, "which Todd Fierro and other employees of Prime Time Sports Grill Inc. then used in the preparation and service of steak tips."
Heck said he then decided to tell the secret recipe to Fierro, who had 25 percent interest in the company.
Then, the lawsuit states, Peggy Fierro began operating a cafe at the St. Onge Livestock Co. sales barn. In August, the St. Onge Livestock Cafe added a menu item called Rancher steak tips, "which steak tips are made the same as or significantly similar to that of plaintiff's, utilizing the recipe of plaintiff," according to the lawsuit.
The suit calls the recipe a trade secret that "is not generally known to the general public and is not readily ascertainable by proper means."
* A Pierre man accused of riding his horse while he was intoxicated must stand trial on a charge of drunken driving, Magistrate Scott Myren ruled recently after a hearing.
Paul "Flip" Wilson, was arrested July 31 while riding his horse in a ditch along a highway that leads out of Pierre.
It was the second time he had been arrested this summer on suspicion of riding a horse while intoxicated. He is scheduled to go to trial Sept. 24 on the first charge of driving under the influence of alcohol.
Rayne Adamson, a Pierre police officer, testified Tuesday that he stopped Wilson July 31 to warn him to be more careful while riding at night.
The officer said Adamson's eyes appeared to be red and he smelled of alcohol. He said he arrested Wilson after the man failed sobriety tests.
Wilson's attorney, Lelia Hood, has said a law defining a horse as a vehicle is vague and might be thrown out if tested in an appeal to the Supreme Court.
At Tuesday's hearing, Hood asked Adamson: "You're aware a horse has its own brain inside its body and moves around on its own, right?"
Adamson also acknowledged that a person does not need a driver's license to ride a horse. He said Wilson had a horse-racing identification card when he was arrested.
The officer said Wilson was in control of a horse while the rider was intoxicated. He said Wilson could stop the horse, slow it down or speed it up.
Prosecutors have said a horse is a vehicle and it is illegal under state law to ride a horse while intoxicated.
* More than six years after a young Lake Andes couple reportedly walked away from a car accident and their bodies reappeared three months later, the bizarre case has officially been closed.
Arnold Archambeau, 20, and Ruby Ann Bruguier, 19, disappeared Dec. 12, 1992, after Archambeau's car swerved and overturned into a ditch just east of Lake Andes.
Another passenger in the car, Tracy Dion, said the last time she saw Archambeau and Bruguier, they were walking away from the scene with no visible signs of major injury.
Searches turned up nothing. Then on March 10, 1993 � three months later � Bruguier's body turned up about 75 feet from where the car rolled. It was floating in about four feet of water.
Still, no Archambeau.
The next day, officials found Bruguier's body 15 to 20 feet from where they found Bruguier the day before.
Autopsy results indicated Archambeau and Bruguier died of exposure, and most likely did not die where their bodies were found, but were moved there.