Today was going to be long, hot and probably very boring!
As we’d bought tickets for the Chelsea game after working out our route, we had to drive the equivalent of two days in one.
Instead of staying overnight in Portsmouth, Ohio, we were now aiming to be there at lunchtime.
It also meant we would have to miss out some sightseeing and some other places would be closed by the time we arrived.
Chelsea were worth it though.
We drove to Cincinatti, Ohio, leaving Indiana behind.
The cornfields continued as did the fields of soya beans (not mint after all).
The Ohio river runs along the border between Ohio and Kentucky, and we were going to be following the river for a while.
Cincinatti has four road bridges, the first one being a mini replica of Brooklyn bridge in New York. It was the most interesting as the others were big steel structures although, one was a fetching shade of pale yellow. We meandered our way over three of them, not because we wanted to go over as many as possible, but because that was the way our route to the Ohio Scenic Byway took us.
The scenic byway really isn’t scenic unless you like trees with an occasional glimpse of river, and if you are lucky, a river boat like an old-fashioned steamboat.
Once again it seems that Americans don’t get the opportunity to pull over and take in the view.
We managed to find a small view by the edge of a town, but they make it very difficult.
The road was quiet, bordering on empty and, with no real view to entertain us, it quickly became tedious. We stopped at a diner, at Fort Shawnee, for lunch and coffee more to keep us awake than any hunger. Villages or towns along the road were few and far between, having no centre with occasional houses strung along the way.
We arrived in Portsmouth, famous for the murals on the floodwall. Fantastic artwork depicting the history of the area and honouring prominent local people. They took 20 years to complete and were done by one artist. We popped into the visitor centre there where the lady was delighted we were English as it is a place she has always wanted to visit but never done so.
We crossed the river a few more times passing a few corn and soya bean fields and lots of trees before crossing into West Virginia.
More trees and the Blenko Glass Company.
We were too late for the glass blowing demos, unfortunately, but we had a look in the shop at the wonderful vases and glasses in a whole rainbow of colour.
Our next port of call was Charlston, capital of West Virginia. The golden dome, on the state capital building, was spectacular to look at in the sunshine. We had intended to stop but, due to lots of one way roads and no parking places, we couldn’t get close. There was also a multicultural festival going on somewhere but it either wasn’t on or had finished as we saw no sign of it.
Deciding we’d had enough of Charlston we headed for the hotel.
Looking for coffee we turned off the interstate only to find the advertised food and fuel was 10 miles further in the wrong direction.
The hotel was in Buckhannon, a sleepy little town. There was a party going on in the park so we strolled down to have a look; a live band and stalls selling food and craft items.
We had dinner in the hotel, yummy potato soup, fritatta and meatloaf with buttermilk pie for dessert.