Sunday, November 21, 2010


Best Friend (BF) and I have made many trips in the earlier years of our near 30-year friendship. A number were associated with our Odyssey of the Mind coaching experiences, and others were shopping trips outside our immediate area.

For some reason our husbands did not enjoy these trips, although my husband (H) did enjoy taking us Christmas shopping in Springfield MO. Something funny seemed to always happen, especially when we met friends at Golden Corral one year. We were wearing reindeer antlers with twinkling lights.

(H) was behind us in line when an amused customer asked him if he was with these "dears." He said, "Nope, never saw them before." We replied, he could pay for his own dinner, which he did and ours. We always enticed him to drive with a promise to pay for his dinner at his choice of restaurant. Being cavalier, he always paid, anyway.

Our friends remarked we were very easy to spot.

Our husbands repeatedly admonished us when we left together on some of our agendas, to not call them if we landed in jail.

But this post is about another Odyssey of the Mind trip. As I remember we had traveled east to Springdale or Bentonville area for training as OM judges. This area of Arkansas is home of WalMart and also Tyson Foods, Inc., two giants in the corporate world. Tyson was known at that time primarily for chicken and turkey products. 

Tyson as a part of its business, partners with farmers to raise its products, which at this time were largely chickens and turkeys. Large barns for breeding and growing chicken and turkey "crops" for Tyson dot the countryside, particularly in northern Arkansas, where other agricultural endeavors are less successful.

We spent the night before the training session,  dutifully attended the session, then ate at Red Lobster, taking our leftovers home in the proverbial Styrofoam containers, which always included one or more of their luscious garlic butter flavored biscuits. Our husbands or pets usually consumed the leftovers.

The trip there in the late 80s, early 90s was another winding narrow road out of Harrison with virtually no passing lanes and very few towns or hamlets. I remember one town [Berryville, I believe] where we were routed around its courthouse square on scenic tour.

 It was also getting dark. Somewhere along this dark two lane -no passing highway, the vehicle began to emanate a gaseous odor, not gasoline or exhaust fumes. It was somewhat as if one or both of us had developed intestinal gas from our scrumptious Red Lobster meal, which was escaping our bodies. Having some decorum, we neither one said anything. There were no thunderous farts, etc.

Finally, it was so bad I finally said, " what is that awful odor?

Broderbund ClickArt
Turkey Manure
 BF said, "I don't know but I think it is coming from the truck ahead," which we had been following almost from the start of our journey home.

Being the driver, she pulled up close to the truck as was safe. YUCKO! we were following a truck with an open truck-bed of turkey manure. Since there was nowhere to pass, we continued to be gassed by the foul odor, almost to the point of nausea.

We began to search for relief. Opening the window certainly was not an option. Suddenly, one or both of us had one of those spontaneous creative Odyssey of the Mind moments!

Broderbund ClickArt

Before this truck appeared in our path, we had complained the Red Lobster biscuits were stinking up the car. All of a sudden they became the sweetest air freshener in all the world!

We took one or two  biscuits out of our containers and held them under our noses most of the way into Harrison, which was no short distance.

There was a passing lane outside Harrison where we finally passed the odorous truck.
 Ah! We put away the biscuits and enjoy nearly pure oxygen air the rest of the way home. I have loved the smell of garlic since this experience.

Footnote: Tyson entered the greening of America by creating a division of its company for recycling manure, chicken fat and other byproducts of its industry.


Onedia said...

Carol, you really took to blogging. You are my most successful "student" ..... Great blog.

faye said...

Great , great post. You get the
blue ribbon for best use of a
leftover biscuit.

And it is really nice to know that
friendships can last and last.

Sweet Virginia Breeze said...

I'm very familiar with the smell of Tyson manure. Your post reminded me that I intended on posting about my experience. Maybe I should have gotten some garlic biscuits.

Lorna said...

Creative solution. I would have pulled over, I think, and had a nap....

lakeviewer said...

This is precious fodder!

Arkansas Patti said...

That is so funny, and you are right, passing a vehicle on rural roads in Arkansas just doesn't happen.
You two were perfect choices for the Odyssey of the Mind group. Very clever thinking. Think I would have nibbled on my "freshener", destroying it.

Dimple said...

I have really enjoyed your OM stories! I can identify with driving behind this truck, because we often share the highway (also two lane, and usually too busy for safe passing) with trucks hauling cattle or hogs from Canada to parts south...I don't know the usual destination. Anyway, it's not the same smell as turkey dung, but it is an unpleasant smell, and there is no alternative for some miles if you end up behind one! Too bad I don't normally have garlic biscuits with me!

Small City Scenes said...

Necessity is the Mother of Invention---for sure.
Another use for garlic buscuit. LOL
You two always have great and not so great adventures. Good for you. MB(

Jewels said...

I enjoyed your post – too familiar with getting stuck behind a manure truck. Hope you are feeling much better too. Happy Thanksgiving!

CHERI said...

What a hilarious story!!! That stuff does smell awful...we have chicken houses in the area and traveling by them is often an experience! I've never heard of Ody. of the Mind...what's that?