Twine calls travelers south to ice, snow storm

If I had a bucket list, seeing Chillicothe, Mo., would be on it.
It’s a great name, so I wanted to see the town.
Last weekend my friend Dawn needed to escape, so we headed south. South in winter sounds like a good idea, and going on the road with Dawn an even better idea. We travel well together, since neither of us cares where we go or what we do.
This time we headed to Branson, Mo., to see the world’s largest ball of twine. We’ve already seen the world’s largest popcorn ball in Sac City and the world’s largest Cheeto in Algona, so we were going for the whole ball of twine this time.
And I didn’t have to drive. We took her car, a stick shift, and she’s protective, even though I told her I know how to drive a stick. Then I’d make some comment like driving it off the road or back into its tree, so she never let me get behind the wheel.
That’s called putting method behind your madness. Or in front of it. I don’t know which side it fell on, but I do know I didn’t have to drive.
We left mid-afternoon Thursday, which should have given us plenty of time to make Branson without going too late into the night, but, as always happens, we poked around and looked around and didn’t hit Chillicothe until 7 p.m., when it seemed a good idea to put down temporary roots.
If we hadn’t, we wouldn’t have looked around town before leaving the next day and we wouldn’t have discovered that Chillicothe is the home of sliced bread. Think of it. We sat close to the place where the first baker pushed a loaf of bread through a contraption that would cut pieces all at once. That’s worth the trip south.
Which made it easier to be OK with not seeing the world’s largest ball of twine.
Now, Branson is way south of here, certainly south enough for shirtsleeve weather in early March, but the weather gods had different ideas and sent Winter Storm Titan blowing through, dragging with it ice and sleet and snow.
Before the bad weather, we saw the Dixie Stampede, where we spent enough time looking at the horses afterward and talking to riders that the parking lot was empty, or nearly so, which meant Dawn didn’t have to fight a crowd when driving back to the motel. She doesn’t like crowds, on foot or in cars.
On Saturday we kept going until late afternoon when we sat in the parking lot outside the home of the twine ball. Neither had the energy to get out and go one more place, so we put it off. Unfortunately, the ice, snow and sleet blew in and kept us holed up in the hotel room all day Sunday. A person can read, watch TV and sleep only so much without going nuts.
On the up side, we now have a reason to go back to Branson. We still haven’t seen the world’s largest ball of twine.
So long friends, until the next time when we’re together.
Sandy Mickelson, retired lifestyle editor of The Messenger, may be reached at