13/03/18 – 15/03/18
We stepped out of the greyhound bus station, eyes wide and mouths hanging open like fish. There was nothing here apart from a huge selection of fast-food chains on the other side of the road. A tumbleweed may as well have rolled past us.
It was a two hour walk from the bus station to our hotel, which we were not prepared to do. I wanted to curl up into a ball and lay on the ground, but I also didn’t want to stay any longer at the Greyhound station. Thankully Uber saved us.
Like Nashville, we only had one full day to explore, and the walk to downtown Montgomery was about an hour. We decided to be boring and have a lazy evening in the hotel but first headed to Walmart to grab some supplies, scoring a massive pizza for only $5. While we were in Walmart, I had to use the time to explore the many different aisles. My favourite part was the “frozen breakfast” section which included frozen waffles and sausage muffins – grim. I get it, its cheap and easy.
The following morning we decided to stretch our legs and walk into town. Using whatever GPS signal we could get on Google maps, Tom managed to navigate the way to town – through numerous neighbourhoods. Looking back on it was pretty cool to see these small, unique houses with their cute front porches and “trespassers will be prosecuted” signs hanging from their fences.
At the same time I complained about that there was no pavement as I was concerned we might get hit by a truck. I trudged 5 paces behind Tom in a strop to demonstrate my lack of enjoyment.
After many, “are we nearly there yet?”, and finding $2 on the ground, we finally made it into the heart of Montgomery. I thought we might see more life once we made it into the town – but like our walk througb the neighborhoods, it was dead. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a place that was so quiet. Barely any people or traffic – it was like a zombie apocalypse had struck the town.
We began our first part of the day visiting the Rosa Parks museum. Rosa Parks was arrested after refusing to give up her seat on the bus to a white man. This began the Montgomery Bus Boycott which lasted from December 5th 1955 to December 20th 1956.
The museum was very interactive and walked us through the events that took place on the day of the arrest right up to the end of the bus boycott. Unfortunately we weren’t allowed to take pictures.
We then ventured over to the Dexter Avenue Baptist church where Martin Luther King Jr.was the pastor.
By this point the sun was out and it was hot. After being in so many cold places (and England) we were definitely not ready for the sunny weather. Obviously I began to complain – regularly. We decided to make one last stop at the Alabama State Capitol building.
Two Alabama State University students called us over outside the building and asked if we wouldn’t mind answering a few questions for a project they were working on. Stupidly, I didn’t ask what the project was for because I was on a high from being on camera. I normally hate doing this sort of thing but I gave it a go!
So you’re probably wondering what I was asked? The two lovely ladies asked me what brought me to Montgomery and why. Aside from the fact that it was a natural stopover on our journey to New Orleans, I replied that it is an important place to visit as it is rich in the history surrounding the Civil Rights Movement and I wanted to immerse myself in this.
So if you ever do find yourself in Alabama, I stress that you visit Montgomery. Though it is a small quiet town, you get to experience an American town oozing in important history.
Where did we stay? Red Roof Inn. I speak for both of us when I say that we were not happy with our stay here. Being on a bus for over six hours we just wanted to get to the room to shower and wash the day away, but the guy checking us in didn’t have a clue what he was doing. The room was OK apart from being right on the highway, but the breakfast and facilities were really basic. We were pretty pleased to check out of this one.
Would we stay here again? HELL NO.