Long straight roads emblazoned with the Sunshine State's logo crossed other straight state roads at right angles and led us to Cawker City, where we paid our respects to the World's Largest Ball Of Twine. This Leviathan, which dates back to 1953, calls out both amazement -- whoa, that's big! -- and puzzlement -- why? Sadly, the gift shop was closed so we were not able to add to it.
Rolling further west into the Flat and in need of a midday break, we paused at Home Cookin', an excellent lunch spot in Stockton with little more curb appeal than a parking area crowded with pickup trucks. Ah ha, there's a good one! It was.
Like the Cosmosphere, twine, latest model airliner, and the cropduster that was flying straight and low along the road as he lined up for each pass over the adjoining fields, the "best BLT ever" did not shake the young critic's negative opinion of the Kansas flatlands. When we crossed the border, he cheered -- and then, seeing that the Flat stretched well into eastern Colorado, dissolved into anguish.
Fortunately for his spirits, our last touring stop of the day was the Kit Carson County Carousel, Philadelphia Trolley Company Number 6. We all had a good time riding the beautifully restored collection of horses, dogs, and more exotic beasts!
A carousel attendant's observation on gender self image: boys scramble to be first to ride the horse fitted out in medieval armor, while girls go for the hippogriff, the only fantasy animal in the carousel's menagerie. Individual differences still matter, however; a sunny blonde princess outraced me to the lion and mounted it, but hearing me behind her, turned politely and sincerely offered to let this kindly older stranger ride it. I thanked her but declined, and went to choose a less noble steed.
A long day! We finished with serious takeout Mexican food and laundry at the Quality Inn in Limon, Colorado.