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Monday, May 4, 2009 - Paducah KY

At the Confluence, Ft Defiance Park, Cairo IL, May 4, 2009
At the Confluence, Ft Defiance Park, Cairo IL, May 4, 2009

Fort Defiance Park (formerly a State Park), Cairo IL

Between bridges eastbound on US60 at the crossing of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers one briefly touches down in Illinois in the wye between the rivers. At this confluence is the now abandoned Ft Defiance park. I thought I might spend the night here but after exploring the park for a while and getting a few pictures of this sad spot I sensed the vibe wasn't great and chickened out. Too bad, this would be a pleasant park to spend a day or two.

Night camp

Wal-Mart Supercenter in Paducah KY

Wal-Mart Supercenter Store #491, 5130 Hinkleville Road, Paducah, KY 42001 - (270) 444-0066

Sweet, Rich Hickory Milk

Hickory was another favorite. Rambling through the Southeast in the 1770s, the naturalist William Bartram observed Creek families storing a hundred bushels of hickory nuts at a time. "They pound them to pieces, and then cast them into boiling water, which, after passing through fine strainers, preserves the most oily part of the liquid" to make a thick milk, "as sweet as fresh cream, an ingredient in most of their cookery, especially hominy and corncakes." Years ago a friend and I were served hickory milk in rural Georgia by an eccentric backwoods artist named St. EOM who claimed Creek descent. Despite the unsanitary presentation, the milk was ambrosial - fragrantly nutty, delightfully heavy on the tongue, unlike anything I had encountered before.