Quick stop in Biloxi on our way to Louisiana. From online reviews etc, there is not much to see in Biloxi other than a famous lighthouse and lots of casinos. We opted to skip the casinos so that leaves just this lighthouse. This lighthouse is so famous in Mississippi it is on the State’s Licence Plates. We have seen numerous lighthouses during our time on the Gulf of Mexico. This particular lighthouse is not very big, but was built in 1848, Interestingly it was built with cast iron. In the nearby Visitor’s Center, a short video played on the history of this lighthouse. It has survived more than 20 “big” hurricanes. In 2005 Katrina severely damaged the structure and it took them 5 years to rebuilt it. During the video, pictures of post- Katrina were played and the area where we were standing was devastated. Biloxi really has still not recovered from Katrina. For approx. 10 kilometers, 95% of all ocean front properties are vacant, driveways leading to nowhere, old house foundations, and pieces of masonry fences protecting nothing. The fragments of the houses have long been removed Most of these properties are now for sale, but obviously no one is buying.
Day one in Mobile, we decided to explore Battleship Park. Learning about History is a very interesting part of travelling, in our opinion. Unfortunately much of World History is mixed with death, suffering, and terrible acts- Battleship Park is no exception. The two main attractions are the United States Navy U.S.S Alabama, a Battleship that was in service 1942-1947. The Alabama started her service protecting the British home front, but then moved to the Pacific to fight the Japanese. The Alabama was very successful in the Pacific. The next main attraction is the United States Navy U.S.S Drum, a submarine that served 1941-1946. The Drum was also very successful in the Pacific. Unfortunately their success cost the Imperial Japanese Navy many ships, and many lives. It is unfortunate that the World still deals with wars, and fighting to this day. Did we not learn from the past?
One point learned that was very interesting was after the 2 Atomic Bombs were dropped on Japan what Emperor Hirohito said
“the enemy has begun to employ a new and most cruel bomb, the power of which to do damage is, indeed, incalculable, taking the toll of many innocent lives. Should we continue to fight, it would not only result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the total extinction of human civilization.”
Not only was he concerned for the Japanese people, but all human civilization. If these atomic bombs continued to fall, it is hard to believe where we would be today. So in surrendering Japan not only saved themselves, but perhaps saved everyone. If you would like to read his complete speech you can view it here:
Battleship Park also contains many airplanes, it was amazing to see a B-52 bomber up close. this plane is massive. After about 5 hours here, we found the best campsite yet. A whopping $7.80 per night. Full hookups + hot showers.
After a colder night in Pensacola, we headed down to the Gulf Coast. Crossing our most expensive toll bridge yet- $7.50 one way. (Florida loves toll highways or Turnpikes and toll bridges) . The Weather was really terrible, windy and rainy, but that will not stop us. After an Emergency hot drink stop for Aya, We headed into the Visitor Center for some information on the Park. After a quick walk thru a Live Oak Forest, we drove 30 mins (across another toll bridge) to the Fort Pickens area. Fort Pickens was a U.S Army fort built in 1829. During the Civil War, it was a Union fort, engaged in combat with a Confederate fort across the water. Thousands of cannon balls were exchanged during this time. We skipped most of the U.S military history, but seeing a just about 200 year old military fort was interesting. The Beaches here were spectacular, probably the nicest we have seen so far. Too bad the weather was cold, and just as an FYI- do not try and drive on these beaches, the sand is very soft.
We are “plugged in” at an RV Resort. 4-7 days of relaxing pool side, beaches etc.
The best way to describe the weather is fair, although compared to British Columbia, the Weather is excellent. It has been cloudy most days, with rain at night. We have enjoyed relaxing poolside. We checked out Clearwater Beach today, but it was cold and windy, so we headed home. We will probably leave in 2 days as we have to meet Tyler’s Sister in New Orleans Dec 6th and have a few States to see on the way.
P.S. Christmas decorations / lights are going up tomorrow.