Paris, Florida and Louisiana

Sumner, Missouri

I visited all of these places in one afternoon. Of course, all of them were towns in northeastern Missouri. Mexico wasn't too far away, either.

Paris is a nice, yet fairly nondescript, small town with a charming little main street. Nearly non-existent Florida is the birthplace of Mark Twain and finds itself surrounded by a large man-made lake that bears his name. I got my first sight of the Mississippi River while walking up and down the hills in downtown Louisiana. It's exactly what a person would expect an old river town to be, equal parts charming and industrial. The old, narrow river bridge on US Highway 54 is fantastic.

The photograph above is of Maxie, the "world's largest goose," in a tiny, tiny town of about 200 off the beaten path called Sumner. Most of Sumner has definitely seen better days; More than half of the town's main street is abandoned and dilapidated.

I'm in Hannibal for the night and will be exploring tomorrow morning. Then I'll be heading north towards Keokuk and more river towns in Illinois and Iowa.

Also visited: Avalon, Forker, Salisbury, Moberly, Madison, Victor, Perry, Ashburn and New London, Missouri. Atlas, Illinois.