Alternative Transportation

We were on our way out to eat on Saturday night when we spotted this sight at the drive-through window of the former Dairy Queen in Muscle Shoals, Ala., now called Shakers. The rider said he was from nearby Leighton and was visiting family in Muscle Shoals. Not sure if he was on hoof to protest high gas prices, but a bystander observed that a decades-old law on the books in Florence prohibits cars from traveling city streets. If this becomes a trend, Shakers is going to have to change its menu since the man rode off with an ice cream cone — and the horse didn’t get a thing.

Panic at the Pumps

Lunchtime on Friday, Sept. 12, in Tupelo, Miss., and you could feel — and see — the panic well ahead of any bad weather Ike was bringing. “If you need gas now, you’d better go get it before things get wild,” my husband had called me as I was walking around downtown (OK, I was really shopping, but he doesn’t need to know that). And he was right. As news of shut refineries and hurricane damages and low supplies and rising prices sped through town, lines lengthened at service stations and spilled out to streets — and pumps that didn’t have lines were already empty. I even saw a fight almost break out between two women in pickup trucks competing for vacant spot — but perhaps they had a history between them unrelated to filling up before gas hit $4. Anyway, it was too late. At 11 a.m., gas was $3.57. By 1 p.m., it was $4.20. And rising. Yikes.