At the next stop on my little tour of middle Georgia, I visited a place with the silliest mascot I’ve seen in quite some time. It’s a cartoon pig with antlers. See, at Hudson’s, deer hunters are very, very welcome. There are dozens of mounted trophies all over the interior walls and a very large lunch crowd. Hunting is very popular on Saturday mornings in Crawford County, and Hudson’s is where everybody comes after a morning in the woods. The place was packed, and I think that I was very, very clearly the only non-regular here on this visit.
This being middle Georgia, the barbecue is served from a steam tray along a cafeteria-type line, where it is simmering in the sauce. This can go either way with me, and when it goes the wrong way, it’s like the end of the world. This went the right way. The meat tasted terrific, and the sauce, which has rather less mustard than you often find in middle Georgia, mixed perfectly with it.
Hudson’s opened in 2009, and has been such a success that they were able to open a second location, about twenty miles east in Byron, last year. I didn’t learn a great deal beyond that. They were very busy and the couple of employees with whom I did speak – teen girls, chiefly – didn’t know very much about how they smoke their barbecue. I just retired with my book, a sandwich and some stew, and watched and listened to all the people.
There’s a pharmacy that is open until noon in Roberta, but otherwise, Hudson’s might have been the only business that is open on Saturdays in this sleepy, former railroad town. I got a little bit of exercise walking around the old downtown and looking at the partially-reconstructed old rail depot, and then headed west on US-80. This highway basically divides the state in half, connecting the cities of Columbus, Macon, and Savannah. Along the way, I spotted a sign for Auchumpkee Creek Covered Bridge, and went to see that.
This bridge was originally built in 1892 but it has been almost completely renovated after a couple of fires. It’s no longer open to traffic, but there’s a nice parking area just beside it, and picnic tables. If you’re in the area of Roberta or Thomaston, it’s a great little destination, and if you come when the weather’s nice and warm, you can dip your feet in the creek, too! I stayed for a good while before moseying on to the next stop on my day trip.
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