Wednesday, August 31, 2011

August 31, 2011

August 31, 2011

My morning was taken up with two more beading classes.  I have made some interesting things and have enjoyed meeting a lot of other beaders.

Bill and I met for lunch and spent the time with people that we have known for several years.  There is always a lot of catching up to do because about the only time we see most of them is at RV gatherings.  It is interesting that most of these people are also geocachers.  We introduced several of them to the sport and always like comparing cache notes.

We spent part of the afternoon resting, before going back to the convention area for a social gathering with a group that we have gone to Mexico with several different years.  The year the Mexican Connection Chapter 8 is going to Puerto Penasco (aka Rocky Point) in February.  Bill and I have signed up to go with them.  

Another storm blew in tonight, but it was mild compared to the one a couple of nights ago.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August 30, 2011

August 30, 2011

After such a terrible storm last night, today dawned bright as a blue sky day can be. We had a lazy morning which was nice.  We have pushing ourselves lately, so it was nice to start the day relaxing.  

Bill’s first seminar was at 10:30.  While he was getting better educated on the ways of RV living, I roamed around the vendor area and visited with people we have met over the years.

When we finished eating lunch we decided it would be a good day to cache, so off we went.  The first one we found was in a sculpture area of a small park.  This particular artist’s rendition was of two geese flying over a pond with cattails around the edges.  There was a turtle in the pond.  That was where the cache was hidden.

The next “hunt” took us to another small neighborhood park.  We searched for about 20 minutes, but never did find the “treasure.”  Bill wasn’t feeling too chipper so I drove us back home and he took a long nap.  He is really an expert at napping.  He doesn’t call it napping, however.  He says he inspecting the insides of his eyelids.

Monday, August 29, 2011

August 29, 2011

August 29, 2011

Last night I completely lost the journal.  You talk about panic!!!  Our daughter, Lori, and I worked for nearly an hour last night trying to solve the problem and get it back up and running.  No luck, but this morning she persevered and got it going again.  Thanks, Lori!!!

This morning I went to a beading glass.  We were making bracelets that used some very tiny beads.  That tends to make me very nervous.  I was so slow at the project and discouraged, to say the least.  The design of this undertaking required seven beaded squares which will be joined together to finish the project.  I only finished one square in class...and that took three hours!  Ugh!  When I returned home I completed another square, in much less time.

While Bill went to seminars this afternoon I wend on some errands.  When we met back to the motorhome we were both tired, so naps were in order.  Refreshed from that, we set off to do some caching.  One cache area was guarded by a baby rabbit, who retreated when we got too close.  We were able to log three finds before returning to our home on wheels.  Not long after we arrived, a severe storm blew in, literally.  Very high winds rocked the rig and heavy rain and some hail pounded the roof.  All of this was accompanied by lightening and thunder.  Dark, heavy looking clouds added to the tension.  The storm lasted for more than an hour.  It was a relief when the weather finally calmed down.  

Sunday, August 28, 2011

August 28, 2011

August 28, 2011

This morning, I went for a creative writing workshop.  It was enjoyable and very favorable.  The leader knew a lot about publishing and is writing her second book now.

By the time Bill and I got home, he was “plum tuckered.”  I remembered that I still needed to sign up for craft classes, so I left him pretending to be Rip Van Winkle.  A bracelet making class caught my attention.  It is a complicated pattern, hopefully not above my skill level.  I also registered for a class making a memory wire necklace.

On the way back home I went by the rodeo arena and on out to the main road.  The sign at the highway didn’t say STOP.  It said WHOA.  Only in Wyoming!

Later in the afternoon we went caching.  The first one was hidden at the site of an outdoor museum featuring old coal mining equipment and oil well drilling Implements  After signing the log we spent time looking at the displays.  The largest coal mining apparatus used to 170,000 tons of coal at a time.  You will probably agree that it was no Tonka Toy!  Also on display was the world’s largest tire which cost of $13,000 when it was made in the 1980s. 

The temperature was in the mid-eighties today with a cloud cover adding to the relative coolness

Saturday, August 27, 2011

August 27, 2011

August 27, 2011

The sunrise this morning was gorgeous.  Thin clouds along the horizon appeared to be tinged with gold.  As soon as the sun came up the effect disappeared.

We moved the MH from Walmart to the Escapade site.  After getting our “house” in order we went to check in for the activities for the week.  

We set off in search of “treasures.”  After logging two caches we decided that the temperature was getting uncomfortable so we went back home.  I left Bill napping and went to check out the vendor area.  I roamed around for 1 1/2 hours before heading for home.  

The only thing wrong with this plan was that when I got to the parking lot I couldn’t find the Honda.  I didn’t have my “clicker” with me so I wasn’t able to press the panic button.  I was using our spare key.  Oh, dear!  In the heat I walked up and down each row.  No luck!  Some people driving through the parking lot noticed my plight.  They invited me into their air conditioned car and we drove around searching the area.  We finally found it, much further toward the edge of the parking lot than I remembered leaving it.   Not only will I not leave my keys at home again, but hopefully I’ll pay closer attention to where I park.  It was really hot out there roaming around.  Ugh!

The NASCAR race was on tonight so we spent the evening watching the cars go round and round and round!  While I watched I worked on a beading project.

Travel Totals:  Mileage, 5---caches, 2---critters, 1 (a small rabbit at the edge of the Walmart parking lot).

Friday, August 26, 2011

August 26, 2011

August 26, 2011

It was 70° when we left the Elks campground at 8:00 this morning.  
We went by Cabela’s to use their dump facilities.  Soon afterwards we were doing our Willie Nelson routine, “on the road again.”

In the eastern part of South Dakota when we came into the state on  I-90 we drove past thousand of acres of corn and ranch land.  We saw huge patches of yellow...growing sunflowers is a big cash crop in both South and North Dakota.  Sometimes, when the sun was on the flowers they seemed to glow.  As we were leaving the state driving west there were more mountains and trees in the landscape.  South Dakota is an interesting and beautiful state.

And then we entered Wyoming with the usual honking and yelling routine.

The first thing we did upon our arrival in Gillette was to fuel at Flying J.  We also got the propane tank filled.  After parking at Walmart and resting for awhile we drove to the CAM-PLEX where the Escapees Escapade gathering will be held next week.  

Coal mining is major, major in Gillette. We drove north of town where there was a viewing platform at one of the mines.  We watched the big machinery digging at several levels.  It was interesting to watch, but it would have been better if someone had been there to answer our questions.

On the way back into town we did some geocaching.  In spite of the heat (95°) we were able to log four finds.  Soon after getting back to the motorhome a rain and wind storm blew through.  At one time the storm was rocking the coach.

Today’s Travel Totals:  Mileage, 150---caches, four.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

August 25, 2011

August 25, 2011

This morning we went to the County Courthouse to get the address changed on our vehicle titles.  It was a completely opposite experience from yesterday’s fiasco.  It took about three minutes to get the titles updated.  Wow!  What a difference!

We found five caches, had lunch at Burger King, and found three more caches before going to Sam’s Club for some shopping.

The thermometer’s high today was 95°.  Tomorrow we head for Gillette, Wyoming.  Maybe it will be cooler there.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

August 24, 2011

August 24, 2011

Our goal for today was to get our address changed on our South Dakota drivers’ license and on our vehicle registration.  Well, we were only 50% successful and it was a difficult task, at that.  

We went to the DMV first.  We had taken all the paper that we thought we needed.  Guess what?!  There were two things that we needed, but didn’t have.  So-o-o-o, back to the coach to dig through files searching for more paperwork.

When we got back to the DMV our paperwork was checked and deemed satisfactory.  We took a number and waited for our turn at the window.  After waiting for about 20 minutes our number was called.  A very nice woman waited on us, only to break the news that one of the forms that was OKed wasn’t...OK, that is!  She said if we got back before she went to lunch that we wouldn’t have to wait in line again,  We could just go directly to her window.

Once again we made the five mile trek back to the MH for more paperwork.  We arrived back at DMV in time to finish everything by 12:30.  Whee!  We are legal once again.

I would say that the whole process “took an act of congress” to accomplished, but we all know that congress moves much more slowly than even the DMV.

Bill desperately needed a nap after all that running back and forth, so we went home until the middle of the afternoon.  The vehicle registration will have to wait until tomorrow.

Our mail forwarding service could file our voter registration form so we took care of that.  I had loaded six caches for that part of town.  Before getting back to the motorhome we had found five of them.  That was a good way to end the day 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

August 23, 2011

August 23, 2011

Since we were going to have to spend most of the day in an air conditioned place we decided that the Honda would be our choice.  We headed for the Badlands.

Highway 44 took us through Buffalo Gap National Grassland.  We found three caches close to the road.  I’m sure there were more along the way, but we haven’t had very good Internet service here and I was only able to load three caches.

After driving for about 60 miles we came to the tiny town of Interior, population 63.  We went into the town to drive around to see what it was like.  That took about three minutes!  Actually, it was an interesting place to old brick school building that appeared to still be in use, and three churches, two small and one medium sized.  There was a small market and two convenience stores.  

Soon after getting back on the highway we entered the Badlands National Park.  After going to the Ben Reifel Visitor Center we took a winding road through miles of unusual rock formations.

The north exit from the park took us to Wall.  We ate a late lunch at the famous Wall Drug and found a cache at the city park before driving back to Rapid City on Interstate 90.

It was fun and interesting playing tourist for the day.

Monday, August 22, 2011

August 22, 2011

August 22, 2011

Early this morning I discovered that yesterday’s blog did not post. 
While trying to correct the omission I made an even bigger mess.  I called my friend, Debbie Henderson, in Brandon, Mississippi and together we muddled around enough to finally get things straightened out.  Thanks, Debbie!

That was my first blog screw-up and hopefully my last.  However, those of you who know me well know that in the “no more screw-ups” department my expectations are way too high.

By mid-morning the prediction of high temperature for today was already showing signs of becoming a reality, so we moved the motorhome to the Elks Lodge.  We have 50 amp service and have had both air conditioners on for most of the day.

By mid-afternoon the temp was 95° and still going up.  It seemed like a good day to do a much needed indoor activity...laundry!  After checking out a couple of possibilities for the job, I left Bill at one to take care of the task while I went to some craft stores.  That sounds like a fair trade out, doesn’t it?  I got back to the laundromat in time to join Bill in a “folding party.”

We spent the rest of the day just trying to stay cool.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

August 21, 2011

August 21, 2011

The temperature was 57° when we left Mitchell at 7:00 this morning.  This is the first morning in a lo-o-o-ong time that I have started the day as Squaw Woman, riding along wrapped in a blanket.

Not only was it a cool morning with clouds in the sky, but the road was good with not much traffic, the pastures were green with lots of cows and calves, and sunflowers growing beside the road.  It was a pleasant way to spend a Sunday morning.

As we were driving along I noticed several yellow triangular shaped flags hanging from an overpass.  In my usual questioning way I asked Bill why they were there.  I looked over at him and, after 51 years of marriage, I knew he couldn’t come up with a single dumb answer.  Yup, its going to be a good day!

We crossed the wide Missouri River and wondered what an adventure it must of been for Lewis and Clark.  Speaking of curiosity, those guys must have been enormously curious to tackle a journey like that.

After driving for 2 1/2 hours we stopped at a Rest Area to eat breakfast.  I asked Bill if he would like for me to make an omelet.  He started to respond, but stopped.  I asked him what he was going to say.  He said, “Well, I was going to ask if you knew where the stove was.”  Would anyone like to make a wager on us making it to 52 years?!!

We stopped at an overlook at MM138 and watched the NASCAR race.  Afterwards we found a cache before going on into Rapid City.  Once again, Cabela’s is our home for tonight.

Travel totals:  Mileage, 270---elevation gain, 2000 ft.---cache count, 1---critter count, 1 turtle, 1 camel

Saturday, August 20, 2011

August 20, 2011

August 20, 2011

I was awakened this morning to the sound of raindrops on the roof.  Normally that wouldn’t be cause for concern, but when in Mitchell, SD, it is a major concern.  JP and Natalia were with us the last time we were here.  We had a terrible wind and rain storm.  It was the worst rain I have ever driven visibility.  JP was riding “shotgun” and telling me how close I was to the curb.  Luckily, we were on a wide street with no traffic (that we could see, at least) and close to our turnoff.  JP was able to spot the motorhome and we were soon inside, very wet, but safe.  Natalia, through all of this, was in the back seat, and in her usual calm demeanor, even in the face of impending disaster, was not saying a word.

Today Bill and I went to the world’s only Corn Palace, build first in 1892, but enlarged two times.  The present location, built in 1922, belongs to the people and is used for community activities, including basketball games, stage shows, and trade shows, just to name a few.  It was a very interesting place to visit.

By the time we got back to the MH it was early afternoon so we decided to stay at Cabela’s another night.  I spent the afternoon at a craft store downtown, while Bill napped and watched TV.

Friday, August 19, 2011

August 19, 2011

August 19, 2011

It was 64° with a blue sky when we left Sioux City this morning.  We didn’t realize that the state line of South Dakota was so close to where we parked for the night.  All of a sudden we were at Mile Marker 2.  As penance for neglecting our “home state” we did the state line routine (Honk, honk! Yahoo!) two times.

After we passed through Sioux Falls, we turned west on I-90.  We stopped at a Rest Area for lunch and quick naps before driving on into Mitchell.

After parking at Cabela’s, a fishing and hunting store, we went on our own kind of hunt...geocaching.

Travel totals:  Mileage, 155---cache count, 6---critter count, buffalo, maybe 20-25.  Too many to count as we cruise down the road.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

August 18, 2011

August 18, 2011

We left HWH under a gray cover of clouds.  We were nearly to Des Moines before the weather changed to a blue-sky day. With the green, rolling hills, the fields of corn and soybeans, and large farm complexes its like a big movie set.  

Yesterday, one of our geocaches was beside a field of soybeans. Although I knew soybeans grew in pods like other beans, until I got up close and personal with them I didn’t know that the pod was fuzzy. 

We turned north on I-29 and soon started seeing signs of the flooding Missouri River.  When we would get close to the river we could see how much farmland was underwater.  The freeway was sandbagged for miles.  That was a new experience for us.  As we got closer to Sioux City the sky got darker and darker.  Somehow, I don’t think this area needs anymore rain!  Before we got to Sioux City we ran into very hard rain and hail.  The visibility was almost nil so we pulled into a rest area for about 20 minutes.  When the storm let up we continued on our journey.  By the time we parked at Sam’s Club the rain had stopped.

Travel totals:  Mileage, 325---critter count, three wild turkeys in a pasture

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

August 17, 2011

August 17, 2011

Our motorhome was in Bay 4 ready to be worked on at 7:00 this morning.  The service manager and one of the engineers assessed the problem with one of the slide “rails” and decided on a plan of attack.  The estimated work time was all day, and estimated cost was $500.  We drove to the small town of Wilton for breakfast...biscuits and gravy.  Yum, yum!  When our tummies were happy we went caching.  One of them was cleverly hidden in a drilled-out hole in a chunk of asphalt.  Good hide, eh?  After finding another cache in a city park, we drove to Moscow and found one more, this one under a bridge.

On the way home, instead of waiting for a very long train to go by, we spent the time at a roadside produce stand.  We purchased corn, peaches, and a cantaloupe.  I also picked out a tomato, washed it at a faucet, and ate it during the rest of the trip back to the MH.  (Yes, Brent.  It was really, really good!)

It was a pleasant 73° this morning.  Back at HWH, Bill rested and I did some computer work.  I guess that he got a lot of rest (at least his jaws did), because after lunch he went to the customer waiting room and talked for a long time to other RVers waiting for service.  I stayed in the MH and read a book.  By 3:00 the work on our slide was finished.  That was good, but the best part of it was the final bill...$198.00.  Wow!!

We pulled the motorhome back into a spot with 50 amp service and spent most of the rest of the day working on projects. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

August 16, 2011

August 16, 2011

This morning after a leisurely breakfast, I went into Walmart to stock up on some food items.  By the time we got all of the groceries put away it was time for lunch.  There was a geocache at Wally World.  After logging the find, we drove to another cache that was fairly close by.  With the paperwork taken care for this one, we hooked the "toad" on and left Davenport.  I-80 took us to the tiny town of Moscow.  We parked at HWH, the company that makes the slide mechanism for most of the motorhomes.  We have a 7:00 a.m. appointment tomorrow.

This was a rather laid-back day.

Travel totals:  Motorhome miles, 34--geocaches, 2.

Monday, August 15, 2011

August 15, 2011

August 15, 2011

We waited at the tire store for a shipment of tires to come in.  While we waited we watched the NASCAR race.  Soon after we finished lunch, a semi full of tires rolled into the lot.  About 10 minutes later Bill pulled the coach into the bay.  We were told that it would take between 1 1/2 to 2 hours to put four tires on.  I am retired, but I had no desire to see the motorhome get re-tired.  Bill wanted to stay with the motorhome, so I headed to Walmart by myself.  As I walked out of the door I heard Bill tell the office staff that I have a black belt in shopping at Walmart.  Sounds good to me!

I arrived back at the tire shop just as he was pulling the MH out into the parking lot.  How’s that for perfect timing?!  We hooked the CRV on and “got out of Dodge.”  We have an appointment Wednesday morning at 7:00 to have some work done on the metal braces of our slide out.  Not knowing how long it will take to drive to Moscow, Iowa, Bill wanted to get as many miles behind us as we could.  In the process we crossed the Mississippi River (Honk, honk!  Yahoo!) into Iowa one more time.  Is there any danger of wearing the air horns out?

We parked at Walmart in Davenport, Iowa and went to dinner at Steak and Shake.  Yum, yum!

Travel Totals:  motorhome mileage, 178

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August 14, 2011

August 14, 2011

By 10:00 this morning, most of the 2143 motorhomes had left the convention site, so we decided to leave also.  We drove north to a tire company that will replace our four back tires tomorrow.  We are parking in their lot tonight.  There are two other coaches here, also.

We had planned to watch the NASCAR race this afternoon, but it was rained out.  They will try again tomorrow.

The temperature this afternoon was 75° and there was a bit of a breeze blowing so it was a good day to go out geocaching.  After eating lunch we drove to a town named Dane to do some caching.  We found four “treasures.”  It was fun being in a town with our name.  Less that a 1000 people live in Dane.  It is a nice, pleasant little town.  

Travel Totals:  Motorhome Mileage, 18---Geocaches, 4

Saturday, August 13, 2011

August 13, 2011

August 13, 2011

This was our last morning for donuts, hot chocolate, music, and a morning newspaper.  The convention ends tonight!  Sigh!

I had two craft classes this morning.  Bill stayed home to await the installation of our new HD satellite dish (Yes, Ron.  It has a blue light, too.).  It will be nice to have a better system and one more satellite.  

It rained off and all day, but it didn’t slow us down.  Before the end of the convention we spent some time looking at the Roadtreks.  They are still the best made Class B MHs.

We decided to go to Costco for hotdogs and vitamins!  Wow!  Do we know how to have fun!  Soon after we got on the freeway going West traffic came to a halt.  We were close to an exit so we decided to follow some of the “locals.”  The road ran along the side of the highway so we know that the traffic jam was several miles long.  The wreck involved a small car and a motorcycle.  Traffic going around the wreck was down to one lane.  It was an adventure getting to Costco.  In the East bound lane going home we saw another West bound lane wreck in the same area, causing a backup of traffic for several miles.  And all of this in the rain, or maybe because of the rain.

Friday, August 12, 2011

August 12, 2011

August 12, 2011

It was overcast and cool this morning when we went for donuts and hot chocolate.

My only seminar this morning was about blogging.  I don’t know if I learned anything or not.  I’m guessing that time will tell, eh?

After lunch Bill and I went to the ice cream social.  The Frustrated Maestros, a chapter within FMCA, were entertaining the crowd with band music. The lines for ice cream were very, very long, but moved quickly.  We took our ice cream cups into the vendor section and were eating as we walked around looking at the things for sale, when the fire alarm went off.  We were told to evacuate immediately.  Hundreds and hundreds of people poured out the doors and across the street.  Add to the bedlam tour busses that were parked at the curb and trying to get out of the area while trying to dodge people in wheel chairs and 50 members of the band carrying tubas, drums, bass violins, etc.  It was quite a “show,” and all for a false alarm.  This was a new experience to add to our other unusual adventures in life.

The rest of the day seemed to be “ho-hum” after all that excitement. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

August 11, 2011

August 11, 2011

It was 54° when we went for donuts and hot chocolate this morning.  At 8:00 I had a Christmas ornament class.  It was a good way to start the day.

At 9:30, Bill and I welcomed Byron and Pat Baker, who came to the convention on a day pass.  It was good to see them again.  We parked next to them at the locks on the Mississippi River.  We spent the morning at the vendor exhibits, which opened this morning.  There is always a huge crowd on opening day, but we enjoyed it anyway.  The Bakers had never been to an FMCA  Convention and were surprised at the number of vendors and all the things to for sale for RVers.

After lunch we went to the coach exhibits.  We all enjoyed going into some of the really big motorhomes.  Bryon did some serious looking, but Bill and I are content with what we have.  

When the Bakers left to return home in Lena, IL, Bill and I went to the MH for naps.  It was a busy, exhausting, but fun day.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

August 10, 2011

August 10, 2011

At 7:00 I went to the Convention Center to register for craft classes.  Most of the ones that I plan to take involve jewelry making of some kind or other.  Today I made a beaded braclet and started a glass fusing project.

The motorhome displays opened at 5:00 this afternoon.  We toured several of the larger ones and will look at some more tomorrow.

The weather was great today.  To bad we both had to spend most of the day inside.  That will be the norm for the next few days.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

August 9, 2011

August 9, 2011

It was a “blue sky day” this morning so we decided to hunt for a few caches.  Two of them involved hiking on park trails.  On one of them there was a sign warning of poison parsnip, which neither one of us had ever heard of before.  I’ve encountered poison ivy, poison oak, and stinging nettles, but poison parsnip was a new one.  The information on it at the beginning of the trail painted a grim picture of exposure to it, so we didn’t stray from the trail.  Therefore, we didn’t find the cache.  We did find a total of five caches, so that wasn’t a bad morning’s work.

One of the caches was at a Heritage Center.  It wasn’t what we had expected.  There was one really interesting aspect of it, though.  They were doing experiments with solar panels that tracked with the sun so they were always getting the full affect of the sun.  Bill spent a lot of time studying the whole operation.

Before we came home we shopped at the big Walmart.

The rest of the day went as usual...naps, Westerns, Internet time, Westerns, dinner, Westerns, etc., etc., etc.

Monday, August 8, 2011

August 8, 2011

August 8, 2011

We woke up to ground fog in the park.  It was beautiful, but a bit eerie.  At 7:00 we were moved from the holding area to the facility that will house the main part of the convention.  Once we were parked and settled in, I rested while Bill went around visiting with other motorhomers.

It rained off and on for most of the rest of the day.  The temperature was pleasant.  After lunch we went in search of a Post Office so I could mail a package to Houston.  

The rest of the day was spent inside the motorhome.  I got a lot accomplished on my sewing projects.

Travel Totals:  Motorhome mileage, 5 miles.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August 7, 2011

August 7, 2011

At 6:00 this morning we were hit by a very big rain and wind storm that lasted for an hour.  We had planned to go to the motorhome holding area for the convention at 7:00, but we delayed until the weather improved.  When we got to the holding area at 9:00 we were the first to arrive.  

We spent most of the afternoon relaxing and watching the NASCAR race.

I was able to get some of my sewing project done.  When the convention gets in full swing I won’t have much time for anything extra.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

August 6, 2011

August 6, 2011

We headed for a series of caches this morning that were on an old railroad bed, now a bike trail.  When we got close to the first cache, our GPSs pointed us about 75 feet off the trail, down a slope, and into the woods.  To get there we had to go through wild flowers...with many bees enjoying the nectar.  Those of you who remember my encounter with killer bees know that I give the little critters lots of room.  We decided to skip the caches and just go for a ride in the country.  This part of Wisconsin has many farms, rolling hills, and green fields.  It is a beautiful part of the country.

When we got back to Madison we stopped at Walmart for a few groceries.  This was the first time we have encountered underground parking at a Wally World.  We also learned that this was one of the four largest stores in the chain.  We have been to the Walmart in Guadalajara, Mexico that is reported to be the biggest in the world.  This one wasn’t that big, but much larger than we are use to.

For the past two nights we have parked at Sam’s Club on the west side of Madison.  We decided to move the coach to the big store, which has a rather small parking lot, by most standards.  With all that underground parking there isn’t much need for a huge above ground parking lot, I guess.  It did have plenty of space, though, for the Country Coach and couple of other motorhomes.

Friday, August 5, 2011

August 5, 2011

August 5, 2011

The temp was mild this morning so we went caching.  Unfortunately we only found two.  The caches that are placed in city parks have been a particular problem for us.  We will probably try to avoid them in the future.

The rest of the day was spent resting and relaxing.  I think we will both be glad when the FMCA (Family Motor Coach Association) convention starts on Monday.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

August 4, 2011

August 4, 2011

The temperature when we left Dubuque this morning was 80°.  That’s nice.  On our way out of town we got into a construction zone and had to detour, detour, detour!  In one small, old neighborhood there was a roundabout of a usual size, but narrow streets coming into it.  If we turned right to go around we would not have made it, so we turned left and in 15 feet we were on a street that would get us to the correct detour.  All of this confusion is sometimes called “a bump in the road,” meaning that 
things didn’t go as expected.

Well, yesterday I gave new meaning to “bump in the road.”  I was writing a message to Michelle and every time we hit a bump in the road, literally, I spelled some of the words incorrectly.  I just have to learn how to use the voice commands on my new iPhone!!!

The detour took us up onto a bridge that crossed the Mississippi River into Wisconsin.  You guessed it:  honk, honk, yahoo!  When we got to Madison we parked at Sam’s Club before going on a few errands.

This evening we found four caches.  Wisconsin was our last state to cache in of the 48 contiguous states.  

Travel Totals: motorhome miles, 94---caches, 4.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

August 3, 2011

August 3, 2011

We secured possessions, pulled in the slide, unhooked from electricity, and did a Willie Nelson...”On the road again, just can’t wait to get on the road again...”

In about 25 miles we came to the town of Fulton, IL.  There is a full sized replica of a Dutch windmill, built in Holland, dismantled and shipped, and assembled in Fulton.  It sits on a levee on the Mississippi River.  We were given a tour and shown how grain is ground.  It wasn’t making flour today, but the guide did explain the process.  It is no longer legal to move an authentic windmill out of Holland, so a replica built in Holland is the best way to get one over here.

We took time to find a cache and eat ice cream before continuing on our journey. Honk! honk! Yahoo! as we crossed the Mississippi River into Iowa and headed north.

After parking at Sam’s Club in Dubuque, IA and resting for awhile, I went to Walmart for groceries while Bill took another nap.

Travel Totals:  Motorhome miles, 95---geocaches, 1---Dutch windmill, 1.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

August 2, 2011

August 2, 2011

We went out to geocache this morning and had just about the worst day we’ve ever had.  We found one cache and had about six DNFs.  Ugh!  And it was too hot to be out and about, anyway.

John Deere headquarters is located in this area.  We went to visit the section that makes the harvesters (aka combines).  After climbing up into one of the green giants and seeing the aminities...air conditioner, GPS, radio, comfortable seats just to name a few...we visited with a farmer from eastern Illinois.  He shared a lot of information with us.  It was interesting getting a first hand report from someone who talks the talk and walks the walk...farming!

After going to Burger King for lunch we went home to rest.  Later, while Bill took care of the laundry, I continued my sewing project.  After dinner I worked on a beading project.

Tomorrow we depart this area.

Monday, August 1, 2011

August 1, 2011

August 1, 2011

This morning Pat and Byron Baker ask if we would like to go to Muscatine, Iowa to check on another COE campground.  Of course, we are always up for an adventure, so at 10:00 we began a journey that was going to entertain us for the next six hours.  

We drove to Shady Creek COE Campground.  One section of the CG was closed because the Mississippi River was out of its bounds and half of the sites were under water.  We drove on into Muscatine for a quick stop at Walmart before taking Hwy. 61 back into Davenport.

There were so many people in line at the Post Office that we decided to come back later to see if our general delivery mail from Lori had arrived.  It was 12:15 and there was only one postal employee to handle the “crowd.”  

The four of us decided that Golden Corral Buffet would be a good place to eat lunch.  And it was!  It had a better selection of food than we had ever seen at Golden Corral.  The thing that intrigued me was the chocolate fountain with marshmallows and big strawberries to “dunk.”  

We were able to get our mail before going back across the river to our campground.  Our journey today took us into Iowa and Illinois several times, but because someone else was driving, we didn’t do our state line routine (Honk, honk!  Yahoo!) for fear of upsetting the driver.  I guess that we could have considered a virtual routine and said it to ourselves, but we didn’t think of it.

It was a great day, but we were really tired when we got home, so long naps were in order.

Today’s Totals: motorhome miles, 0---snowy egret in the lagoon, 1