Saturday, October 29, 2016

Made it to Kentucky

We spent Saturday night in Fairfield, NE and then spent part of Sunday touring around.  We
stopped in the tiny town of Deweese, NE where on of Gerry's ancestors lived and worked - he wondered if the old elevator in the town was one of the ones he had owned.  Of course no one in the town knew but that was likely in the late 1800's.  People were incredibly friendly - we talked to one fellow about some history, so he called his mom, who found an  edition of an old  history book, and then she set out to find us (which she did).  That was so nice.
A very old bale picker-upper
Later in the day we hit the road and stopped at Marysville, KS and found a terrific little campground, full hookups, for free.   It is a quaint town with many brick streets, and the first station on the Pony Express route.   Around the park there are numerous benches which are all brushed aluminum with a name and design cut in the back.  As we walked around town, we took some pictures, when we were stopped to see where we were from - another very pleasant meeting.  We were told to stay until the weekend as they were having a celebration of the black squirrels.  Apparently Marysville is one of just a couple of town in the United States that have this particular type of black squirrel and the are certainly plentiful in the park.

As we drive the roads, it is hard not to notice they farmyards.  Every single yard is neat, and every one has all the grass nicely mowed - often acres of it.  Harvest is in full swing - a lot of corn although we are starting to see more soybeans.

We cross the Mississippi River into Illinois where we camp down by the river in an area
Love the tree colours
provided by the Army Corps of Engineers.  While it is very basic - just an area to park the scene looking across the river is very pretty.  We watched the barges moving up and down the river - no idea what they were hauling.  Not only were goods being moved by barge, but also by train as we found out throughout the night.  You know how trains tend to blow their whistles at crossings, well the crossing must have been twenty miles wide.

Next stop is Flora, IL at the Charley Brown campground.  The name made us want to stop and see the campground.  It is part of quite a large park which was great for taking a walk.  What a great night - absolute quiet which was such a treat from the many trains from the night before.

An old town
Next stop - Walmart in Newburgh, IN.  Online ordering is very popular here as a steady stream of customers pulled up to pick up their groceries.  Here they bring your order out to you.  This town is the home of SMI manufacturing where we had an appointment to have the brake system from our old motorhome installed.  While the installation was being done, we went for a walk along the Ohio River. We noticed an elderly fellow bend down to pick up something.  Having just come by there and we hadn't seen anything we had to go and see.  It was under a pecan tree so we filled our pockets with pecans.  We met a local couple and stopped to chat with them.  They say everyone has a twin and I think we met my sister-in-law's sister's twin - Eleanor's sister Doreen.  This gal looked like her (although shorter), talked like her, and had the same mannerisms - how interesting.

Notice the black fences!!
On to Lexington, KY.  Once we found the campground (thank you GPS for taking us in circles and telling us to turn at non-existent roads), the first thing we notice is the lack of white fences.  I thought all the fences were white but not what we have seen so far - they are black.  We are camped at the Kentucky Horse Park Campground which is a state park - a very nice campground and right next door to the horse park where we have just spent the last couple of days.  While most of the horses are thoroughbreds and retired race horses, they have quite a variety of horses on display and in demonstrations.  This weekend there actually were three events being held that were competitions of these retired horses.   Many are retrained to compete in dressage and jumping competitions.  There is a huge indoor arena where we spent most of this afternoon watching the following competitions: hunter class, competitive trail, open class, barrel racing, polo, jumping class, working class - and that isn't all of the different competitions being held.
 The left shows how graceful the horse is when jumping.  The right shows the horse that doesn't want to jump, and off the rider goes.
A couple of horses that have quite a history.  One was used by the gypsies, and the other during medieval times.

 Then there was the miniature pony that was being ridden by the headless horseman!!  There even was a chance for the kids to practise their jumping skills

 Thank goodness for the use of the horse - it sure made things easier for us women.  Also a  competition of the working class.

On the left was part of the open class - the horse was dancing to music.  And then Gerry decided to enter the competition - could find the right class.

We have really enjoyed our visit to the Kentucky Horse Park.  Now it is time to tour some of the other places in the area plus we need to take a drive out into the county.  And one must not forget a tour or two of the bourbon distilleries that are in the area.

Have a great week and I hope you will be back next week!!


Saturday, October 22, 2016

2016-2017 Travel Season is Here

It's time for my annual blog which happens only during our travel times - it has been only during the winter.  This week's blog will be rather short since we just left a couple of days ago - October 20th.

The border crossing was pretty easy - they checked the fridge and took some radishes and part of an onion but they gave them both back - the radishes were mistaken for tomatoes and the onion was not a problem.  We spent the first night in Bismark, ND at a super Wal-Mart so we could pick up a few groceries since we come  with no meat and very few fresh vegetables. 

So far the trip has been very uneventful - just as one likes.  The weather has been terrific - the past couple of days has been shorts and T-shirts,  clear skies, and just a little wind.  It's pretty easy to know the direction of the wind - it is always a head-wind.
On our way, we stopped for fuel and there was a trucker taking a break with his carry-out satellite sitting beside his truck.  I guess that's a great way to pass some time but it did look rather strange.  Then it was on to our next stop - Rosebud Casino just on the South Dakota/Nebraska border.  It was cheap camping - $4.10 was our loss!

Corn harvest is in full swing as we saw many combines and trucks working during this year's harvest.  There are large piles of corn near bins as it apparently is a bumper corn crop.

Tonight we are in the little town of Fairfield, Nebraska.  Gerry's great-great grandfather owned some grain elevators here and in nearby towns so we thought we would stop in and see the town as it is today.  It's a nice little town with a very popular Bar and Grill.  The trees here in town are very pretty with the fall colours.

Until next week, have a great week!