A couple of trips to Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti finished out our stay in the Dearborne area.
This also completed our Michigan part of the trip and it was time to consider the rest of our year before heading back to Arizona.
Our ambition this year has been to fill in some of the “Blanks” in our list of States visited. You may have seen the columns to the right of the blog? They list “States and Provinces Visited”, “Countries Visited”, “Links to our Technical Pages”. “Links to out favorite places”. Links to “Maps of our travel” and lastly “Some of our favorite Blogs”.
The list of States visited is only the ones we've been to since we started full timing. We have traveled all our lives and visited many more countries and States in those journeys. The ones we have (so far) not visited at all are Minnesota, Nebraska and North Dakota. We want to get them “Taken Care of” this year. If we don't that's no big deal, there's always next year, or the year after.
Heading from Dearborne to Minnesota means heading west. West of here is Chicago, a city we have visited in the past and which I have visited a couple of times on business. Like all big cities the traffic is horrendous, and with us not liking Interstates we decided to avoid it completely.
|Lots of room at the Plymouth Elks Lodge|
We picked a route well South and found Plymouth and Kankakee, both had Elks Lodges. Plymouth have electric hookups for RV's but Kankakee doesn't say anything about allowing RV's but they do own a golf course. We called them and were told “Yes! We have no hook ups but you are welcome to stay overnight.
|Even more room at the Kankakee Lodge|
Off we set. The GPS in the rig decided on a route different than the one we had in mind and seemed to have a knack of finding roads that were closed due to construction. The resulting detours and wasted time had us very frustrated. In the end I turned the GPS off completely and Barbara did her usual great job of finding our way.
The Plymouth Lodge was pleasant but closed on Tuesdays, however the ER was playing golf and saw us so he came over to welcome us and gave us a Lodge Pin for our collection! Kankakee was closed too but the golf course was open and we spent a very pleasant and exceptionally quiet night there
So where to next?
|Down on the farm has lots of space too|
Once we were past Chicago we needed to head North. And who lives there? Why Sheri and David who we met up with back in June. (which seems a whole long time ago!!) We told them we were going to be passing by and they kindly invited us to stay on their farm near Beloit WI. We asked if we could get our mail forwarded to their address and we took the opportunity to order some small stuff from Amazon like cell phone batteries and an inverter we can hook up to the coach battery so we can watch TV when we don't have 110 volt power.
We had constant entertainment provided by these 2 guys.
Festus and Newly (think about the Gunsmoke TV show). 3 months old and constantly on the go, they liked to alternate between jumping in the paddling pool and rolling in the dirt. Their next trick was to come over for some cuddles which meant we had as much mud on us as they had on them! But they were too cute to push away.
Dinners out, lunches out, dinner at their place, it never stopped! Family and friends over for cookouts. David has a very good band and we went to one of their events for an evening. The diet is very much shot, I gained a couple of pounds almost instantly!
|David's Band, David up front.|
The cell phone battery we had order thru Amazon arrived with all the other stuff. Unfortunately it was junk and wouldn't hold a charge. We decided to just get Barbara a new phone, while we were out we could renew our prescriptions at Walmart.
10 minute job right?
HA! All afternoon! ATT store took 2 hours, only 1 person working. He was very helpful though and eventually we got done and over to Walmart for our prescriptions. Another 2 hours when the trainee at the pharmacy couldn't find us in the computer. Eventually he called somebody and they figured it out. We all have days like that and we have to keep smiling and saying “We're retired, there's no rush”.
|Beloit Snappers Single A associates of the Oakland A's|
We found that there was a minor league baseball team just a couple of miles from the farm and we went to watch the Beloit Snappers play the Kansas City Kernels. A fun evening of A class ball. Really fun and we had the best box seats in the stadium for $9 each. Brats for $2 and a large craft beer for $5, free parking and no traffic jam getting out. Got to love minor league teams.
|Snappy says Hi!|
There is a very interesting “Auto Museum” in nearby Roscoe IL. Except it's not just an auto museum, it's a collection of lots of things. There are themes that run thru sections of it like TV shows, Presidents, Movies, and Country Music. Each section has cars of course but also memorabilia and wax work figures of the people. There's one whole section that is the Illinois Stock Car Racing Hall of Fame. On top of that are several totally amazing cars. How about Mussolini's limo? How about JOSEPH STALIN'S armored limo with 3” thick armor platted windows? Or the Big Foot monster truck? We spent all day there just totally absorbed by it.
|Conway Twitty's Lincoln|
|Buddy Holly's Motorcycle Registration.|
We had a great time at Sheri and David's cookout too. A huge amount of good food, great company, tons of kids and a bunch of dogs was a perfect mix of fun and noise. The evening flew by and we eventually crawled off to bed deaf and happy.
They have super neighbors who keep chickens. Those chickens must be the worlds best egg layers! They constantly supplied us with the best eggs we have tasted in years. Luckily the diet we “Follow” (Almost), rates eggs as “0” points because we ate lots and took 2 dozen with us when it came time to leave.
|I spent a happy half hour mowing the lawn, not knowing the belt had come off so it didn't cut anything!|
Sadly we did have to leave. We could have stayed and enjoyed Sheri and David's company for ever. They wanted us to! But we have to move on. September is almost here and we want to head a little further West before we turn South again. We don't want to be this far North after the beginning of October. So reluctantly we left.
We hope to see them again in April in San Diego where Sheri's Brother Jason was our neighbor before we sold up and moved out on our adventures.
Thanks Sheri, Thanks David. See you, you muddy puppies!!