THE MAPLE LEAF PARADE AT THE OKTOBERFEST IN LA CROSSE SHOULDN’T BE CALLED A “PARADE”, IT AN EVENT !!! AS A SPECTATOR IT BEGINS THE EVENING BEFORE AS YOU TRY TO STEAK OUT YOUR CURBSIDE SPACE FOR VIEWING THE PARADE. THE POLICE PATROL THE STREETS CHASING OFF SQUATTERS UNTIL MIDNIGHT. AT MIDNIGHT, THAT GAME ENDS, AND YOU CAN ROPE OFF YOUR AREA, AND GO HOME AND CATCH A NAP, UNTIL ABOUT 7:00 AM, THEN IT’S BACK TO DEFEND YOUR TERRITORY. THEY CLOSE THE STREETS AT 6:00 AM FOR THE MARATHON RUNNERS, SO MARY AND I LEFT CAMP AT 5:00 AM TO ILLEGALLY PARK THE TRUCK AT THE SIGHT BECAUSE WE HAD ALL THE BRATS, COOLERS, TABLE, AND CHAIRS. IT’S MORE LIKE A CAMPSITE, AND BEING THE 46TH ANNUAL PARADE ALL VERY ORGANIZED. THE SAME FAMILIES STEAK OUT IN THE SAME AREA EVERY YEAR AND EVEN BRING IN A PORT-POTTY FOR THE EVENT. IT COSTS EVERYBODY $1-$2 DONATION THE FIRST TIME YOU USE THE CAN AND THEN IT’S FREE AFTER THAT. BY 9:00 AM YOU’RE INTO THE BRAT’S & BEER, OR BLOODY MARY’S FROM SLOOPY’S BAR ON THE CORNER. THE PARADE FINALLY BEGINS AT 10:00 AM. THE PARADE LASTS FOUR HOURS, AND MUST INCLUDED EVERY PRINCESS AND MARCHING BAND FROM THE THREE STATE AREA. HELL MY ARM WAS GETTING TIRED JUST WAVING BACK AT THOSE BEAUTIFUL YOUNG LADIES, AND THE POLITICIANS, FROM LOCAL JUDGE RIGHT UP TO GOVERNOR. BUT EVERYONE LOVES A PARADE !!! ESPECIALLY WITH A BEER IN ONE HAND AND A BRAT IN THE OTHER !!! TRADITIONALLY AFTER THE PARADE IT’S OFF TO THE NORTH SIDE FEST GROUNDS, THE BEER TENT, AND THE LIVE BAND. MARY AND I MUST BE GETTING OLD , AS WE RETURNED TO CAMP FOR A NAP INSTEAD. BUT NOT TO WORRY IT’S OFF TO THE BEER TENT, AND ENTERTAINMENT TOMORROW NIGHT TO HEAR THE WHITE SIDEWALLS, A 60’S MUSIC BAND, WELL KNOWN THROUGH OUT THE TRI-STATE AREA.
WRITTEN BY REX
Saturday, September 30, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
Oktoberfest 2006 has begun!! Our day began when we picked up Chad and went to the Barrel Inn to play in the weekly “Texas Hold’Em” tournament. The buy in is $20 and you get $800 in tournament chips to play with. We started out with 11 players and two tables. Of the three of us, Rex did the best - he ended up placing 4th. Of course only the top three are in the money. It was a fun way to spend some time with my son, Chad, doing something he really enjoys.
From poker to the Southside Fest Grounds to see the parade that accompanied the “Golden Keg” from the brewery to the fest grounds. The “tapping” of the “Golden Keg” is the traditional beginning of the fest. The fest grounds were very crowded and everyone seemed to be having a very good time.
Next on our list was a trip to the grocery store to buy 5 dozen brats. That is our contribution to the food for the parade. Maybe I should explain how things work at the Oktoberfest Maple Leaf Parade. People actually rope off areas of the boulevard, set up chairs, pop ups, people cook all kinds of food, and some even arrange for a “port-a-potty” on their area. Most businesses that are on the parade route have trailers set up for their friends to stand or sit on to watch the parade. It is really something. Oh I should mention, this parade is about 4 hours long.
Next it is back to camp to cook the brats on the Big gASS Grill. Rex is so good and he really loves doing this. I am really thankful that he does and is so good natured about it. So then we had to pack the truck with everything we will need to take to the parade. We are planning to take that stuff there at 5 AM. If we wait much later than that we will not be able to drive to the spot reserved to watch the parade and would have to walk a long distance and try to carry all the stuff we need including two large coolers, the Big gASS Grill , bag chairs, ..actually it would be impossible. Anyway it is going to be a really long day tomorrow!!
Thursday, September 28, 2006
AN OIL CHANGE FOR THE TRUCK.“SIR, YOUR THROWOUT BEARING IS MAKING A NOISE.”“YA SO, IT’S BEEN MAKING A FUNNY NOISE FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS NOW………………………..”
WRITTEN BY REX
FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT BUY GAS AND TURN THE KEY, LIKE ME, A NOISY THROWOUT BEARING LEADS TO A NEW CLUTCH FOR THE BIG RED TRUCK, TO THE TUNE OF $1,000.00 BUCKS. NEW TIRES FOR THE TRAILER, AND NOW, NEW CLUTCH, WHAT’S NEXT?
THE WEATHER HERE IN LA CROSSE HAS BEEN TYPICAL FOR FALL IN WISCONSIN, RAIN, CLOUDS, MORE RAIN, A SMALL PATCH OF SUN HERE AND THERE…… SURE MAKES ME THINK ABOUT ALL THE SUNSHINE IN NEVADA. I‘M NOT COMPLAINING, AND THE LONG RANGE FORCAST IS ON OUR SIDE, ALLOWING US TO STAY CAMPED IN LA CROSSE UNTIL OCTOBER 16TH, WE HOPE.
OKTOBERFEST OPENS TOMORROW SO DIG OUT THE DRINKING GLOVES AND GET READY TO HIT THE STREETS !!!!
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
This vacationing is hard work!! I feel like I have been running since we hit Wisconsin….The distance between Mt. Hope (where my Mother is) and La Crosse is 90 miles. I have driven that one way every day for the last four days…good thing the Honda gets excellent gas mileage…dosen't’t hurt that the price of gas is falling either.
The fact that my Mother has been ill has created several plan changes. It will be hard to leave her. She is doing better and I sure hope that continues!
For the remainder of this vacation, I am going to have to be very organized. There are still three people I promised to contact and get together with and I may have only a week left…WOW! Anyway I am confident it will all work out.
Rex returned from his trip to Green Bay in time to go to Heather’s celebrating Ali’s fourth birthday. It was a fun time with LOTS of kids….Rex and I particularly enjoyed the bars that are within walking distance.
Tomorrow is a day of shopping with my daughter, Nikki. It should be fun and interesting….I’ll write a report on that trip!!
Monday, September 25, 2006
TODAY WAS A VISIT TO GREEN BAY TO SEE MY MOM AND MY BROTHER AND FAMILY. IT'S A FOUR HOUR DRIVE FROM LA CROSSE. EVERYONE HERE IS FINE, AND I EVEN TOOK TIME TO VISIT THE "HOLY LAND", LAMBEAU FIELD. THEY HAVE A GREAT GIFT SHOP AND BAILY NEEDS A NEW PACKER DOG COLLAR. THIS EVENING GRANDMA TOOK US OUT FOR STEAK DINNERS AT THE PRIME QUARTER. IT'S A NEW PLACE AND YOU COOK YOUR OWN STEAK OVER CHARCOAL. IT WAS DELICIOUS, YOU JUST CAN'T BEAT CORN FED BEEF FROM THE MIDWEST !!! TOMORROW IS A QUICK BUSINESS MEETING AND THEN BACK TO LA CROSSE, IN TIME FOR SHRIMP AT THE LOGAN? IS IT WEDNESDAY NIGHT ALREADY? AND FRIDAY IS THE THE TAPPING OF THE GOLDEN KEG AND THE BEGINNING OF OKTOBERFEST.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY 30 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER, AMY !!!
FOR THOSE OF YOU MISSING MARY'S ENTRIES, SHE'S STILL HERE AND I PROMISE TO MAKE HER WRITE REAL SOON, IF I CAN PRY HER AWAY FROM THOSE PRECIOUS GRANDDAUGHTERS.................
Sunday, September 24, 2006
ANOTHER BIGG GASS GRILL DAY. WE HAD A GARAGE PARTY AT TODD AND DI’S TO WATCH THE PACKER VICTORY, AND FIRED UP THE BIGG GASS GRILL TO MAKE 12 INDIVIDUAL PIZZAS. WE HAD A BLAST SHOWING OFF AND MADE EVERY KIND OF PIZZA IMAGINABLE. DAM IT WAS GOOD !!!
WRITTEN BY REX
Saturday, September 23, 2006
TODAY THE GOAL IS TO FIND OLD FRIENDS WE WORKED WITH AT THE MISS MARQUETTE WHERE WE BROKE INTO THE CASINO BUSINESS.WE STARTED WITH LUNCH IN BALLTOWN WITH RANDY AND NOREEN. THEY HAD INVITED BOB KOTES AND HIS WIFE ALONG ANG WE ENJOYED CATCHING UP OVER A LATE LUNCH. ELOSIE KOTES HAD THE QUOTE OF THE DAY IN REGUARDS TO CASINO LIFE, “NOTHING CHANGES EXCEPT THE COLOR OF THE CARPET”. HOW TRUE, IN ALL THE CASINOS REPRESENTED, THE STORIES ARE ALL PRETTY MUCH THE SAME.ELOSIE IS STILL DEALING AT THE DIAMOND JO IN DUBUQUE, AND THEIR TOKE RATE DROPPED IN HALF WHEN THE DOG TRACK OPENED WITH TABLE GAMES. BOB TOOK HIS SOCIAL SECURITY AT 62 AND WORKS TWO SHIFTS A WEEK AT THE DOG TRACK DEALING CRAPS. RANDY AND NOREEN ARE BOTH EMPLOYED AT JOHN DEERE IN DUBUQUE.
WRITTEN BY REX
FROM LUNCH WE HIT THE BOAT AND GOT LOT’S OF SMILES AND HUGS ALL AROUND. THEY HAD 925 ON BOARD BECAUSE THERE WAS A LASER LIGHT SHOW AND A BIG DRAWING. MORE NEW CASINO’S IN IOWA HAS ALSO LOWERED TOKES AT MARQUETTE, AND SEVERAL DEALERS HAVE MOVED ON TO WORK THE NEWER CASINOS.NEXT WAS THE WAUKON FAIRGROUNDS FOR THE WEDDING OF MIKE MEYER AND TONYA JONES. A BONUS COLLECTION OF OLD MARQUETTE FOLKS FOR US. SCROOGE AND MARY LOOK FANTASTIC AND ARE STILL WITH THE ISLE OF CAPRI IN BOONEVILLE, MO. TONY SMITH IS IN ELKADER AND WENT TO WORK FOR SWAN’S FOOD CO. MIKE MEYER IS A LINEMAN FOR THE COUNTY, AND TONYA IS IN A DENTAL OFFICE. MELLISA’S TWINS ARE IN KINDERGARTEN, AND VIKIC BODLEY LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE SHE DID WHEN SHE GRADUATE HIGH SCHOOL AS A FRANKVILLIE GIRL 15 YEARS AGO, AND SHE IS IN MPLS. WORKING RETAIL, AFTER A SUMMER OF WORKING AT THE TRACK WITH THE HORSES. DUANE GERLEMAN STILL TELLS IT LIKE IT IS, AND IS ONE OF THE BEST STORY TELLERS EVER.
TOMORROW IS THE PACKER GAME AT THE BADGER BAR (TODD’S BASEMENT), AND OUT COMES THE BIGG GASS GRILL FOR SOME HOMEMADE PIZZA AND SHOWING OFF.
Friday, September 22, 2006
BEFORE I FORGET, I BETTER BACK UP TO CHEESEDAYS IN MONROE. WE KINDA GOT THINGS BACKWARDS THIS YEAR AND STARTED WITH LIMBURGER CHEESE SANDWICHES AT NEW GLARUS. IT WAS GRANDMA, REX, HANS, NEIL, AND JAKE. NO WIVES WERE PRESENT, AND WE TOLD OLD STORIES AND HAD A NICE VISIT. NEXT WE DELIVERED GRANDMA TO NED’S FOR THE NIGHT AND BAR HOPPED OUR WAY TO CAMP WITH STOPS IN JUDA AND BRODHEAD. SATURDAY MORNING WAS THE BIG BREAKFAST WITH 25 PEOPLE ATTENDING. MARY’S DAUGHTER HEATHER & DAUGHTERS, UNCLE JIM & JANEEN, UNCLE NED & SHARON, COUSIN GRAIG & KIDS, COUSIN DARIN & WIFE & KIDS, COUSIN JOANNE, HANS & JAKE, NEIL& DAUGHTER LAURA, & HUSBAND TO BE, AND OF COURSE GRANDMA. IT WAS GOOD TO SEE SO MANY OF THE FAMILY. I’LL GET A WEBPAGE OF PICTURES UP EVENTUALLY AND LET YOU KNOW WHEN IT’S POSTED.
WRITTEN BY REX
VISITING LINGERED INTO THE AFTERNOON, AND LATE IN THE AFTERNOON A RUN TO NEW GLARUS WAS ORGANIZED TO MEET AUNT KATHY ON HER WAY IN FROM GREEN BAY. SATURDAY NIGHT HAD US ON THE SQUARE IN MONROE FOR CREAM PUFFS, AND OF COURSE A FEW BEERS. WE STOPPED BY THE CHEESE MAKERS BALL AT TURNER HALL TO SAY HELLO TO COUSIN JANICE & DENNIS. WE LANDED IN BRODHEAD AT THE J&M TAVERN TO ESCAPE THE CROWDS.
SUNDAY MORNING BREAKFAST CAME OFF WITHOUT A HITCH, AS MARY BAKED TWO AND HALF DOZEN BISQUITS, AND I MADE A DUTCH OVEN FULL OF COUNTRY GRAVY AND SAUSAGE. STICKY BUNS OUT OF THE BLACK POT AND SWISS CHEESE ROUNDED OUT THE MENU WITH A SMALLER CROWD ON HAND. SUNDAY AFTERNOON WAS THE BIG PARADE FEATURING “TWO GUYS WITH A BANNER” AND CHEESDAYS 2006 WAS DISMISSED FOLLOWING THE PARADE.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
LAST YEAR AT CHRISTMAS TIME I DISCUSSED WITH MARY GETTING AN ELECTRIC COFFE MAKER. WOULDN’T IT BE NICE TO PROGRAM THE COFFE MACHINE TO BREW UP MY COFFEE 15 MINUTES BEFORE I GOT UP? THEN AGAIN IS TAKES TWICE AS MANY COFFEE GROUNDS IN A DRIP COFFEE MAKER, IT TAKES UP A LOT OF COUNTER SPACE, MARY DOESN’T DRINK COFFEE, AND I’VE BEEN HAPPY PERCULATING MY COFFEE ON THE STOVE WITH A POT PAULIE BOUGHT ME YEARS AGO. SO THE IDEA HIT THE BACK BURNER, SO TO SPEAK.
WRITTEN BY REX
PART OF MY MORNING COFFEE RITUAL IN THE EARLY DAYS OF CAMPING AT YELLOW RIVER WAS, “TIRE BANGING”, HEY MARY DID YOU TIRE BANG TODAY? THIS IS REX’S CAMP LINGO FOR MAKING COFFEE THE NIGHT BEFORE, AND TO GET RID OF YESTERDAYS COFFEE GROUNDS YOU TOOK THE LITTLE BASKET OUT SIDE AND BANGED THE OLD GROUNDS OUT BY HITTING THE BASKET ON A VEHICAL TIRE. FILL UP THE POT WITH WATER AND COFEE, SET IT ON THE BURNER AND IN THE MORNING ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS LITE UP THE GAS BURNER.
BUT OUT WEST, TIRE BANGING WOULD PILE UP WITHOUT RAIN AND GREEN GRASS TO HIDE THE EVIDENCE, SO WE EMPTIED THE GROUNDS IN THE SINK. WHILE CAMPED IN BRODHEAD WE HAD THE GALLY TANK OPEN SO THAT THE DISHWATER WOULD JUST DRAIN OUT ON THE GROUND, ANOTHER THING YOU CAN’T GET AWAY WITH CAMPED IN THE DESERT. IN THE MOVE FROM BRODHEAD TO LA CROSSE I HAD THE SEWER CAP IN PLACE, BUT FORGOT TO CLOSE THE GALLY TANK. WHEN I GOT TO LACROSSE AND SET UP CAMP I REMOVED THE SEWER CAP TO FIND MY 3 INCH SEWER PIPE COMPLETELY FILLED WITH COFFEE GROUNDS FROM THE LAST YEAR AND HALF THAT HAVE SETTLED AND STAYED IN THE BOTTOM OF THE GALLEY HOLDING TANK. NO WONDER WHEN I CHECKED THE GALLY TANK GAGE IT READ 1/3 FULL EVEN WITH THE VALVE OPEN. IT’S 1/3 FULL OF COFFEE GROUNDS !!!
THE CURE OF COURSE IS A MISTER COFFEE, FROM WALMART, THEN THE GOUNDS WILL GO OUT WITH THE PAPER FILTER AND THE GARBAGE. MR COFFEE IS AN AMAZING MACHINE, FULL OF LED LIGHTS, BUTTONS, CLOCKS, AND AN EASY TO USE 43 PAGE USERS MANUAL IN TWO LANGUAGES. I GOT THE MODEL WITH THE METAL THERMAL POT SO YOU SHOULDN’T BE HEARING ABOUT A BROKEN COFFE POT NEXT.
IF YOU STOP OVER SOME NICE MORNING FOR COFFE WITH ME, AND THINK THE COFFEE TASTES LIKE DISHWATER, YOU’LL KNOW I’M STILL WORKING ON GETTING THE COFFEE GROUNDS OUT OF MY GALLEY HOLDING TANK.
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
A BEAUTIFUL FALL DAY IN WISCONSIN. THE SUN IS SHINNING, AND THE LEAVES ARE BEGINNING TO CHANGE TO THEIR BRIGHT FALL COLORS.
WRITTEN BY REX
WE WERE UP EARLY THIS MORNING TO TAKE MARY¡¦S HONDA IN FOR SERVICE, AND DESPITE MARY¡¦S RULE OF, ¡§NO SWEATING, NO SHOVELING, AND NO SCRAPPING, ANYMORE!¡¨, MARY HAD TO FIND A SCRAPPER TO CLEAN THE FROST OFF HER WINDOWS. ƒºWE STOPPED AND VISITED HEATHER, AND THEN ON TO NIKKI¡¦S, WHERE I JUMP ON THE INTERNET AND POST THE BLOG FOR YESTERDAY, OFF OF THE HANDY LITTLE TRAVEL DRIVE.
NEXT WAS TO ENJOY THE SUNSHINE IN CAMP WHILE REMOVING THE LAKE TAHOE PINE SAP OFF MY WINDSHEILD AND TRUCK.THIS EVENING IT¡¦S A TRIP TO THE LOGAN TAP WHERE THEY SELL YOU A DOZEN NICE SIZED SHRIMP RAW FOR $2.25. YOU PEEL THEM YOURSELF, AND THEN THEY GRILL THEM ANYWAY YOU WANT THEM, CAJUN STYLE, LEMON PEPPER, GARLIC AND BUTTER, YOU NAME IT. ONE DOZEN LEADS TO TWO DOZEN, AND ONE BEER LEADS TO TWO BEERS¡K¡K¡K¡K¡K YOU GET THE PICTURE !!!
BLOGGING COMMENTS ON THE GREEN BAY PACKERS WILL BE HELD TO A MINIMUM FOR THE TIME BEING, BUT I AM SCHEDULLED TO BE IN GREEN BAY NEXT MONDAY AND TUESDAY.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
WE’VE DECIDED TO STAY ON AT VETERANS PARK IN WEST SALEM FOR THE REST OF OUR VISIT. THE CAMPING FEE INCLUDES ELECTRIC SO WE’VE GOT THE ELECTRIC HEATER OUT, AND RUNNING THE HOT WATER HEATER ON ELECTRIC AS WELL. MIGHT AS WELL GET OUR MONEYS WORTH.I DON’T THINK LA CROSSE HAS EVER HEARD OF WI-FI, I HAVEN’T FOUND A HOT SPOT YET, AND I’VE BEEN SEARCHING .
WRITTEN BY REX
Monday, September 18, 2006
THINGS HAVE SETTLED DOWN A LITTLE AFTER THE CONCLUSION OF CHEESEDAYS, BUT IT WAS STILL A PACKED FULL DAY. MY MOM WAS THE FIRST TO STAY OVER NIGHT IN THIS CAMPER AND WE LAID THE TABLE FLAT TO MAKE A BED FOR HER. THE FIRST ORDER OF BUSINESS WAS A BUYING TRIP TO THE DECATER CHEESE FACTORY JUST UP THE ROAD. WE ARE STOCKED UP WITH CHEESE NOW, AND I EVEN BOUGHT A LIMBURGER TO TORMENT MY SON-IN-LAW WITH WHEN WE GET TOGETHER IN NOVEMBER CAMPING.
WRITTEN BY REX
UNFORTUNATELY FOR US THE WEATHER CHANGED TO CRAP, IT USUALLY DOES THIS TIME OF THE YEAR JUST TO REMIND THE GOOD FOLKS OF WISCONSIN THAT WINTER IS NEXT. THE FORCAST FOR THE WEEK IS COOLER SO I DECIDED TO SET UP CAMP IN LA CROSSE NEXT TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE ELECTRIC AND TV. I ALWAYS LOOK FORWARD TO YELLOW RIVER, BUT DAM IT GETS COLD DOWN IN THAT HOLLOW BY LITTLE PAINT CREEK.
THE TRAVEL DAY WAS WINDY, IT MADE SLOW GOING. MARY PEELED OFF AT FENNIMORE TO SPEND THE NIGHT WITH HER MOM IN MT. HOPE. SHE WILL BE BACK HERE IN LA CROSSE TOMORROW AFTERNOON.
Sunday, September 17, 2006
"IT'S GREAT TO BE SWISS", IS WHAT IT SAID ON THE RED MATCHING T-SHIRTS THE BROTHERS WORE ALONG WITH BRIGHT RED SWISS BASEBALL CAPS IN THE CHEESE DAYS PARADE. THEY SIMPLY CARRIED A BANNER THAT READ, "TWO GUYS WITH A BANNER" THEY MARCHED, THEY SMILED, THEY DID THE FAMOUS CROWNED PRINCES WAVE, THEY SPUN CIRCLES WITH THE BANNER, AND THEY ENTERTAINED THE CROWD---AT CHEESE DAYS IN MONROE, IT IS GREAT TO BE SWISS !!!!
WRITTEN BY REX
Friday, September 15, 2006
CHEESEDAYS BEGINS!!! WE HAVE TWO LARGE CAMPSITES AND A CABIN THAT SLEEPS SIX. THIS MORNING MARY AND I DID THE PREP WORK FOR OUR SATURDAY AND SUNDAY MORNING BREAKFASTS. I STARTED BY FIRRING UP THE BIGG gASS GRILL AND FRYING UP 15 POUNDS OF SAUSAGE, THEN DICED UP 5 POUNDS OF HAM. MY MOM ARRIVED FROM GREEN BAY AT 2:30. THE PLAN WAS TO MEET WITH HANS AND NEIL AT 5:00 PM AT PUMPLES TAVERN IN NEW GLARUS.
WRITTEN BY REX
THE TAVERN IS A LANDMARK IN OUR FAMILY HISTORY AS GRANDPA JOHN ROOMED UPSTAIRS THERE AS A FRESH IMMIGRANT (1921 OR 1923) AND STOOD ON THE STREET TO DO DAY LABOR FOR THE AREA SWISS FARMERS. THE SECOND REASON WE ALWAYS DO THIS TAVERN IS BECAUSE THEY HAVE LIMBURGER CHEESE SANDWICHES ON THE MENU. I SKIPPED THE RAW ONION THIS TIME.
IT TOOK THE REST OF THE EVENING TO BAR HOP OUR WAY BACK TO BRODHEAD, AND WE ENJOYED THE FIRST NIGHT VISIT AND DRUNK....................
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Rex and I hooked up at 8:30 this morning for our Wal-Mart shopping trip for Cheese Days. We are happy to be back together and on the way.
So far it hasn't been much of a vacation...my Mother ended up in the hospital Monday. She spent Monday night there and was discharged on Tuesday morning. Until this morning I have been staying with her to see that she was ok and well enough to be alone for the week end. Anyway, the diagnosis was the flu.
We are really excited about our Cheese Days plans and since we have WI-FI at the campground check back for daily updates!!
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
WE GOT SUNSHINE TODAY !!!TODAY WAS A DAY OF ERRANDS, WHEN YOU’RE CAMPING FOREVER YOU HAVE TO TAKE TIME OUT TO DO THE LAUNDRY, SO IT WAS OFF TO MC GREGOR WITH A BASKET FULL OF LAUNDRY. A QUICK RUN THRU THE CAR WASH TO GET THE GRAVEL ROAD MUD OFF FROM THE FRANKVILLE WEEK-END AND WE ARE AS GOOD AS NEW.
WRITTEN BY REX
LATE IN THE AFTERNOON TODD & DI STOPPED FROM PRAIRE DU CHEIN, AND OF COURSE THAT TURNED INTO A BEER RUN TO HARPERS. IT SURE IS GOOD TO SEE OLE FRIENDS.
TOMORROW I HOOK BACK UP WITH MARY AND IT’S CHEESEDAYS BOUND………………………….STAY TUNED.
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Monday, September 11, 2006
A RAINY DAY CAMPING IN IOWA IS STILL BETTER THAN A DAY WORKING.
WRITTEN BY REX
TODAY FINDS THE CAMPER IN THE WAUKON, IOWA CITY PARK COMPLETE WITH WATER AND POWER, THAT MEANS THE TV IS UP AND RUNNING AND THE FURNACE IS JUST A PURR’IN. NEW GOODYEAR TIRES ALL THE WAY AROUND ON THE CAMPER WERE INSTALLED THIS MORNING. TOMORROW MORNING HOPEFULLY WE WILL HAVE BRAKES BACK?
I MADE A RUN DOWN TO YELLOW RIVER THIS AFTERNOON SO THAT THE PEOPLE EXSPECTING US WOULDN’T BE WORRIED ABOUT OUR NON-ARRIVAL. MARK & JAYNE, FROM DES MOINES, ARE CAMPED THERE, AND ARE REGULAR BLOG READERS, THEY HAD EVERYONE UP TO SPEED FROM READING AMY’S BLOG ENTRY ABOUT OUR TIRE DAMAGE AND PROBLEMS.
TOMORROW IS CHARLIE’S 80TH BIRTHDAY AND MARK IS GOING TO ROAST AN 18 POUND TURKEY ON AN OPEN FIRE OVER BURNING HICKORY WOOD, GOT TO SUCK DOWN SOME BEERS AND SEE THAT!!!
IT’S A POTLUCK AFFAIR AND SINCE MARY IS OFF IN LA CROSSE VISITING THOSE PRECIOUS GRAND-DAUGHTERS, I’LL BE SHOWING UP WITH DINNER ROLLS FROM QUILLANS INSTEAD OF SHOWING OFF WITH MY DUTCH OVENS. JUST A NOTE ON BLOGGING, WE HAVEN’T HAD INTERNET SERVICE AVAILABLE EVEYDAY, BUT WE STILL BLOG AND ARE ABLE TO BACK UP THE DATE WHEN WE POST THE ENTRIES, SO KEEP CHECKING AND WE’LL KEEP POSTING WHEN POSSIBLE.
AH…………. FRESH FRIED YELLOW RIVER RAINBOW TROUT FOR SUPPER TONIGHT………………..
Sunday, September 10, 2006
THE 3RD ANNUAL “VIRGIL RUN TO CASTALIA” WAS A BUST., FOR A COUPLE OF REASONS. REASON #1 WAS THE WEATHER, THE SUN NEVER DID SHINE, AND IT WAS WET, COLD, AND DRIZZEL ALL DAY LONG WITH TEMPS. IN THE 60’S. I WAS EVEN IN BLUE JEANS INSTEAD OF SHORTS.
WRITTEN BY REX
REASON #2 WAS THAT THE FRIDAY NIGHT HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL GAME WAS CANCELLED DUE TO THE LIGHTENING WITH THE THUNDERSTORMS, AND PLAYED ON SATURDAY AFTERNOON. SO INSTEAD OF THE RIDE WE GATHERED AT THE CASTALIA LAST CHANCE SALOON TO DRINK BEER ALL AFTERNOON AND TELL STORIES. ATTENDING WERE DANNY BECKER, KENT & DONNA SCHULTZ, BRIAN & LISA SNITKER, JEFF & SHARON FEICKERT, TERESA & DOUG BERG, AND MARY & DARREL CRAWFORD.
ON THE WAY TO SUNDAY MORNING COFFEE AT THE FIRE STATION, BYRON SCHULTZ WAVED ME DOWN AND TOLD ME TO GET MY CAMPER PLUGGED INTO THE POWER POLE WHERE I’M BOONDOCKING. HE DIDN’T HAVE TO TELL ME TWICE, I IMMEDIATELY DID A U-TURN AND GOT THE CAMPER PLUGGED IN. WITH TV AND THE FURNANCE RUNNING, IT’S THE BEST FREE CAMPSITE I’VE EVER HAD. THANKS TO BYRON AND DARLENE !!!
UNFORTUNATELY THE WEATHER TODAY HAS GOTTEN WORSE WITH AN ALL DAY RAIN, AND TEMPS IN THE 50’S. NOT WHAT YOU CALL “GOOD CAMPING WEATHER”. THE PLAN TO WATCH THE PACKER GAME WITH FAITHFUL BEARS FAN, TERESA, FELL THROUGH, SO IT WAS BACK TO DANNY’S NEW CABIN FOR A NICE LONG HOT SHOWER AND THE PACKER GAME. I CAN’T BELIEVE HOW GREAT THE BEARS LOOKED ON BOTH SIDES OF THE BALL AS THEY SHUT OUT THE PACK.
THE PLAN FOR TOMORROW IS TO REPLACE THE MISSION TIRES (MADE IN CHINA) WITH GOODYEAR TIRES, CHECK THE WHEEL BEARINGS, AND HAVE STAINLESS STEEL TIRE VALVES PUT IN.I’LL PROBALLY JUST CAMP OVERNIGHT IN THE WAUKON CITY PARK, AS I HAVE AN APPOINTMENT ON TUESDAY MORNING TO HAVE THE ELECTRIC BRAKES REWIRED.
Saturday, September 9, 2006
WE MADE IT !!!
WRITTEN BY REX
WE ARRIVED IN POSTVILLE, IOWA IN THE LATE AFTERNOON, WITH THUNDERSTORMS CHASING US ALL THE WAY ACROSS NORTHERN IOWA. AT POSTVILLE THE ROAD SPLITS, WITH MARY CONTINUING ON TO MT. HOPE, WISCONSIN TO SPEND SOME TIME WITH HER MOTHER, AND REX GOING ON TO FRANKVILLE, IOWA . OF COURSE THE THUNDERSHOWERS WERE UPON ME ONCE I STOPPED. IN FRANKVILLE I’M BOONDOCKED ACROSS THE ROAD FROM HOTH’S POND.
IN THE EVENING I WENT TO FIND MY OLE BUDDY DANNY BECKER. DANNY HAS BUILT HIMSELF A BEAUTIFUL CABIN IN THE COUNTRY, ON THE FAMILY FARM. THIS WAS MY FIRST TOUR OF THE CABIN AND IT IS AMAZING. THE A FRAME CABIN IS FACING SOUTH WITH AN ALL GLASS EXPOSURE INCLUDING A DECK OFF THE GREAT ROOM AND PATIO OFF THE BASEMENT. THE MASTER BEDROOM IS IN AN OPEN LOFT ON THE TOP FLOOR. THERE ARE THREE BEDROOMS AND THREE BATHS. THE OPEN GREAT ROOM WITH KITCHEN, LIVING, DINEING, AND OPEN STAIRCASE TO THE LOFT ARE ROOMY AND VERY IMPRESSIVE.
THIS MORNING I’M UP TO A WET DRIZZEL, AND FOGGY IOWA MORNING, SURE HOPE IT CLEARS BY 2:00 PM FOR THE THIRD ANNUAL “VIRGIL RUN TO CASTALIA”.
Friday, September 8, 2006
It is now noon and we are fifty miles West of Des Moines, IA . Gotta love Iowa for their considerate installation of WI-FI at their rest stops!! Because of that we are able to post this blog today.
We pulled out of Rawlins, WY at 8 AM yesterday and landed in Kearney NE at 5:30 PM. It was a long 463 mile day. We pulled off I80 Exit 272 to go to an RV Park only to learn it had gone out of business….so we ended up “boon docking” at The Great Platte River Road Archway Monument. There is a LOT of flies at The Great Platte River Road Archway Monument and most of them seemed to find their way into the camper….we are not used to flies since there isn’t any at Lake Tahoe, but I did manage to find my flyswatter. I should be thankful that the only thing I have to complain about is flies considering the tire blow out we had the day before. That was bad but could have been much worse!!
While traveling across Wyoming we had our usual butte, mesa, or plateau discussion. We can never decide which the formations we see from the road are called. You will soon understand our confusion.
Definitions per my dictionary:Butte: an isolated hill or mountain with steep or precipitous sides usually having a smaller summit area than a mesa.Mesa: an isolated relatively flat-topped natural elevation usually more extensive than a butte and less extensive than a plateau.Plateau: a usually extensive land area having a relatively level surface raised sharply above adjacent land on at least one side.So we decided to settle this question once and for all…at least for us. When we are in Wyoming and see these formations, they are buttes….because Wyoming is a big cowboy state and we feel butte sounds more cowboy-ish.Mesas are in Arizona because it is a more Southwestern sounding word. Plateaus are everyplace else…..especially Texas because everything is bigger in Texas!
Today’s goal is to make it home which may be iffy because it is 575 miles and that is a lot for us in one day.
Thursday, September 7, 2006
A BIG "THANKS" TO AIM FOR SAVING THE DAY YESTERDAY AND FOR MAKING A BLOG ENTRY. WHEN YOU BLOW A TIRE ON A CAMPER THE FLYING TREAD DOES ALL THE DAMAGE TO THE THE TRAILER. IN OUR CASE IT TOOK THE FENDER SKIRTING AND THE TRAILER BRAKES OUT. IT'S STILL DRIVABLE, BUT WITHOUT BRAKES, AND WE'VE DECIDED TO GET IT FIXED AT HOME IN WAUKON.
WRITTEN BY REX
WE LOST 150 MILES ON OUR SCHEDULE WHILE WE SAT ON THE SIDE OF THE ROAD DOING TIRE REPAIRS. SO TODAY THE PLAN IS TO LEAVE RAWLINS, WY AND DRIVE UNTIL DARK, PUTTING US SOMEWHERE IN NEBRASKA. IF WE CAMP WITH WI-FI TONIGHT I'LL HAVE MARY POST, OTHERWISE IT WILL BE WHEN WE GET TO AN IOWA REST STOP.
Wednesday, September 6, 2006
As some of you may know my dad, Rex, was an Eagle Scout. Well as the Boy Scout motto says to always be prepared my dad is good at that as well as thinking on his toes. In his wonderful list making and planning ahead he gave me the password to his Blog so I could keep it updated for him while he is traveling cross country. He was hoping to rely on Wi-Fi connections to update the blog himself, but gave me all the info I would need "just in case" because there are some things you just can't plan.
Well I received a phone call from my dad this afternoon which doesn't happen all that often because we usually Instant Message. Anyway I had already checked in with Mary this morning so my heart sped up a bit as I asked if he was ok. The answer no had me barely breathing. He asked if I was home and if I could help him out. I was and he proceeded to tell me that he blew a tire and the rubber had wrapped around the axle on the camper making it impossible for him to change himself. The minute I heard tire blew I could have assumed that because my dad's top 2 tools are a check book and a credit card :P
He told me he was 22 miles East of Rock Springs, WY on I-80 Eastbound near mile marker 126. I said no problem give me a minute and I will call you back. I jumed online and went to www.yellowbook.com and typed in Rock Springs, WY and Tire Repair. There were 7 pages of mechanics and NONE were national chains that I recognized so I went with my vibes and called Chester Automotive and Tire Repair. If Chester couldn't help no one could. I told the man that answered the phone my name and asked if he could help me or direct me to someone who could. Then I explained the sticky situation my dad was in and he said immediately that I needed to call Tire Den and gave me the phone number from memory. I thanked him and called the Tire Den where I spoke with Scott and explained the Chesters directed me to them then repeated the situation. He said no problem let me transfer you to Dusty, he schedules all our service calls. So I explained it all to Dusty who was very helpful and accomodating. He would be happy to drive out there with a brand new tire for my dad and even put it on for him. What size is the tire?? Well then I told him I was calling from FLORIDA and he needed to call my dad's cell to get that info. I also asked him to please have my dad call me when they had everything set up. I called my dad 30min later (I'm just so incredibly patient) and he said that Dusty was on the way to save the day!!!
Well $275 later they have arrived safe to camp for the night and continue on their way to Wonderful Wisconsin. I guess my dad needs to add cell phone and internet to his sparse set of tools. I am my father's daughter, maybe someday I will earn Eaglette for my resourcefulness!!!
Tuesday, September 5, 2006
THE JOURNEY TO WISCONSIN BEGINS. LEAVING CALIFORNIA AND THE BEAUTY OF LAKE TAHOE IS EASIER IN THE CHILLY MOUNTAIN AIR. SUMMER AT 6200 FEET IS ONLY REALLY TWO MONTHS, JULY AND AUGUST. THE DECENT FROM SPOONER PASS WAS MADE IN THIRD GEAR AND LOTS OF BRAKE STOMPING TO KEEP THE RIG AT 40 MPH OR LESS.
WRITTEN BY REX
CROSSING NEVADA IS 450 MILES AND VERY SCENIC. YOU HAVE THE RUBY MOUNTAINS AT ELKO, AND ONCE WE GOT TO ELKO WE RETOLD EACH OTHER THE STORIES FROM THE SUMMER OF 2000 WHEN WE BROUGHT PAULIE TO NEVADA AND SPENT THE SUMMER WORKING WENDOVER. THE CASINO MANAGER WAS ORIGINALLY FROM SHEBOYGAN AND GAVE THE THREE OF US JOBS WITH THE SAME DAYS OFF ALLOWING US TO TRAVEL THE AREA FROM TWIN FALLS IDAHO TO THE WASATCH (PRONOUNCED WHAT-THE-FUCK)MOUNTAINS OF UTAH. THE STORIES COULD GO ON AND ON, BUT IF YOU EVER GET US BY THE CAMPFIRE BE SURE TO ASK MARY ABOUT RUNNING OUT OF GAS NEAR WELLS,NV, OR ASK REX ABOUT THE SHORT CUT TO THE HEBER CREEPER.
SO HERE WE ARE BOONDOCKING ON THE PARKING LOT OF THE CASINO WE USED TO WORK AT ON THE EDGE OF THE BONNEVILLE SALT FLATS.
Monday, September 4, 2006
WHEN WE TRAVEL WE PREFER TO DO 350 MILES A DAY, STOPPING OFTEN FOR BREAKS. AFTER ALL WE'RE CASINO DEALERS USED TO WORKING AN HOUR AND THEN GETTING A TWENTY MINUTE BREAK! SO WE GENERALLY THINK OF DRIVING ACROSS ONE STATE A DAY. THIS WORKS WELL EXCEPT FOR TEXAS, WE'VE FOUND THAT WHEN YOU GET TO THE TEXAS STATE LINE YOU ARE HALF WAY TO WHEREVER YOU ARE GOING..............
WRITTEN BY REX
SO THE PLAN HOME IS, NEVADA DAY #1, WYOMING, DAY #2, NEBRASKA DAY #3, AND IOWA DAY #4. THIS WOULD GET US HOME BY SATURDAY SEPT. 9TH.............,BUT THERE IS ALWAYS THE WEATHER. WE GET DOWN TO 45-50 MILES AN HOUR IF THE WIND IS 25 MILES AN HOUR, TENDS TO BLOW THE CAMPER ACROSS THREE LANES OF TRAFFIC AND THAT'S NOT GOOD AS I-80 IS ONLY TWO LANES EASTBOUND, SO WE HAVE TO STOP AND WAIT OUT THE WIND.
THE FUEL TANK ON THE TRUCK IS ONLY 33 GALLONS, SO THAT ACCOUNTS FOR A LOT OF STOPS ON THE ROAD TO REFUEL. WE ALSO LIKE TO STOP AT THE REST STOPS ALONG THE INTERSTATE TO WALK AROUND A LITTLE AND USE THE RESTROOMS, AND MAKE A SANDWICH FOR LUNCH. TRAVEL AT NIGHT IS SOMETHING WE'D RATHER AVOID.