Showing posts from June, 2015

21 June 2015 Bozeman and Big Sky, Montana

Not only is today a day to honor our fathers, it it also marks our 8th week of loving our new adventure of land cruising. We were excited but VERY apprehensive about what lay ahead. Now, 2 months later, the baseless fears are gone and each day becomes easier and more fun. There is one thing that we are having difficulty with from 7 years of moving slower than a snail's pace is that we've traveled so far but it hasn't been an ordeal at all. Weather doesn't dictate and we have a car!!! Two great things that removes lots of uncertainties.

     This is a more sedentary lifestyle than cruising which helps explain the many over-weight people that we see. We have to make a very special effort to get out and break a sweat and get our heart rate up. No idea why that's so difficult unless it's because the coach is so much more comfy and more ergonomically friendly than the boat. Temp is always perfect; starting genset is only the flip of a switch; the shower is won…

13-18 June 2015 Deadwood, SD, and Surrounding Areas

We’ve settled in just outside of Deadwood, a historic mining camp built on a rowdy history of gold, gambling and gunpowder. We planned to stay 3 days but each day we beg for “just one more”.  There is so much to do here within a 50mile radius so it’s just a great place to use as our base. 

     Our first stop was Mount Rushmore, rising from the plains as a prelude to the Rockies. This is a must-see for any tourists in the South Dakota Black Hills and is one of our nation’s most significant and enduring patriotic symbols.  Gutzon Borglum, also creator of Stone Mountain’s carvings, sculpted the colossal faces of U.S. presidents, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln, representing the first 150 years of America’s democracy.
     We beat the crowds and soaked in the beauty of this monument that was washed in the early morning light as we reflected on the symbolism of the four presidents and the magnificent engineering feat required to carve from a grani…

13 June 2015 Minneapolis, MN - Badlands, South Dakota

Madison, WI, was a great treat for cyclists and was terrific for us but difficult to leave.  Time to press on to Minneapolis which is the number one among the top 50 most bike friendly cities in our country.  Bill had to celebrate that fact by doing a 60 mile ride on his little 20” wheel Bike Friday.  He loved “setting a record” for himself.  Now he wants to go 70.  If he had a real bicycle, he could probably keep up with the young hot dogs!  On the day he chose to do that, he came upon a GM old car show so that gave him even more delight.  We took a ‘day-apart’ day and I stayed home and did things I wanted to do and never stepped out the door while he was out laying out the miles and seeing old stuff.  
While in that city, we made several futile attempts to locate Minnehaha Falls by bicycle and HAD to see it before leaving so we drove there and discovered a beautiful park.Se Salt is a cute little restaurant within the park that a bike shop employee told us about so that’s where w…

6 June 2015 Mall of America, Minneapolis, MN

What an overwhelmingly impressive experience for us two country bumpkins.  Neither of us are shoppers but we’d heard so much about the Mall of America in Minneapolis that we just had to go there.  If you’ve never been, you should put it on your bucket list.  We were there for hours and, believe it or not, walked out empty-handed.  It just look forever to try to take in all of it.  There are 4 levels housing shops, restaurants, IKEA, furniture stores, bars,  theatres, ice rink, 3 hotels, a water park Bass Pro, a dinner theatre, an aquarium, and a HUGE amusement park——definitely a sensory over load on all levels.  And, if that were not enough, it’s expanding!!!  If Nordsto

m isn’t within your budget, there’s a Dollar Tree, a Sears and JCP.

     The MoA has over 42 million visitors annually, the most of any mall in the world, and employs over 11,000 year-round and 13,000 during peak seasons.  It’s located on the site of the former Metropolitan Stadium, where the Minnesota Vikings and …

26 May - 4 June 2015 Batavia, IL - Geneva, IL - Madison, WI

Long ago when we were new to living aboard our boat (although not new to boating) and had been full-time cruisers for about a month, we met a couple, Linda and Loy, with whom we immediately struck a bond.  They were long-time sailors so besides the Seven Seas, we had other things in common.  For a couple of years in FL, our paths kept crossing when we'd least expect it but since then, they've retired their beautiful boat and are spending their time traveling internationally, so we hadn't seen them in about 6 years.  We wanted to make a visit happen while we were in their neighborhood of Chicago and because they were able to be very flexible, we spent an evening in their lovely home then dinner in a treasure of a restaurant that is one of their favorites.  We didn't get completely "caught up" -- that would take weeks, but we did a great job of hitting the high points. Being able to enjoy their company was a joy.

     Neither of us had ever been to Madison, WI,…

25 -27 May 2015 Shipshawana, IN - Chesterton, IN - Chicago, IL

30 May 2015 Update
     Recently, my worlds of water and land cruising collided!  When it happened, I laughed hysterically and Bill just kinda cut his eyes over at me probably once again, questioning my good sense.  Hopefully this tale will at least elicit a grin from you—-more than I got from my hubby.  Aboard Kindred Spirit, we use our auto pilot while underway making cruising a hands-free venture.  Bill was driving our coach—both hands on the wheel and I asked why he wasn’t using cruise control.  He answered, “I am.”  So then I asked (and as soon as it was out of my mouth, I realized what I’d said and burst out laughing) “So why are your hands on the steering wheel?”  Sometimes I just crack myself up!!
     I’ve satisfied some of my curiosity regarding the interesting habits of the Mennonites and Amish which aren’t the same but similar.  Both are an outgrowth of the Anabaptist movement in Europe from the 16th century.  Anabaptist was the name given to the religious group who don’t…