Wow, it’s been a month. I knew I was behind, but not that far. And in my last post I forgot that someone had a birthday. Yep, I am the mother of a 21-year old. Which puts me squarely into middle age I suppose. But a big Happy Birthday to Legs, who is a pretty amazing kid.
We managed to make it on vacation. My new blue ride was a fantastic road tripper as we made our way through and around Indiana. It was a more low key trip than some, as we visited some of my late husband’s family and my best ever childhood friend from the first day of first grade on. And we saw some cool stuff along the way, and even did a bit of horseback riding. My arthritis did not seem to mind that–it did mind, a lot, the 90+ degree temps and the incredible humidity that made me feel like melting into a puddle.
This first set came from Brown County, which has one of the nicest state parks I’ve seen in awhile. It’s huge, and very well managed. We did a 35-minute trail ride and then some hiking. I believe our hiking would up being 2 miles for the day, which is not a lot for most, but when you are over 40, out-of-shape, and have arthritis, it’s a darn good effort. We then went into Nashville for some pizza and relaxing (in the ac). Nashville is the closest town to the park, and is touristy but quite nice all the same. It was originally an artists’ colony, and there are a number of talented artists mixed in with the “Made in China” shops. Also a fantastic coffee shop which serves a massive mug of mocha and an apparently local item called a “creamed Coke.” Legs thinks watermelon creamed Coke is very tasty. (It’s the Boy Scouts; their backpacking trips taught him some weird food habits.)
The cocoa tree and the oak tree were seen at the Ft. Wayne Botanical Gardens, which we toured with my son’s great-aunt and uncle. It was quite hot there, especially in the Tropical Rainforest building. (Note: An excellent day to wear linen pants and a cotton/silk shirt, as all travel wrinkles were steamed out within 15 minutes in this room). A lovely couple, and he made some awesome burgers the night we rolled into town. And there’s me and my buddy-talked all evening and the next morning. They live near Lake Michigan, so they took us over to watch the sunset (in the not quite as horrible heat). What a beautiful sky God gave us that night. The skyline to the left of the setting sun is Chicago! It was rather odd to see such a massive city look so tiny.
For the final batch, we have the sights of Indianapolis. I haven’t finished editing these, but I like them just the same. We toured the Indianapolis Speedway, aka the Brickyard, and home of the Indianapolis 500. The tour included the famous yard of bricks, all that is left of the original paving. (I’m all for preserving history, but I just cringe at the thought of a car hitting that strip at speeds upwards of 200 mph. Even ground down, that’s a heckuva surface change and must feel like the world’s worst rumble strip.) And it’s hot on the racetrack, very hot. We also went to the Indiana State History Museum, which is thankfully indoors and completely air-conditioned. Also it is very well laid out and has a ton of interesting exhibits, which I apparently took no pictures of. The rest are from the Indianapolis Zoo, where we met some of Legs’ cousins and slowly melted in the heat. Dippin’ Dots are awesome, let me tell ya. The skyline was taken from the Canal Walk, which runs behind the zoo and would have been a lovely evening walk or bike ride, if I wasn’t already halfway to puddle status.
Oh, and if you are ever on the northwest edge of Indianapolis near Brownsburg, look of So Italian. It’s a very tasty, locally-owned pizzeria which has a booming business.
We are back home now and I was thoroughly rested. Unfortunately, one of my aunts passed away right after we returned, and we did a one day, 8-hour plus road trip for the funeral. It’s sad knowing another piece of my childhood was gone, and Legs was a little appalled at finding out he has even more cousins, but it was a good trip and he helped drive back. For the record, I had 27 first cousins (counting both sides) when all were living. (And yes, it was still hot and there are about 2,000 fewer bugs in WV since they were plastered all over the blue bomber’s windshield.)
On the plus side, I’ve continued progress on the Keyes Shawl from Interweave. I was officially halfway done when I took this picture. Legs was driving–I do refrain from crochet when I’m behind the wheel.
And Legs finished his Mando boots, and I’m off to do some tidying, so perhaps we can get this summer and blog back on track sometime soon. Stay cool!