Friday, October 20, 2006

La Porte, Indiana

shipshewana 092-1 We have been spending so much time in the Amish areas that when we moved westward today, I was shocked to find road shoulders full of debris instead of horse shit. “This certainly would not do”, was my immediate reaction until I realized that Amish buggies did not travel these roads and this is probably the normal state of shoulders in most of the US. We got to know the libraries at Syracuse, Middlebury and Shipshewana (where we spent 4 hours of a drizzly cold day) so well, that the librarians in Syracuse invited the kids for a “Sock Hop” and tried to get us to come back for a “Monster Mash”. Those crazy Indiana librarians.

The leaves are changing and changing and changing and I wish I could stop so many places to photo the leaves. The sun has been most uncooperative, however, so the urge was not strong until this morning when it made a spectacular appearance. I can’t remember the last sunny day; I suspect it was sometime in Howe. We spent two nights at the Oakwood Inn in Syracuse while Ameri-Camp worked two very full, long days repairing the slide. I have to say that it works better now than it ever did. They changed the gearing and all kinds of stuff. I’m not sure that there is anything that was NOT replaced, other than the room itself. We boondocked in Shipshe, next to the library, that night and found that the nights are simply too cold and the days too cold and grey to continue boondocking, so we found a terribly depressing “campground” and promptly got stuck in the mud. Old hands at getting stuck, we simply dropped the trailer and headed to the “Sock Hop” at the library and got unstuck this morning on our way out.

We fell deeply and terribly in love with the Bulk Food store in Shipshe (quasi-locals, we call Shipshewana by its nickname “Shipshe”). Amish food in incredible variety and incredibly low prices. We actually went back three days in a row. The roast beast (roast beef to anyone not related to me) was so tender and excellent that we got Mass Quantities to stuff into the freezer. The syrups were devoid of high fructose corn sweetner and I got mass quantities of those also. I’ve never seen such variety and quantity; where else can you find bags of colored mOOnmallows* the size of a toddler? I finally caved and purchased Amish Peanut Butter, and it is as good as it might sound.
We have moved about 100 miles west and are parked near the tollroad. This is our first sight of an interstate since we left Santa Fe, New Mexico. It is loud, it is noisy, but our blood being so thin and all, we need the juice to run the heater so we don’t wake up frozen to the core. We’re actually parked at a motel, stringing an electric cord, as the campground was so muddy we decided not to even try. Tomorrow we head for Costco (we’re almost out of BEANS (the caffeine variety) and oragnic peanut butter and many other things we probably don’t need) and then we might get to Grandma Elinor’s before Christmas.

I still can’t believe we’re heading North when the weather is already more than cold enough, thank you. We should be south. Very very very south. No, more than that. Nope, a bit more; there you go. THAT south!

* edited to please the Moon God and to keep my sanity intact.

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