June 22, 2009

Vacation 09, coming soon...

Details still up in the air, more info soon.

December 16, 2008

Last road trip of the season...

Taking one last trip over the Christmas holiday. Had planned a road trip over Thanksgiving, but decided to stay at home this year instead. Hauling the camper up to St. Louis (no camping there), and from there back down to Memphis, where we WILL be camping for a few days. Expecting highs in the upper 40's, lows around 32...

Taking the larger heater this trip, only had a small box heater last time we camped in 40 degree weather, this time we're taking the larger oil heater I used to use in the garage, hopefully this should keep us toasty even with the low temps we're likely to see.

July 26, 2008

Miscellaneous notes...

Just a few notes about good eats that we had while on the road.

In Marengo, Illinios, outside Chicago, just past Elgin, and off the beaten path, is a great little pizza place called Joe's Place. We had them deliver when we first set up the camper, great pizza, good Italian Beef, and a decent Chicago dog. Dined in the next night, ordered way too much food and had leftovers for the third day. Popular place, but very little else in the vicinity.

On our way to Canada, stopped at Krazy Jim's Blimpy Burger in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Great burgers the old fashioned way, great fries, and wonderful fried mushrooms. Cash only!

In Niagara Falls, Ontario, a great place right there at the falls is Edgewaters, their Roasted Onion & Garlic soup was great, and the dessert platter was fantastic.

In Buffalo, while waiting for the Anchor Bar to open so we could get some wings, we found a great diner called the Lake Effects Diner, old 50's style diner building and everything. Great breakfast, no skimping on the portions.

Passing through Cincinnati on our drive, we stopped in at a local chain called Skyline Chili, a local favorite. Overall, not bad, but I think a tad too much cinnamon in the chili for my taste. Portions were great.

Down in Bowling Green, Kentucky, is a great place called Donitas Country Diner. Sampled several different dishes, all wonderful down home cooking, and possibly some of the best banana cream pie I've had in my life.

Passing through Memphis, as usual, we stopped at Interstate BBQ, some of the best Q in the country. Always good eats.

The last stop of note, which was also our first, is the Czech Stop in West, Texas, home of some of the best kolaches and pastries around. For any frequent traveler up and down Interstate 35, this is a popular stopping point to gas up the car and fill up the belly.

July 18, 2008

More Niagara pics

I've put a number of our Niagara photos online. You can click on the sets on the right to view each grouping, click each photo then click the 'all sizes' button to open a larger image.

July 17, 2008

Homeward bound

Another day of driving, and we're finally home. Temp leaving Little Rock was 90 degrees, the hottest we'd seen almost the whole trip, though of course heading back into Texas saw the temp rise further, hitting at least 100 when I last checked.

Driving this stretch of road is always an adventure, and was a bit more danger filled than usual, the number of trucks on this stretch is far greater than other legs of our journey, and consequently the amount of debris from blown tires and such sometimes presents challenges. There were at least four trucks not too far ahead of us (a mile or less) that had tires come apart on them, we were able to swerve (no easy feat hauling the camper) around them, but north of Waco, Texas we saw a truck two vehicles ahead of us blow a tire, and there was nowhere to go but straight on through.

The vehicle ahead of us had been following the truck a bit too close, and when the tire went the entire outer tread separated and flew onto the highway, clipping the front end of the car as it swerved to another lane. As we slowed, the entire length of the tread lay across our lane, unable to dodge it I drove straight across, hearing it tumble and bump under the car and trailer. A quick exit off the highway revealed no damage, so we continued on.

More construction delayed us just 10 miles from home, all highway lanes being shut down, and traffic diverted onto the frontage road. After sitting for about 20 minutes, wishing I'd hit the rest area 10 miles back, the highway opened up again, leaving us still stuck on the frontage road. A mass exodus of cars from the frontage road proceeded, and despite hauling the camper, I found a level patch and, as is quite common around here, made my own entrance ramp to the highway, and we were back home within minutes, another adventure completed.

July 16, 2008

Little Rock

Left Kentucky, passed through Tennessee, dinner in Memphis at Interstate BBQ, our usual eating place when anywhere near Memphis, and got a few more hours down the road before stopping for the night just past Little Rock, Arkansas. Just a motel room for the night, no camping this time. Though in hindsight, camping may have been better, and AC in the camper worked better than the one in the room, and the camper's bed was larger...

July 14, 2008

Beech Bend Park

Picked up a few supplies at the local Kroger, found a nice place for lunch that had the best coconut cream pie I've ever tasted.

Internet connection here sucks, intermittent signal at the campsite, and even with full bars, getting online is problematic. Campsite is apparently using a satellite internet hookup, sharing such a slow connection with multiple users is a recipe for disaster... Should be checking out here Wednesday, maybe we'll find a better hotspot while we're out later.

Bowling Green, Kentucky

We have crossed international borders, traveled across four states, driven almost 600 miles, and crossed a time zone, and are now at Beech Bend Park, Kentucky, after about 15 hours of driving. Plans for a stop in Cleveland at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame were scrapped because of a lack of RV parking, and we were getting short on time before their rather early closing time of 5:30pm.

Camper was taken down in the rain, still a bit damp inside, hoping the promised few days of sunshine will dry things out.

July 12, 2008

Buffalo Bound

Decided to scrap plans for Toronto, heard from a campsite neighbor that the route to Toronto was undergoing construction, so instead of a 1.5 hour drive it would be closer to 3, each way. A bit much for us only needing to spend about 20 minutes for what we wanted to accomplish, so instead we headed back into the USA to Buffalo, NY to visit the Anchor Bar, birthplace of the Buffalo Hotwing.

The wings were tasty, and there's always something to be said for eating at the original, but I've had tastier. Their Suicide sauce was also not all that spicy, it was hot, but not overpowering. Still, it was tasty.

Came back up to Niagra, and visited the US side a bit more, the view was better than I expected, you could get up close to the top of the falls quite easily and it was totally free, well within our price range.

July 11, 2008

A day of rest

This AM the rains found us again, original plans were to head to Toronto, decided to sleep in after all the walking. Discovered that I had apparently made the camper TOO level this time, rain wasn't rolling off the roof, and instead was accumulating where the air conditioner mounts to the roof. Naturally, we have a small leak there, and were awoken by the sound of dripping water hitting the floor. Moved the portable toilet over to catch the drips, went back to sleep.

On the drive in, we had stopped at a convenience store to pick up beverages, and recycle our used ones... Picked up a few snacks we'd never heard of, including my new favorite candy bar, Big Turk. Sweet, chewy, chocolateny, delicious. Basically, chocolate covered turkish delight. Yum. Picked up a bunch at a local WalMart, later discovered them 30 cents cheaper at a local Dollar shop. Ugh, I could have bought about 40% more for the same money. Bought some more at the Dollar shop anyway, figured WalMart wouldn't let me return the others. Must begin letter writing campaign to market these in the States...

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