Sunday, June 5, 2016

June 1, 2016
Dawson Creek, British Columbia
Mile 0 Alaskan Highway
June 2, 2016
Ft. Nelson, British Columbia
June 3, 2016
Watson Lake, Yukon Territory

June 4, 2016
Whitehorse, Yukon Territory
(I still haven't found Sgt. Preston)
Hey there, it's me again.
     When Richard and I first came to Alaska in 1997, the roads were mostly gravel, with construction around every corner.  Dust filled the air when an inconsiderate driver would speed by us, not even bothering to slow down, and add more grease and grime to the vehicles trying to avoid them.  The last time (2013) the roads were wonderful. 
     This time it is 1997 all over again.  I hate to see the bus so dirty that you can't even see the color.  Not so much for me, but Richard's OCD kicks in and darn if he isn't a little testy to live with.  Don't forget we are in a moving vehicle (40'X8') with no where to run and no where to hide.  And, yes, for those who don't know Richard (my husband of over 42 years) he does suffer from OCD, or as I call it SCS (Sheldon Cooper Syndrome). 
     Two things people ask me about our bus is "Do you help wash it?" and "Do you drive it?" Well, no, I don't help wash it.  As for driving the bus, no, I just hold onto the steering wheel and Richard drives from the passenger's seat.  :-)

Along Our Way
     After we left Lincolnton, we made a beeline for Independence, Missouri, to meet up with Jack and Jeannie Dickson, my BFF, extraordinaire.
     Along the way, we stopped at a rest area to have lunch and discovered we were right on the shore of Nickajack Lake.  I’m sure you’ve seen it many times, Lizzy Long, but here’s a picture, just in case.
Nickajack Lake, Tennessee
     We and the Dickson’s arrived at the campground just moments apart.
     Last summer, when Richard and I took three of the grandsons to Key West, I became very interested in our 33rd President of the United States.  Harry S. Truman spent a lot of his time at the Little White house in Key West.  Other presidents had too, but it has been left just like it was when Truman was in office.
     Since Harry S. Truman’s real home is in Independence, I couldn’t wait to tour it and see if I could pick out the difference in the two places.  The Little White House in the Keys was tropical, light greens, palms. Although, some of the furnishings would appeal to a woman, the poker room was definitely masculine. The Truman Home in Independence was done with mostly dark, polished woods and Victorian d├ęcor, which I love.
     The house was built by Bess Wallace Truman's maternal grandfather.  George Porterfield Gates, built the house over a period of years from 1867 to 1885.  After Bess’s father committed suicide, she and her mother and brothers moved in with her grandparents. From the time of their marriage on June 28, 1919, until Harry’s death on December 26, 1972, he and Bess lived in the house.  I was fascinated with the house especially the over-sized piano they had given to their only child Margaret. I think the tour guide said for her eighth birthday.  Margaret was disappointed because she wanted a pony. 
     In the kitchen was a small table placed against the wall, where Harry and Bess sat across from each other to eat breakfast and read one of the many newspapers he would read every day.  On the wallpapered wall, not too far above the table, a lamp, with an on/off chain hanging from it, was mounted.  Right below the lamp, the wallpaper was worn away where Harry would turn the light on to better see his newspapers. I don’t know why that stuck with me so much.  Blame it on the paste.
     We stayed in Independence for about 3 days.  Then we found out there was a heavy metal music fest coming to town over the weekend, expecting 30,000 people.  I used core math I had learned from my grandkids to see how throwing four senior citizens into that mix would affect cantaloupe crops in Guatemala. Using what I could remember of the core math formula, I took a sheet of plain paper and drew all 30,000 boxes, plus three cantaloupe and two stick men and two stick women who looked like members of the ratchet people to explain my calculations.  Within minutes, we packed up and left town, leaving skid marks on the pavement.  Not really sure what happened to the cantaloupes. I’ll leave that for the geniuses who developed the Core system.  LOL
     Before we fled Independence, we visited two other places I’d like to tell you about, but I’m tired and a little punchy, so, I’m going to post this puppy.  Tomorrow night, I’ll tell you about the other two places I really enjoyed.
BTW, do you know what the “S” in Harry S. Truman’s name stood for?
Until later,
Dolores

Friday, June 3, 2016

May 28, 2016
Nanton, Alberta, Canada
 
     WELL, we made it across the Canadian border and didn’t have to be searched.  Yay! Anyone not familiar with the story of Richard and I crossing the Canadian border at Niagara Falls a few years ago, please click on the following link:   http://bit.ly/1U1xw5K
     I think I may finally be able to blog about our journey.  Believe me, I have a lot to write about, but have been having too much fun to blog at the end of the day.  Since we have made this trip four previous times, and I wrote about each day of those trips, it is hard to find new things to write about, but maybe I have made a little head way. 
     This week has been a little sad for me, my sister and my kids.  My dad passed away on the 22nd of May, my niece Crissy, passed away on May 24, 2013 and we buried her on the same date our mother had passed away May 28, a few years before.
     On a happier note, today is Howard’s birthday (Richard’s brother who is 12 years older than him).
     Let me take care of a little business here, and I’ll be good to go.  I’d like to ask that each of you share my posts with the links to my blog.  I have a project in mind, and I’d like to reach as many readers as possible with my blog.  Also, LIKE when possible and, if you don’t mind, leave me comments.  I’d love to know who is following me.  Hopefully, I might be reminded of a snippet or story, which I can use in my blog.
     Having said that, JACK AND JEANNIE DICKSON, we just passed the antique store in Nanton, Alberta where the owner said he loved Earl Scruggs and I told him he had just spent the weekend at my house. Richard printed out a picture of me and Earl in my dining room.  Somehow the man found out I was a published author, so he had me sign the picture.  Before we left he had it framed and hanging behind the cash register.  Richard stopped the bus and went to look in the window of the shop to see if it was still hanging there.  It was closed and he couldn’t see inside.  Oh well, I bet it is still hanging in there somewhere.  J
ALONG OUR WAY

     As I post every day, I’ll be telling you where we are that day, but I’d also like to catch up on some of the people, places and things we have done to this point.
     Every year, Richard and I go to Lincolnton, Georgia for two events we enjoy very much.  We get there a few days before the Little Roy Lewis and Lizzy Long Bluegrass Festival.  Richard does what he can to help get ready for the festival, which starts Thursday.  As usual, we had so much fun seeing old friends and making new ones. 
                 
Old Friends Bill and Shelley Huckaby
     The following week (always Mother’s Day weekend) Jeff and Sheri Easter host a gospel sing at the Lewis Family Home Place.  Richard has helped them build the RV park which is now open for reservations.
Lizzy Long and you can see
 Little Roy to right

The man with the bib overhaul
is one of Little Roy's Brothers,
Talmadge Lewis  from Augusta
On the right in the plaid shirt, is Jeff's Uncle
Russell Easter.  He, along with Jeff's dad, James,
and their other brother Edd formed the long-standing group
The Easter Brothers.

Here's Jeff Easter on the stage
He and Sheri are such a cute couple
     Every year, Peggy Faucett, from Hawkinsville, Georgia, cooks every night of the festival for the entertainers and volunteers at the festival to eat at Jeff and Sheri’s home after the concert.  Peggy is phenomenal.  She lays out a different, several-item buffet for all three nights.  Shortly before the show is over for the night, she and I sneak off and go back to Sheri’s house and get all the food warmed and ready to serve.  
     Other than eating Peggy’s wonderful, culinary delights, I love meeting the entertainers and other interesting people who come to eat.  This year I met the Nelons.  A beautiful mother, her husband, and two daughters with perfect voices.   
Kellie Nelon, Peggy Faucett, Amber and Autumn
at Jeff and Sheri's house.
     While we are on the subject of Peggy, I’m so very proud of her.  She has lost about 127 pounds and, as she says, she’s half the woman she used to be. I have to control myself not to smack her.  LOL 
     This year I met a lady I won’t soon forget.  When Anne Beiler was introduced to me as the lady who founded Aunt Anne’s Soft Pretzels, I told her she was responsible for the size of my right thigh.  She said something along the lines that most people blamed her for their whole body.  I told her no, that my left thigh belonged to Krispy Kreme.
Me and Auntie Anne's Soft Pretzels
Founder Anne Beiler

     Over the next couple of days, I discovered she was an author.  She’d written the story of her life and how, after an unthinkable tragedy, Anne went from an Amish wife and mother, making soft pretzels in the local Amish market to building a business of near 1,000 franchises of Aunt Anne’s Soft Pretzels.  Her book, TWIST OF FAITH, is available at Amazon.com. If you get a chance, read it.  You will never forget it.     One quick added note, while working alongside Anne during her years of building her pretzel business, her husband worked as a counselor providing free services for troubled marriages and teenagers and others.  He later was the first grief counselor to arrive on the scene of the Amish School shooting, which took place five miles from their home.  He has written a book about the event, which is on top of my TBR pile. Jonah Beiler's book, THINK NO EVIL, is also available at Amazon.com.
     Okay, let's hope I'm back in the Internet business.  Don't forget to LIKE, SHARE and leave me a comment.
Until later,
Dolores