"It is in the wild places, where the edge of the earth meets the corners of the sky, the human spirit is fed." Art Wolf

Friday, October 9, 2015

Pictures and Stories from Here and There

No posts since arriving back from Ireland but that doesn't mean that I have been sitting in the back room at the computer for the last month.

First there was a get together in Shipshewana, Indiana with a some women from the WomenRV group.  We got to wander around the flea market and buy a few things we didn't know we needed, eat out a couple of times, shared some pot luck dinners, played cards a couple evenings, watch an Apple Fest Parade and listen to bunches of Amish buggies with handsome horses clop, clop, clop down the streets.

And then there was the kayaking trip to a near by lake that Sue found just a couple of miles from our camp ground.  Claudia needed to try out Nan's Advance Element to see if it needed to jump out of Nan's rig and find its way into Claudia's.

One end of the lake was pretty wild and deserted.

The other end of the lake was ringed with houses, docks and pontoon boats that seemed a little over kill for a not very large lake.

Nan paddles away from the launch area in her Hornbeck.

Claudia, who has had to rent kayaks along her travels, finds the Advance Element comfy.

Another pictures that inspires me.  Nan independently loading her Hornbeck on top of her Honda. I never get tired of watching Nan and Liz haul their boats in and out of the water so easily.  Claudia supervised.  

After getting back from Indiana, Audrey and her buddies headed out for a dog show and she picked up two more Grand Champion points.  We then got home and got ready to head out to New York State, to explore some of the Adirondacks, check out some Hornbeck kayaks and visit with my son and Sarah.  Oh, and on the way past Columbus we picked up an English Cocker puppy so he could get his first travel training with the big guys.   To his credit, it made it all the way to New York State and back with a dry crate blanket.

The colors were still muted most places but occasionally popped out.  The weather this summer and fall apparently has set the fall colors back a few weeks.

After exploring some of the winding roads of the park I found Omstedville.  I was going to worry about the winding park roads and then remembered several of my drives through the mountains this summer and told myself that the Adirondacks are the older mountains.  It is interesting that the more miles I drive through some of the less than ideal roadways, the less formidable new roads appear.  

I made it to Hornbeck Boats on a gray chilly, Wednesday afternoon in the rain.  We discussed options and both decided that the possibility of sunshine on Thursday morning would make trying out kayaks in the pond more attractive for both of us.

So I unhooked the car and parked in the field across from the office.

Then I walked some dogs and walked some more dogs.  This is the view of the barn where the kayaks are made.   In the summer they can make use of the outside areas.  One of the workers makes  walking sticks in his spare time and lines them up against the kayak shed on the right.

On Thursday morning about 10:00, we headed over to the pond and tried out several different models and lengths.

The new puppers came back to loo over the models during his walking break.  Stuart had not explained kayaks to him, yet.  There is plenty of time to learn those skills hopefully after he knows a nice "Sit and Stay."

He answers well to pup pup but will get his new real name at the Urbana Dog Show this weekend.

When the dogs and I made it to Ben's driveway Friday we were able to get the rig parked carefully with Ben's help and directions. The space was tight, slightly off level even with some leveling blocks but adequate for a couple of nights.  And the price was right!    On Sat, Sarah came up and the three of us headed off to pick up a handmade redwood canoe Ben had located on Craig's List.   The canoe is beautiful.  The gray haired gentleman in the picture with Ben made the canoe not sure how many years ago.   It was neat but also sad meeting him.  The canoe was being sold by his family because he has had several major health issues that have left him with short term memory losses and the inability to take care of himself.   He told several stories of his canoeing adventures, some of them more than once.....Along one wall of the house the canoe came out of was a cluster of dusty musical instruments that also once were his and now he could no longer play.  All a reminder not to take the present for granted.  I think the canoe found an excellent and deserving new home.

Ben and Sarah and the photo op, next to the lake.  There are lakes and reservoirs all around Patterson which was why the canoe was "needed".  

On Sunday the three of us headed off for a nice "four mile" hike.....ah, not exactly.  lesson learned always bring water and lunch or snacks.   By the time our trail was complete the Fitbit reported over 18,000 steps.  We started at the trail head next to the stone fixer upper.

Next to the field with the drone practicing his maneuvers.

The trail was a beautiful mix up of hills, trees and rocks with several ponds with beavers thrown in for interest.

Once again we try to figure if we have made it to the right  "high point" yet....

Definitely found homes of some of the woodland creatures of fairy.

Stuart would not admit to getting tired, but all of us did. We did catch him sitting down once and he was asleep within minutes of making it back to the car and getting back on the road.   I can now say that I walked a couple of miles on the Appalachia trail.  It was steep and rugged enough in places to expand my appreciation to the walkers of the trail and to know my time to put it down on my "bucket list" has passed.  Good thing that the world if full of other choices.