David and I are celebrating our 49th wedding anniversary this weekend. The last couple of days we have been traveling, but today is supposed to be a day of rest. We told each other even though we were home, we would not do any work. Which is why I have already done two loads of clothes and taken care of the chickens. Ha! There is no such thing as no work when I am at home unless I am sick and even then I do things. The rest of the weekend we are going to be on the road again.
Thursday we left on a rainy day to drive to Athens, Ohio. Just for a drive and Ohio University is there so we figured there would be some neat things to see and do there. We drove through rain almost the entire way. The route we chose was rather boring, so we got off it and onto another highway that was much more scenic. But wouldn’t you know, we saw only one antique store and didn’t stop along the way. Now I wish we had, because our whole trip we saw no antique stores that looked the slightest bit interesting. We did stop at a little fabric store. A man was standing in the door with rain pouring out of a gutter right over the door. But I was determined to go in so we sloshed through the rain and under the gutter into the little shop. When we got inside, it looked like a building site with unfinished walls and ladders standing around. “We are remodeling,” the man told us. There were a few quilts on the wall, a room with a quilting machine with a quilt in progress on it and nothing much else. In another room there were about four shelves of fabric. Or partial full shelves. But among all the rather old fabric I found some Pamkitty fabric. Really pretty and the price was right so I bought five yards of it for backing for a quilt. So it wasn’t a total waste. The man was really nice, but I could tell he was out of his element cutting and folding yards of fabric. When he was trying to fold the fabric, he was more or less wadding it up and I just jumped right in there and showed him how to fold the fabric neatly. Having had a quilt shop at one time, I have folded thousands of yards of fabric for people. He seemed kind of relieved I did it. It is his wife’s store and she is an RN and was at work, so he was being put to work for her.
He apologized profusely about the leaking gutter and I hope that’s on his fix it list because it will deter some people less determined than myself to enter his store when it’s raining.
On we drove through pounding rain. Sometimes visibility was almost nil. It made us remember one time when we were in New York and I wanted to go to this quilt shop miles away from where we were staying and we drove through much the same kind of rain storm. And that quilt shop was rather a disappointment when we got there! David has driven through rain, storm, hail, tornado and snow to get me to a quilt shop. That’s part of the reason our marriage has lasted so long. He’s a great husband.
We got to Athens later than we thought we would. We found a little restaurant the lady at the motel where we were staying recommended and we were not disappointed. A few days ago I got a craving for fish and we could not think of a single place in our town that served good fish except Red Lobster and we aren’t enamored of Red Lobster so we didn’t get fish. This restaurant had grilled tilapia on a bed of rice pilaf and it was delicious! Flaky and not fishy tasting and just the best fish I have tasted for a long while. There is a restaurant on the river in Chattanooga, Tennessee that serves the best catfish, but it is only open certain days and we have only managed to hit it at the right day a couple of times while on our travels.
See, it was still raining.
Not wanting to go back to the motel and spend the rest of the evening, we decided to go to a movie and we saw where the new Spider-Man was showing at the local theater. When we got there, the sign outside showing all the movies said that Spider-Man didn’t start until the next day. We chose another movie, but when we went inside we found that they were showing Spider-Man! Yay! So we bought tickets and popcorn and drinks and went inside. The theater was lit hardly at all and I couldn’t see one step in front of the other and we always sit at the very tip-top seats, if we can, and we slowly walked up the steps. I couldn’t even see the seats it was so dark. Finally got seated and the theater slowly filled up until it was filled to capacity. I will tell you, the movie did not disappoint and was very exciting. I will never look at the Washington monument the same ever again and don’t know if I would ever take a ferry to the Statue of Liberty now! Ha. They showed a preview of the new Jumanji movie coming out and it looked hilarious and is on our list of movies to see.
Athens is a pretty little college town with houses built on hills. I love old houses and the town was full of them, but because it was raining so hard the entire time we were there, I got very few pictures. We drove around and looked at the sights. There is an old asylum in town that you can go through, but it was not opened and we didn’t have the time anyway so we didn’t tour it. There are walking trails all over and I would have loved to have walked them, but again, rain.
So early the next morning we got up and went in search of donuts. We hardly ever eat donuts at home, but when we vacation we always look for donuts. I know. They are fattening, full of sugar and down right bad for you, but we still love them once in a while. We were going to go into a Kroger to get some when David spotted a real donut shop. We went inside and they had lots of yummy looking donuts, but I got my usual, Boston crème and David got his usual, jelly filled and with my cup of coffee, we sat down to eat. I was just finishing a bite when this couple sat down beside us. Suddenly the most horrible smell hit my nose. Now David does not have a good sense of smell, but even his nose wrinkled up. I whispered, “Where is that smell coming from?” It was unlike any smell we both had ever smelled. The couple sitting next to us looked perfectly clean and nice, but, the smell was definitely coming from them. I gagged down the bite in my mouth and said, “Let’s leave,” so we gathered the rest of our food and drink and went to the car. “What was that?” I asked. “I don’t know, but it was the worst smell I have ever smelled,” replied David. Take skunk smell and triple its strength and that is what that smell seemed like. I really would have liked to know what that couple came in contact with.
We drove down the highway and found a nice rest stop with picnic tables and finished our donuts. It was more fun that way anyway.
I love to picnic and would eat more of our meals outside if I could.
So on we drove toward home taking a different route again and this route was wonderful.
For a great deal of the way we had the road almost to ourselves. Through little towns where American flags waved on lamp posts. Past old houses built along the Ohio River almost a century or more ago.
I love old houses. I like to think of the people who lived there in long ago days. I hope people will continue to preserve them because most of the houses built today are nothing compared to these old timers. Built solidly to last and they have. I don’t think a lot of the houses being built today will be around in another hundred years.
This town was very interesting and full of history. This tells of some Welsh travelers along the Ohio River whose women folk may have cut the boats loose when they landed because they were travel weary and wanted to settle some place. I like to think that is what really happened and that the menfolk were disgruntled that they lost their boats, but knew they had to stay in one place. Good for those women! They found a great place to settle.
A monument to all the local men who had died in wars around the world.
I’m not much for getting my picture taken, but David wanted a selfie of us, so here we are!
Impatiens planted in planters and hanging baskets all over the town. It was all so pretty.
An old G.C. Murphy store. Haven’t seen one of those in a long time. They were sort of the precursor to Wal-mart.
Barges carrying loads down the Ohio River. David and I both think it would be fun to have a houseboat and travel the rivers of our country.
We drove through more rain but it stopped for a little while and we decided to visit Ulysses Grant’s home and former school. Ulysses Grant was a general for the Union army during the Civil War and became president of the United States several years afterward.
We went inside the house and there was a man standing in another room and I said, “Hello,” and he said he would be with us in a minute. It sounded like he was talking to someone. I looked at the visitor book and according to it, David and I were only the fifth and sixth persons who had visited that day. While we waited, I snapped pictures.
There is a name for this type of picture, but I cannot think what it is. It is cut from paper.
A door that appears to go to the upstairs. It was quite a nice home. Rather extravagant for the day I would say.
Anyway, we waited and waited and the man kept talking and finally we decided to leave. We drove over to the school house site.
We didn’t go in and as we were running late and wanted to get home before dark.
David asked me as we were leaving Grant’s home, “Did you see that sign that said, no pictures?” No, I didn’t. Whoops. You are looking at contraband photos of Grant’s home.
I wonder if Grant was groomed to be a soldier? I haven’t read a lot of history about him, but maybe I will now. Here he is as a fine looking young lad.
And how I remember him from history books. He always looked a little unkempt to me.
So on we drove through Cincinnati where the rain was once again coming down in sheets and I turned on the radio and the announcer was telling how there were high winds, damaging hail and rain going through Cincinnati. Well, of course it was. We were driving through! We have driven through two tornadoes, countless rain storms, snow, sleet and hail. Nothing stops us. But I must say, it was rather harrowing and I know there were times David was driving on a wish and a prayer. But we made it through and got home safely.
Before I go, I will mention the Fourth of July. We gathered with a few friends at our church parking lot where we have front row seats to the fireworks across the street. We are a group who like to play with fire. Someone brought lanterns and the menfolk were lighting them while the womenfolk held them.
Up and away. There were lanterns going up from several parts of the city. I think it ought to be a city wide challenge next year to see how many lanterns we can set adrift. I must say, it was better than the fireworks show for me.
The radio station that provided the music chose the most perfectly awful music to play for the fireworks. Hardly patriotic and some were inappropriate for children to hear. It kind of spoiled the fireworks for me. I am hoping next year, since it is on our church’s grounds, that we play gospel music and real patriotic music for those to hear around us. After all, we are to be a light in the darkness.
So David and I have two more days of celebrating our anniversary. Hoping to get into some antique shops and we are going to places where the show “Good Bones,” is shot to look at some of the houses that have been renovated. Two women formed a company and are taking one house at a time to redo, to revitalize certain parts of Indianapolis and they got their own show on HGTV. It’s become one of our favorites. If I get pictures, I will share them.
Here’s to long marriages, traveling in the rain and the 4th of July. Bye.