Sunday, 25 July 2010

A Post With A Difference

Today’s post is slightly different than usual as Bobscoot offered to write it for me, so I sent him the pictures from today and I have included below what he wrote on my behalf. Of course, Bob didn’t have any idea about the story behind the pictures, so he has made everything up using his judgement and creativity. After Bobs piece, I have included the same pictures with my words. I have to say that Bod has done a remarkable job, having obviously done some research about what he saw in my pictures. If you read Bobs words and then mine, you will see they are really not that different.

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So from the keyboard of Bobscoot....

Day 32

I woke up refreshed from the Holiday Inn and it was a good feeling to have clean clothes on for a change using the hotel’s laundry service. Yesterday I was very hot it was a luxury to have a place with air conditioning. Luckily my room had an adjustable thermostat so I cranked it down a few degrees and relished in the cool air while I was sorting out my pictures for the blog. I am getting used to the new blogger software now and it is not as cumbersome as I had believed.

As I left Fort Wayne I noticed a statue in the main square of people dancing....


























In the background there was a faint sound of music. Cool. They have a sound system which plays dance music to get you into the mood. I don’t notice any dance halls in the area and I wonder what significance this means. Maybe this was the site of something famous which only the locals know.

Farther down the street there is this man wearing a patriotic swim suit....


























The leading ladies has become very filthy and I thought it would be a good idea to get my bike washed. I am very fussy with my custom paint job so I inquired what kind of towels he would use as to not scratch my paint. Fearing that he would scratch my paint, we struck a deal where I would use his supplies to wash the bike myself. It felt good to be rolling down the road with a clean bike again. Clean bike and clean clothes, what more could a person ask for.
I didn’t know what to expect when I crossed into Indiana but I see fields of wheat and grain silos....




















This must be a prosperous farm as they have their own crop duster. I can only imagine the freedom of flying to be similar to riding my Harley....




















The roads are unchallenging and are straight as an arrow. Miles and miles of straight roads lulls me into a hypnotic trans . Did I mention that it is very hot. I am looking for somewhere to stop with shade so I can open up another bottle of water and snack on a granola bar.
Finally I spot some water ahead....




















It appears to be a man made lake. Cool. We don’t have any of these in the UK. In America it seems that money is no object if you desire to have a waterfront cottage

Then you can have your own beach and a place to dock your boat or jet ski....




















It isn’t long before I come across the Kruse Military History Museum . There are live displays and people wearing period costumes....



























I think of what it must have been like a hundred years ago going into combat with muskets and hand to hand combat.

This bloke is so realistic looking. It`s as if he is really living the part, right down to his unshaven beard. I was tempted to give it a tug to see if it was real, or not, but didn`t....



I`m not sure I would really want a job playing in the past, especially in the heat of Indiana but it looks like they have fun showing the tourists how it was like


















I turned around when they fired their guns. The sound they make is deafening. These are the old muskets that you fill with gunpowder and push a rod down with the bullets. I wonder how fast you can reload when your enemy is charging towards you....


















This is a neat place and if you are in the Fort Wayne area, you should stop here. They have displays from every era. I managed to have a few words with these servicemen who were actually visiting the museum too. They were a friendly bunch....


















I think he said his name was Al and I asked if they would mind posing for a group photo....



























And here it is. The two guys in the back were actually wearing old German uniforms. It was great talking to them.....



















There seems to be a lot going on. Next was the medieval display....


















And then we were given a short demonstration of the type of fighting during the time of King Arthur, with lances and shields....

















In addition to military displays, this is also an Automotive museum and parked on the side of the building there was an actual Nascar on display. Of course it is retired now but it is complete exactly as it was raced many years ago.

I asked one of the servicemen if it would be alright to pose on the fender while he snapped my photo....


















It`s not often I can get a photo of myself on this tour as I did not have room to bring my tripod. Especially while wearing my favourite Ace Café T-shirt, which was finally washed. I expect that even in this sweltering heat I will be able to wear it another two times


I don’t know why I snapped a photo of this bus but it was neat looking. We don’t have any of this type in the UK. All of ours are Red and have two levels (double deckers)

I was just thinking that perhaps on my next cross country tour I should just purchase a bus of this type and have all of my friends come along with me....


















Soon it was time to leave.

Luckily I don’t have far to travel today as Auburn is just up the road along SR426 which parallels hwy 69 . There is not much traffic along this section as is my preference to take slower routes, but really, this is so boring. They should have put a few turns in here....



























I caught another glimpse of a small lake along the way but there was no place to pull over and stop. I continued on my way and found a small B&B in Auburn to spend the night . Not many miles today, perhaps only 30 miles but its not easy in this heat but a big day tomorrow as I head to South Bend....



















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Now, here are my words....



Today was an interesting day.

There was a huge thunderstorm last night and I copied a couple of other bikers and moved my bike, the Leading Ladies, to under the entrance canopy of the hotel, just before the heavens opened. The benefit was a dry bike this morning.

Not long after leaving this morning, I stooped in Auburn for something to drink and I walked around a little. The town has a number of statues of everyday people dotted around the streets, They are by an artist called Seward Johnson. This excellent public art at its best, Sadly I didn’t take my camera with me, but I did find  another blog that features some of the statues

I did retrieve my camera and take a picture of the largest statue, which is 25 foot (7.5m) high....


























I saw this guy promoting a car wash. I just had time to grab the camera and take one photo as I rode by him. Quite why he was doing this, I will never know, but it did make me laugh....


























I was told today that there is not much in Indiana except corn. I am sure that is unfair, but there really is a huge amount of corn. Mile after mile of the stuff. Here they are on both sides of the road I was on....




















I guess you have made in big in the area of corn growing when you have your own crop sprayer plane, or even two crop sprayers!....




















I passed this house, the owners of which have, like a few in the area, dug themselves a pond to swim in to keep cool during the summer months....,




















Ok, I hear you say – nothing special about that. But look again! Whoever dug this pond made it big enough for.... A JET SKI !!! How cool would that be!! Wow, to use a jet ski in your own pond!!




















As I was leaving Auburn, I saw a sign for a car museum and I decided to go take a look. It didn’t go as I thought it might because rather than go see the cars, I stayed in the museums grounds where there was a military history festival taking place. Essentially this consisted of a number of different groups dressed up in past military uniforms and they gave demonstrations of the weapons of the time and these people were very enthusiastic. Now, I have never really understood why people do this, but I have to admit it was fun to see. I did feel sorry for them as they looked very hot in their thick uniforms.

This guy told me he was dressed as an early German solider, but I may have mis-understood him. I am hoping that Sonja or Bleiglass will be able to confirm if this looks right....


























There were a few guys dressed from the American Civil War period





































A few US WW2 soldiers....










































German soldiers from WW2.... I described these guys as being “dressed up” just now, but to be fair to all of the groups, they tried to speak the language of the people they were portraying and even had names befitting the nationality. There were a couple of Franz and a Hans included in this group....



















A few Vikings. I had no idea that the Vikings made it to the USA. Did they really travel all that way in their fighting boats?....


































I did at least walk up to the entrance to the car museum, if only to look at this NASCAR (at least I think that is what it is). Somebody kindly offered to take my picture....


















This bus intrigued me for a while and I was fooled by the design of its paint scheme. I recognised the crest and it all looked very Presidential, but I soon realised it wasn’t. It was actually a promotion bus for a radio station that broadcasts from Kendallville and it was there to support the historical festival. It was a guy that stepped out of the bus that took the picture of me on the car and I asked him to explain what the bus and radio station was about. He started by saying they were a country within a country and I lost him at that point....


















I looked on the map of Indiana and noticed some very long straight roads, so I went and had a look. We don’t get roads like this in the UK (this one was about as long as the UK) so for me it was quite a sight....


























Finally I went into Potato Creek State Park., which was very beautiful, but I didn’t see any potatoes....


















Now, don’t you think Bob did a great job? The only real thing wrong was there was no way I would let that guy wash my bike - that would just be too wierd!  I think Bob such a good job, I might just employ him as my ghost writer!

I also made a short video today of the area around Middlebury in Indiana, which I knew was populated by Amish people. I had to go take a look.  I have made the video, but run out of time to upload it today. I will do it later!

8 comments:

Bleiglass said...

Yes, its German
http://www.grosser-generalstab.de/sturm/sturm107.html
:))

In The Wind Adventures of William and Mary Ann said...

I've been enjoying your posts Gary.
Looks like you're having fun!
- Mary Ann :-)

bluekat said...

You're very trusting to let Bobskoot write for you, but yes he did a very nice job. I liked your version too. Sounds like a great trip. A friend of mine is into water skiing and knows people who have dug long, narrow lakes for water skiing practice - usually on farm acreage, since they have the space.

I think Mr. carwash man must have drawn the short straw that day. :)

Nice right up on your trip!

FLHX_Dave said...

Wow...I'm sorta speechless. Your tour so far is enlightening me. I realize how truly diversed my Country is; Yea, we do take things right next door for granted now don't we?

All awesome picts!...well, except for "Capt. America" in that speedo, yeah, we coulda' done without that one. heh'

What a story to tell...what a story to tell.

Eve said...

Well, I think Bob did a grand job!!! And the part I liked best was where he said you were going to hire that bus the next time you tour the USA and take us all with you!!! Yeah BOB!!!
I'm with you on the no one washes my car or bike policy Gary! And the jet ski in the pond...that didn't seem strange to me! hahaha! You should go back to central NY in the winter and see them race snowmobiles across open water...now that is a hoot!
Hope the roads get less straight! Ride Safe!

Arizona Harley Dude said...

Skoot's a hoot and his writing isn't bad either. What a journey you're on.

SonjaM said...

I can't get over the carwash dude in his speedo. Yikes. Bob did a great job anticipating your story. Maybe you should make him your ghost writer so you would be able to spend more time on the road ;-)

Gary France said...

Bleiglass – Thanks, I wasn’t sure. They are very smart uniforms for that time.

May Ann – I am pleased that you are enjoying them and yes, I am having a great time!

bluekat – I thought he might have written it a little more tongue-in-cheek as he can be a bit of a joker sometimes! But, to his credit, he did a really good job. Long narrow lakes for water skiing – wow! That would be quite something to have in your backyard. I am not sure about Mr Carwash – he did have a big smile on his face!

Dave – I am sure you are right. There in things in my own tiny country that I haven’t seen and it is so easy not to go see them. Given the chance though and the time to do it, you can find all sorts of amazing things and people out there. I am enjoying telling the story!

Eve – That would need to be a big bus, but it would be fun! I had my bike serviced in Chicago yesterday and they washed it – to be honest I didn’t mind as it was so dirty, but I do like doing it myself. Snowmobiles on open water seems a little mad to me.

AHD – Yep, quite a journey. I had expected to see some of Bobs wit in there, but he kept it very straight.

Sonja – Now there is a plan.