Friday, September 30, 2011

September 29, 2011: Norwalk to Orrville, Ohio (63 miles):

We are being hosted tonight by Cal’s cousin and her husband who live near Orville, Ohio. It has been 10 years since we have seen them, so we are having a great visit. Tonight’s blog may be short in comparison to other nights.

Today was another dreary day. The weather forecast this week for Indiana and Ohio was for rain and more rain, well, it proved to be correct.  At times it seemed like it would rain anytime soon, but it actually did not rain on us today, however it is raining tonight.

Actually today I was really on the look-out for color. I needed something other than dreary!  Here is a photo taken of a house just for the color of the flowers.

Plus I took photos of more roadside flowers – purple fall wild asters.

Wouldn’t it be neat to sit on this dock with a cup of coffee?

Ohio Countryside

Tomorrow we will be touring around this area of Ohio – Amish Country.  This area has the largest Amish settlement in the U.S.  So we will see what photos we will have to share tomorrow. 

Actually we will post this in the morning. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

September 28, 2011: Perrysburg, OH to Norwalk, Ohio (69 miles):

The weather was dreary this morning, but the rain did not begin to fall until mid afternoon.  Cal made good progress this morning even with the breeze from the south east, but this afternoon the rain slowed him down.  This morning he rode on the North Coastal Inland Trail, until he arrived for lunch in the town of Elmore.

Begining the Trail

Out on the Trail

I took a photo of a cute sculpture in a park.

I also drove by this old style Gas Station – I needed directions as the road we were to use was closed due to construction, so I stopped at the Station. It was still in use – The old guy (must have been in his upper 70’s) said “the place was as old as dirt”!! 

This afternoon we did not follow the Google route, as it took him on several main State highways. We created our own route! On the map we saw a Buckeye Trail which was basically going in the direction we wanted to go. The Buckeye Trail is a route using back road that makes a complete circle around Ohio.  It is a trail for biking, cross country skiing, hiking and skate boarding. It was beautiful.         

While Cal was on the Bike Trail he saw fields of tomatoes.  He chatted with a guy who said they are for the Heinz Tomato plant located nearby. 

I saw apple orchards along the route I was taking. 

I drove through the little village of Hessville – Hess is my maiden name. 

This afternoon it did rain, fairly hard for a while, but Cal rode the whole time. Late this afternoon we stopped at an intersection of the Buckeye Trail and a State Hwy located about 7 miles south of Norwalk, Ohio.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

September 27, 2011: Montpelier to Perrysburg, Ohio (60 miles):

All night there was a storm hanging over Indiana, with the eastern edge at the Ohio border. We were 7 miles east of the border.  This morning the rain began moving east, so by the time we left the motel, there was a light rain.  It did not pour, but it did rain off and on all morning.

Cal was planning to ride the Wabash Cannonball Trail, but the trail was in such poor condition that he chose to stay on the ‘back roads’.  The roads were flat and straight, however there was rain and a headwind straight out of the east. It was a demoralizing morning, but at least after lunch the rain stopped.             

It was great having a dry afternoon, even thought it was cloudy most of the time. 
The photos taken this morning will show the dreariness of the day. 

Farmstead in Western Ohio
There was an area where the farmers were growing cabbage – both white and purple.

I also saw a large field of orange pumpkins. I wondered if I would see any roadside stands.  Sure enough I saw several.  So colorful! Plus one stand was also selling beautiful Mum flower plants. 

We are beginning to see more and more trees turning their fall colors.

We are presently in Perrysburg, Ohio.  There is a huge shopping area near the motel.  You know since I did not bring any clothes along (only an empty suitcase!) I need to find something to wear tomorrow!!!!! Isn’t it interesting how we keep seeing things to buy!!! Cal and I both really did need new belts! At this point, I have not bought any antiques on this segment of the trip.

Another storm is to pass over this area tonight.  Hopefully we can have a dry day tomorrow

Monday, September 26, 2011

September 26, 2011: Goshen IN to Montpelier, Ohio:

The forecast for today was not good – rainy! However this morning after breakfast the sun was shining enough so we could see our shadows.  It was the beginning of another beautiful day.  No kidding, there was no rain, the sun was shining and at points Cal had a tailwind. Lovely fall day!  We understand it was a miserable day in Iowa – cold and rainy.

I mentioned ‘quilt murals’ yesterday.  Here is a photo of one in Goshen, Indiana.    

We left Goshen, IN riding/driving east through Amish country until after lunch.  Later in the afternoon very near the Ohio border there was another Amish settlement (very small in comparison to the Goshen area).

It was Monday, wash day!  I have always enjoyed driving through Amish country (in Kalona, Iowa or Lancaster, PA) on wash day to see the laundry on the wash lines. Today was no exception.  By the time we were on the road most wash was already on the line. However I did see a Grandpa outside hanging up laundry.

The usually beautiful veggie gardens are in fall mode – not very pretty, but I did take a few photos of flowers. 

Horses are everywhere – you see more horses in this area than you do in Kentucky horse country. There are work horses of course, but there are lots of other horses.  I chatted with someone regarding this. Their comment was that every Amish family has 5-6 horses trained to hitch to the buggies, of course the work horses, and most likely a horse or two is retired, plus young colts. They may also have a horse or two in training. We did drive by a farm with an oval track for training trotters.  A guy was running a horse with a cart. 

Cal Meeting a Buggy
As we showed you yesterday, there are the phone booths at the end of driveways. They are not allowed phones in their homes, as they fear the women will talk and gossip too much, but they are allowed to have them at the end of the driveway for business calls. Today I saw a double phone booth, plus one built in log cabin style!

Schools were in session today. Some school children came by bicycle while other came by horse and buggy. While the students were in class all you would see the bikes or buggies near the school, with the horses in a nearby pasture or in a shed.  At recess time the kids would be outside – playing volleyball or a game of softball, or there were other games for the younger children.

Amish School with Bicycles

Buggies at an Amish School

Volleyball Game During Recess

Softball Game

Younger Girls during Recess

Pre-School Boy Watching From Mail Box
At one school, when the children were outside playing at noon, across the road there was a little preschool aged boy trying to get a ‘full view’ or ‘impress’ the school kids!  After I took his photo he waved at me.  Cal said when he rode by the little boy seemed very impressed with his bike.  The school kids would wave at Cal.

Most of the farmsteads are lovely.  I hope you do not get bored with all our photos from today.

We saw people at work today.   

Washing the Buggy

Working at a Saw Mill

Picking Pumpkins

On two occasions today we rode/drove on gravel - a total of 5 miles.  Due to the rain yesterday and last night, it was at least not dusty, but it was slightly muddy at a few spots.  So you know we were on the ‘back roads’ of Indiana.   

OHIO! We made it to Ohio, but we were on a ‘back’ road where there was no “Welcome to Ohio’ sign!  We are approximately 7 miles into Ohio. 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

September 25, 2011: Goshen IN: (Rest Day)

We were ready for a rest day, plus the weather was dreary and rainy.  In fact at times it was pouring this morning. Cal was so glad he was not riding today!!  Our hotel is having issues with the internet so after breakfast we went to McDonalds to use their Wi-Fi to send our blog and answer emails. 

Late morning, even thought it was still raining, we began driving on a local ‘Heritage Trail’.  It is a scenic loop through rural landscape and Amish Country.  If you want to shop and eat, Sunday is not the day to do this.  However we saw the homesteads where Amish church was being held today - by the number of buggies setting in the driveways.  We took photos even thought it was raining. 

Also along this Heritage Trail, there are Quilt Gardens.  Numerous locations have planted gardens in quilt designs.  This is a great time of year to view them as flowers are in full bloom.  There are also Quilt Murals on buildings. We took photos even though the weather was not great so you should have an idea of what we saw. 

Quilt Garden

Quilt Garden

Quilt Garden

Amish Homested-Sunday Church with Buggies

Amish Buggies at Homestead

Another Amish Homestead having Church Today

Another Amish Homestead/Church

Telephone Booth at end of Driveway of Amish Homestead

Horses Grazing at an Amish Home 
This afternoon after a nap we met Cal’s grand niece.  Before we went to an early dinner she gave us a quick tour of the Goshen College campus. She had an evening activity at the college she wanted to attend, so we are back at the hotel doing this blog and Cal is watching a ball game.  He is getting settled in to watch his Pittsburgh Steeler’s play!

Tomorrow, weather permitting, we will be on the road again.  Actually Cal will be riding through Amish country and hopefully will take more photos, especially if the sun is shinning