|Wednesday, June 16, 2021: Time to hit the road! We had been home for nearly three weeks since our last epic road trip so we were itching to go out again. We decided to take a quick overnight to Lansing, Michigan.
|We passed the Nestle Quick bunny on our way north of Indy.
|We tried so hard not to start an Adopt-a-Highway sign collection, but it's too late now. This is our first attempt to get one of Indiana's signs.
|Near Gas City, we passed a semi decorated with Red Gold tomatoes, a local favorite.
|Gas City has the best road signs: little oil derricks on every corner.
|We were here to collect Garfield statues. These are a set of non-identical statues scattered around Marion, Indiana, and other towns in Grant County. The first one was placed in 2006. Garfield's creator, Jim Davis, is an Indiana native. First up is British Garfield, ...
|... followed by Glass Blower Garfield in front of the Gas City-Mill Township Library (which is a Carnegie Library building).
|We drove to Jonesboro to see Firefighter Garfield, ...
|... then drove to Marion to see Paws for Thought Garfield, ...
|... Dr. Garfield, ...
|... and Fit for Life Garfield.
|There was water running down one side of The Ocho, so we stopped in a Marion parking lot to raise the poptop and check it out. We were still trying to figure out how the roof was leaking and this little stop offered a few more clues, which would be helpful when we brought it in for warranty service the following week.
|We stopped for a quick lunch from Burger King in Fort Wayne.
|Welcome to Pure Michigan! This was The Ocho's 29th state.
|We are intrigued by these Cops & Doughnuts signs, which is the entire point of the marketing campaign. The locations all appear to be in northern Michigan, so no donuts for us on this trip.
|Here are Michigan's Scenic Byway ...
|... and Adopt-A-Highway signs. Right around this time, we received a phone call that we had been moved off of the wait list for a world cruise we had hoped for, so there was a flurry of phone calls and discussions about it.
|After collecting tortoise and terrapin signs, it was nice to find a regular turtle crossing sign.
|We arrived in Lansing, our primary destination for the day. We had two things to see here.
|First up: Michigan's Merci Train boxcar.
|It was a lovely red color and was in good shape. It had been restored in 2005.
|But what's that over there? Maersk!
|Tom spotted a former client's logo on ...
|... this truck, called a Mud Dog. See that mud coming out of the back? When the truck started to move again, a little more slopped out.
|Our next stop was Michigan's state capitol.
|It has a very skinny, very tall dome.
|Having collected what we came to see in Lansing, we drove to the town of Perry to visit King Kone. This adorable building was originally part of the Twistee Treat chain of ice cream cone-shaped stores. We had previously seen one in Niagara Falls, New York.
|The drive-thru line was backed up to the street, so we parked The Ocho and went up to the window to order. How to choose? How?
|Tom went with the green apple FlavorBurst ice cream cone and Debbie chose the Dole Whip flavor of the day: mango. Debbie saved about half of hers in our RV's tiny freezer to enjoy again later on.
|It was 4:30 PM when we arrived at Sugarloaf Lake Campground in Waterloo State Recreation Area.
|We had been lucky enough to snag a campsite right next to the lake. Just one of the perks of being retired and able to travel mid-week. There were a couple of families playing in the water, including a pair of inquisitive girls who stopped by our rig to look at it.
|We had stopped at a CVS along the way and bought a couple of Michigan six-packs which helped us wash down a delicious freeze-dried spaghetti dinner.
|After dinner, the beach was empty and it was quiet around us. There was plenty of space between campsites and we had no one close to us ...
|... except for the guy renting this tiny house who took at least eight trips from his car to bring in everything he would need to stay there.
|Here's the view on the other side of our rig, ...
|... and here's the view from inside after the temperature dropped enough to close the sliding door.
|Some people were out enjoying a sunset cruise on the lake, ...
|... so we decided to head out to the beach to enjoy the lake for a few minutes.
|Here's the shoreline.
|We returned to our beautiful little RV.
|While closing up our shades for the evening, we finally got a good shot of our amazing Vanmade Gear rear shades in used. They fit perfectly and are so easy to use. When not in use, we roll them up and they stay attached magnetically to the bottom of the window.
|Thursday, June 17, 2021: Good morning, Michigan!
|Breakfast was instant oatmeal washed down with ice-cold Diet Cokes.
|Here's a photo of our Vanmade Gear shades rolled down for daytime.
|As we approached I-94, we passed a gas station where at least a half dozen identical Jeeps were lined up, ready to drive together. Identical except for one, that is. It didn't take long for them to get on the highway behind us and start to pass, so we got a picture of the flamboyant one and his plainer buddy up ahead.
|Welcome to Indiana!
|We stopped in Angola to get a picture of Bob the Bison.
|He is one of the Bison-tennial statues placed in Indiana counties for Indiana's bicentennial in 2016.
|Angola has a beautiful vintage theater that is still being used for showing movies.
|Argh. This right here is the reason people misspell our daughter Claire's last name. I before E, people! I before E!
|The Nestle bunny was still smiling as we passed Anderson.
|Since all Top Golfs must be photographed while traveling, we got a photo of the one right next to Tom's old office.
|As always, we got an updated photo of our RV travel map. Total state count for The Ocho: 29.
** THE END **
Copyright © Deborah Schilling/Thomas Bundy