FRIDAY, OCTOBER 13, 2012
TRAVELING THROUGH IOWA!
I thought this was a cool sign we saw at the rest area/welcome center
Bill of course was up before me doing his Bible Study, checking the internet and facebook for news in the world and family/friends. I had encouraged him the night before to have his time, get some coffee down him, pull in the slide and head down the road leaving me in bed. Although it is not a smooth ride I was able to rest a little longer and have some good quiet prayer time myself before he was ready to stop about 100 miles down the road. Not waiting on me to function for the day is a great help to making progress in the miles we need to travel.
After I was up we stopped at the next rest area for breakfast and time to evaluate the map, our route and things to do along the way that would be fun. I found that the Madison County Covered Bridges Festival begins tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday only and we are just about 50 minutes from there. Sound fun?? I thought so and after discussion and internet searching for a camp ground in that area I chose “Pammel Park”. I called them and left a message but set the GPS for the park. The Parks Division called me back and advised that just ½ hour ago there was 1 spot left at the “Pammel Park” but they don’t take reservations this late so “first come, first serve”. So we continue on hoping we get there first. LOL.
First problem: we come upon an accident (saying a prayer as it did not look good) and the road was closed. The officer sent us down a side street to go around the block but that just took us right to the accident. We turned around and drove several miles trying to find a go around – “Naggy” (our GPS), kept “recalculating” and asking us to make u-turns, not an easy thing to do with a motorhome and tow car!
Second problem: We finally find our way back on the road and the next road we are to turn on has a sign “DO NOT ENTER” but the road looks clear. Trying to obey signs we continue on looking for another road to get us on track. No luck --- we traveled another ½ hour trying to get back and finally decided we are just going to take that road even if that sign is there, after all it looks clear. So, decision made, we head down this beautiful scenic road towards the park.
|Me, waiting to see what Bill finds around the corner. Will it be clear??|
Third problem: We see a sign that says 12’6” clearance ahead but it does not say how far down the road. Okay, seriously we are 12’7”!! What should we do? We only have to go 1.7 miles to our destination, maybe this clearance issue is farther down the road than that. After all what campground that takes RVs would have a route with that low of a clearance??? So we continue on, laughing hysterically. We approach an area with a sign showing the park entrance with a curve up ahead. Bill gets out and walks down a little way to see what is ahead and it looks clear, so back in the RV and we take off again. We laughingly declare we are going to persevere until we have to turn back!! We will not be stopped!
|We still thought we might be there before the tunnel came into play!|
Next sign: Tunnel ahead, 12’6” clearance. Still does not tell us how far. I’m asking Bill, “Isn’t there something we can take off the roof to give us an inch or more?” He replies, “Well we could let all the air out of the tires that would give us a good inch but I don’t think it’s a good idea!” Once again, he gets out and takes a little walk to assess the situation. As he is heading back to the RV, a truck stops and the guy says, “I wouldn’t try it if I were you. I have seen too many people get stuck in that tunnel!”
Fourth Problem: Okay, we may be a little stubborn and persistent but that finally convinced us we would turn back. Well you cannot back up, especially on a narrow uphill road with a 33’ RV and a tow car attached. So Poor Bill, still smiling, laughing, saying, “Are we having fun yet?” had to unhook the car from the RV and back both of them up the hill into a very small turn around just to reattach the tow car. After an hour or more we were ready to begin a new journey looking for another camp ground that maybe we could get into???? Maybe we are not supposed to stop at Madison County? I’m still not convinced of that so we will persevere!!
|Picture of the Pammel Park entrance -- I think it would have been a pretty campground?!|
|Took this picture of purple berries & red leaves while Bill was working on getting us turned around!|
Over an hour later we found (with a lot of confusion I won’t bore you with) another campground, Criss Cove. Nothing to write home about but it does have a nice pond view, the colors are beautiful (although not as vibrant as in Michigan) and we have electricity for the night. I think my poor overworked husband deserves a nap and a gold star.
Weather forecast for tomorrow, high of 72. Sounds great doesn’t it? Well, that was before I saw the 80% chance of rain. I will let you know whether all of the shenanigans of getting here was worth the stop at the Madison County Covered Bridges Festival.
P.S. from Bill: The LOLs above do not stand for Lots Of Love as several (older) people guessed two years ago when reading Sheila’s writings. It means Laugh Out Loud. Sorry for the confusion. LOL.