Monday, July 01, 2019

Travel notes: Day 2

I was initially a little worried about staying in Limon because it looked rather rundown, but then I looked up the crime rate for the area and felt much better about, for instance, leaving our luggage tied to the top of the van (it's just sleeping bags and Rachel's dirty laundry from camp, but still).

"Guess how many crimes were reported in the area last year," I said to Andrew, but he didn't have a guess, so I told him. "Seven!"

"Seven...like, right here around the hotel?"

"No. In all of Limon," I said.

"Oh, we're going to be fine then," he said.

And we were. But it really was a little rundown kind of joint. Still, the kids enjoyed playing on the little rundown playground in the morning.

We struck out for Goodland, Kansas to see the world's largest easel...and also a replica of Van Gogh's Three Sunflowers in a Vase painted by the Canadian artist Cameron Cross (he has done two other gigantic sunflower paintings on easels just as large as the one in Goodland, so I'm not sure how it can claim to be the world's largest...but it does). We had to take a picture to send to Uncle Rod, who also made a version of this painting (which will hang in our home, which I'm excited about because of Uncle Rod's paintings it is one of my favourites).

Eventually I will put some pictures up. This blog feels so empty without them. But anyway...

Saturday ended up being another long day of driving. After stopping in Goodland, we stopped in Oakley for lunch at iHop and then tried to decide if we would make it to Wamego (where the Oz museum is) in time to visit it. We decided we would not be able to make it in time (much to our daughters' disappointment) and instead went to a Buffalo Bill museum. It was to mark the birthplace of the idea of Buffalo Bill. I guess there were two Buffalo Bills who held a contest over the use of the name and Buffalo Bill Cody won by killing more buffalo, right there on the plains of Oakley, than the other Buffalo Bill.

After that we drove for hours upon hours upon hours. Alexander and I fell asleep. Zoë busily coloured and chattered away to herself while listening to her shows with her headphones. Benjamin was so plugged in that we hardly heard a peep from him. Andrew just drove.

We finally stopped for the night in Concordia—yes, Missouri—where we were surprised by the humidity. Kansas was nearly 100 degrees Fahrenheit with a parching wind. When we stepped out of the car in Missouri it felt as if we had stepped into a sauna. It felt delightful (perhaps because we were so cold from being in the car with the AC blasting (cold air helps car sickness at bay in addition to keeping the driver away) but also because we're not sick of the humidity yet). The children were also pleased to see a few fireflies out and about while they were romping around in the lawn in front of the Pizza Hut we stopped at.

*****

Here are few funny things that happened while we were driving, as recorded on Facebook (which is where I happened to take my notes that day (I guess my phone service was better out on the open prairie than it was while driving through the mountains)):

Andrew: I think we’ll stop for a potty break in Salina.
Me: How far is Salina?
Andrew: I think...67 miles?
Me (looking it up): 70. That was good! You were so close.
Andrew: That’s because I’ve been mentally calculating it in my head...because...that’s where one typically engages mentally...anyway...moving on.

Zoë has been obsessing over the difference between a hotel and a motel and we haven't been able to satisfy her quest for knowledge. As we were driving (shortly after lunch), she asked if we were going to a hotel. So I told her we were.

"Excuse me," she chided. "I'm talking to Daddy, so..."

"Oh, my bad," I said, even though she'd given no indication to which parental unit she'd intended to address.

"Are we going to a hotel?" Zoë repeated.

"Yes," Andrew said.

"Don't you mean motel?" Zoë asked.

"Sure," Andrew shrugged.

Then Zoë, returning to her colouring, muttered to herself, "Probably not. He doesn't even know!" and resumed happily humming.

Later Andrew tried explaining that hotels have hallways on the inside and motels open up to the outdoors, which left Zoë incredibly complexed when we showed up to whatever place we stayed at last night and found that the first floor opened up to the outside while the second floor opened up to the inside of the building. Talk about confusing!

*****

We didn't really hear many are-we-there-yet's due in large part, I'm sure, to the fact that Benjamin was in screen-time heaven. Zoë asked variations of this question several times, but not so many that it got to be annoying. And she doesn't understand time at all so her line of questioning was always very interesting.

Zoë: But when will we get to the hotel?
Andrew: In about two hours.
Zoë: Is that in whole time or half time?
Andrew: Ummm...half time?
Zoë: Yippee!!

Later Andrew answered this same series of questions and told her that it was in "whole time," whatever that is, and she was equally excited. We're not really clear what "whole time" and "half time" mean in her mind.

1 comment:

  1. Half time sounds so much better when you are traveling! :) Sophie used to have us show her how many fingers. Doing half or quarter of a finger to demonstrate 15 or 30 minutes was amusing. :)

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