Roger's Sailing in a Strange Boat Blog
Skies turning nasty at Cheyenne Bottoms Kansas 5/17/04
Sun almost setting at Cheyenne Bottoms 5/17/04
Storm to the Northwest 5/17/04
Quivira N.W.R. Kansas 5/17/04
Well I just finished listening to Gramma tell me how much her feet hurt. I asked her if she wanted me to make her an appointment to see a podiatrist. She, of course said no.
Today is fixin' to be a warm day. It's already 84 at 10:00 in the morning. Yesterday, it was 98 as a high.
I (as usual) did not do much yesterday. I did go into town & picked up a few more groceries. Spayed a couple of wasp nests. I grilled a nice steak for dinner.
Not really much else going on, so I guess I'll move along to updating my travelogue...
Day 6 Monday, May 17
When I got to my motel room last night, I needed to decide what I was going to do with myself today. My friends would be working. I thought about calling the folks from LabOne to see if they may want to have lunch...I really had nothing planned until Janelle & I were to do something on Tuesday evening. I decided to just take a little adventure...in Kansas.
So I set my alarm for 5:00 (this was at 11:30) & tried to go to sleep.
Well, it was close to 6:30 before I got on the road...about the only thing for sure taht I knew I was doing, was heading West. So I headed South & West, through Emporia & continued west along Highway 50 towards Newton & then Hutchinson. I had not travelled to that part of the state before. I stopped at Sand Hills State Park Northeast of Hutchinson & walked around. It was about 11:00 when I got there, so there did not appear to be much bird activity. I got something to eat in Hutchinson & then headed south towards Kingman & even further south to the Chikaskia River & then South & west towards Medicine Lodge.
It was a pretty warm day, so I really wasn't expecting to see too many birds, just out looking to make my own fun (story of my life). I then followed the Medicine Lodge River to the West. Once it got to be about 4:00 or so, I decided that I should probably start heading back towards civilization (I don't think my cell phone had a signal for about 3 hours).
I decided taht I'd head back up to the North and go to Quivira National Wildlife Refuge & Cheyenne Bottoms, another wildlife area.
I was absolutely astounded by the number of birds at these two locations. I'm certain that I saw over a million shorebirds between the two areas. I had never seen so many
before. They were all over, including very close to the road!
Well, I kept birding until it was too dark to see, then headed South & East, I ended up in Hutchinson Kansas for the evening. I had stopped by a Sonic in Lyons & had had my dinner on the road...(I guess it's better than having it FROM the road).
that's all I have for now,
Be good everybody!
My Dad & Tory (The Graduate)
Me & Tory...do you like my Red hat?
It got to 100 degrees today. It should stay about the same way for about another week.
I went & got my hair cut today. The barber that I go to (Isi) has a shop behind the garage in his house. Got my hair cut short & it feels good! (I'll have to take a picture of me & post it!)
I did some laundry today. I also stopped & picked up a couple things at the grocery store.
Other than that, I holed up like a mole.
I talked to my friend Janelle this evening.
She is good stuff.
that's it for today...
...back to the trip.
Day 5 Sunday, May 16
My Dad & I got up about 6:30 & went out looking for birds. He wanted to stop at McDonalds for breakfast. I passed on breakfast & opted for a Sugar-free Red Bull instead. We went back down to Fremont County Iowa, we did some birding along the Loess Hills & then went to "Forney's Lake" which in some years is indeed a lake...not this year. There was probably some water out there, but I think it's mostly mud.
After birding for 3 or so hours, we went back to our Motel room & got cleaned up before going to the graduation ceremony. From the motel, we went to my sister-in-law, Linda's house. Hung out for an hour or so, then volunteered to go to the church where Tory & 3 other girls were having an open house, after graduation. We then went to the ceremony. It was outside at the football field. After wading through hundreds of people, we made it back to the church. We waited until my neice had made it there before we headed back to Missouri.
The trip back was uneventful. We got back to Sedalia about 9:00 & I was torn because I should spend the night at my Dad's place, but I still had some other friends in KC that I wanted to meet up with. I decided to head back to KC for the night. Of course what I should have done was called them before I left to head back to KC, or I would have spent the night at my Dad's. It was as if I had the plague, 3 different people said they had stuff going on at 9:30 on a Sunday night!! (I think it was a conspiracy). I should have called my friend Shawn, but I was afraid that me showing up on a Sunday night would mean that he'd call in sick to work...I didn't want to be the cause of any problems. I really had nothing going on, so I spent the night at the Super 8 in Overland Park Kansas. Now of course, all that did was put ideas in my mind about what to do on Monday...
Flowers for my Neice, Tory's graduation. The flowers in front with the balloon were sent my by Aunt Gayle.
My Sister-in Law Linda, My neice Robyn & Great-neice Izabella (Robyn's dog Zoe is the black streak in the foreground)
Another hot (98 degree) day here.
I travelled to Laredo to complete some errands this morning/afternoon...
1. Took cans in for recycling (I got $4.36)
2. Went to Target, spent about $20 there.
3. Hassled with T-Mobile (they said that I had not completed 12 months with a $39.95 calling plan so I could get a rebate on a phone...ended up going out to my car & calling their Customer Service # & getting in touch with someone who straightened out my records---they only showed me with them for 8 months...that's just how long I've been down here...I've actually been with them for almost 4 years.)
4. Went grocery shopping at H.E.B.
I also put $20 worth of gas in my car ($1.849/gallon), & Ate lunch at Whataburger.
This evening, I went down to the pond & saw 2 Groove-billed Anis.
That really is about all that's new around here...tomorrow I'll go get my hair cut.
Now to update my trip...
Day 4 Saturday, May 15
My Dad & I left Sedalia about 6:00 AM. Drove through K.C. & stopped in Platte City MO for McDonalds (I'm really not a breakfast person...).
We continued North up I-29 & stopped at Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge. We took a couple of hours & drove through the area. I saw some birds that I had not seen this year (Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Dickcissel, Yell-headed Blackbird).
We then continued up into Southwest Iowa (Fremont County) where we continued to look for birds. We also saw Red-necked Phalaropes, Dunlin, White-rumped Sandpipers, a decent amount of ducks (for mid-May).
We then headed for Glenwood Iowa & checked into our motel.
I had called my oldest neice, Robyn to see what she wanted to do. None of us had lunch yet, so we agreed to meet them at Red Lobster in Council Bluffs.
We arrived at pretty much the same time. We had a nice lunch. Robyn & her husband Josh's baby, Izabella (8 months old) was very well behaved. I'm sorry, I'm not much of a baby fan. I like kids, just when they are older, like 3 & up.
After we left Red Lobster, Josh, Robyn & the baby went to Wal-Mart & my Dad & I left to look around Lake Manawa Iowa. We would then meet up with them at my sister-in-law Linda's house.
We had a nice time visiting there. Went out to dinner at Breadeaux Pizza in Glenwood. After dinner, Dad & I went back to the motel & crashed.
Well I took down a large tree today. It was at the Southwest corner of my garage & some large limbs blew down off it yesterday. It was big enough that I had to saw it up into 3 pieces to carry it away...
I ran some errands into town today. I went to the bank. I had to get a copy of some afadavits from what passes as the Zapata County Courthouse. I then had to go to the Post office to mail them. I also went to the grocery store for water & milk & bananas.
It was really warm today. 98 degrees was the high.
My friend Steve, from SoDak called me today. Reminisced about the good ol' days. Told me something he'd noticed in the movie "Repo Man" that neither one of us had noticed before (a sign in a restaurant window that said "Today's Special: Plate of Shrimp").
Not much else to say. I made a cake this afternoon & frosted it. Gramma said it was good (it's not easy to get her to say something like that).
Tomorrow I will go to Laredo, probably spend a majority of the day there...
and now the update for my triplogue:
Day 3 Friday, May 14
It had been raining on me for about the last 18 hours when I left Pittsburg that morning. I was heading up towards the K.C. area. I called my friend Shawn. His girlfriend, Leann is pregnant & due somewhere around the end of May. She was having some problems & was going to the hospital. (It turned out that even though she was just working half-days, it was stressing her out & causing her blood pressure to rise.)
Anyway, there was nothing that they could do for her, so I met them at their house in Independence. We went out for lunch at The Salty Iguana, it was very nice. Went back to their place & hung out for the rest of the afternoon. I needed to get to my Dad's place in Sedalia Missouri (about 80 miles away). So I left Independence about 7:00 & reached my Dad's at about 8:30. After I got there, we went out to eat (Mexican).
I enjoy sleeping at my Dad's place. The bed in their extra bedroom is WONDERFUL.
(I know my life's not that exciting)
be good everybody.
Big Brutus. 16 strories tall. Picture was from January.
Hello, well this is the last week of school here. I imagine that I won't be doing any more substituting now until August...
Either that or find something else for a job (right).
Still really hot (98 degrees today) & it's going to be hotter.
I mowed the yard this morning (again, took about an hour & 15 minutes).
I took a shower this morning for the first time since returning from my trip (4 days...I was getting a little stinky).
I am going to have to cut down a tree tomorrow, I also need to run a couple of errands in town (hair cut, go to bank, get water, go to the Post office).
Wednesday I will go to Laredo for more errands.
My Gramma must not be feeling very well...she relinquished some of her duties (feeding & watering the birds) to me...
Went down to the pond this evening...nothing of note. A bull came down, he seems like a friendly fellow (Gramma thinks he was put out there to die...)
I am noticing lots of White-striped Longtails
(a member of the skipper family--butterflies) gathering down at the mud at the pond...
I will continue my outdated trvelogue...
Day 2 (May 13 2004)
Got out of San Antonio before 3:00 AM. This allowed me to get through Dallas before their rush hour (just before...) It was just after 7:00 after I started North on U.S. 75 out of Downtown Dallas. I made a small detour to the Post Office for the town of Melissa Texas. (Mailed a post card to my friend Melissa, thought she might enjoy the postmark).
I made pretty good time (drinking Sugar-free Red Bull & Ice Tea). I stopped at an Arby's in Pryor Oklahoma for lunch. I continued North on U.S. 69. I usually hop on the Will Rogers Turnpike...I don't know why I didn't (probably because it looked like the weather was about to turn ugly). It was raining when I stopped at Quik Trip in Vinita Oklahoma, to put gas in my car. By the time I had finished fueling, the rain was coming down so hard & the wind was blowing so hard, I stood on the other side of the gas pump to shield me...
I ran to the store, I picked up a Propel fitness water & a Blue Bell Ice Cream bar & by this time it was raining & hailing quite hard. Water was coming in under the door of the shop. I just sat inside & enjoyed my ice cream as my car was protected under the canopy of the pumps. After about 20 minutes, I headed north out of town towards the Kansas state line. It was raining quite hard (so I could only drive about 45 mph).
I drove past Scammon Kansas, saw signs for "Big Brutus" (See picture), the second largest electric shovel in the world (weighs 11 million pounds). I got to Pittsburg Kansas about 3:00. Gave me a chance to spend some time with my friend Janelle that evening. Finished off the evening with a trip to Sonic where we both grabbed a foot long coney with cheese (Janelle had a 2 for 1 coupon...such a resourceful girl).
I don't eat out much at home, so travelling gives me a chance to find out what I've been missing in the fast food world.
Well, that pretty much sums stuff up for day 2 of my trip...
Be good everybody
Well, I guess I never made it back last night to add more info to the Blog...
Yesterday was again, hot & humid (96 degrees & high 60's dewpoints).
I got out & cut down two trees.
Mostly I tried out this new service for putting pictures on my Blog (Hello from Picasa). It seems to be very easy to use.
I added a picture of the pond outback from about a month ago, as well as a picture I took yesterday.
OK then, I guess I'll start rambling about my trip.
DAY 1 Wednesday, May 12
I left Zapata in the late morning (Gramma wanted to push me out the door even earlier). Drove to Laredo & got my oil changed at Valvoline Rapid Oil Change. Left town immediately after that. Uneventful trip up to San Antonio. Stopped at a Dillards in San Antonio pick up some perfume for my friend Heather, & continued up to my hotel, the Hampton Inn on the North side of S.A. (281 & Loop 1604). Got myself checked in & headed out to Wal-Mart to pick up some stuff (I left home with a cooler, so I added some additional sodas, Red Bull, etc. I also picked up a couple of postcards & some San Antonio souvenirs.
I had met a very nice young woman named Heather from San Antonio over the internet back in February. This was going to be our 4th time seeing each other. We went to a place called Old San Francisco
. We were very surprised to find the parking lot quite empty. It was a very nice place, nice surroundings, a guy playing the piano (heavy on the show tunes & Beatles), and once an hour, a girl gets onto a swing, & then swings herself back & forth until she can "kick" the cowbells attached to the ceiling (It's about a 30 foot ceiling, I'd guess). The food was excellent. Heather had a Filet Mignon, I had Prime Rib. Accompanying the meal was a good salad, hot bread with a HUGE block of Swiss cheese they place on your table. Of course they also give you veggies & a potato to go along with your meal. Nonetheless, too much food. It was a wonderful dinner with a wonderful person.
I said goodbye to Heather at about 9:30 & knew that I needed to get to bed, as I was planning to hit the road very early the next morning (by 3 A.M.)
Usually if I do a lot of driving, I will drink Red Bull (started drinking the sugar-free kind, because they both taste pretty bad). I knew not to drink any on Wednesday, as I had a pretty short drive (3+ hours) up to San Antonio, & if I wanted to get to sleep, Red Bull wasn't going to help. Even without Red Bull, I didn't get to sleep until after 11:00, I got up after about 3 hours of sleep & was on the road before 3:00.
I think that covers Day 1...perhaps I'll give a day 2 update later today...
Be good everybody
Out Back 5/22/04