Before heading to Chicago we spent 2 more days in Kokomo with my Aunt and Uncle.
The girls and I enjoyed taking walks around the neighborhood. The feel was so different from where we live, in a hilly, high density subdivision with tiny lots. Here everything was wide open, and mostly flat.
This house reminded me of Seattle's suburbs, where there is green everywhere, though of course in Seattle it is "evergreen" because of the mild climate, whereas this place would probably look less lush and more stark in the dead of winter. It certainly was a shady exception to the typical Indiana home with an acre of lawn and maybe a couple deciduous trees.
Around the corner from my Aunt and Uncle's house is the house my grandmother had built in the late 1960's after her husband died suddenly. She built it to look like a Swiss chalet, since my grandfather had Swiss heritage, and it would keep his memory alive as she lived out the rest of her years close to her older daughter (my aunt) and her family. She only lived there a few years, though, moving to Seattle in the early 1970s to help my mom as her marriage fell apart. I remember visiting my grandmother here in 1972, and having to sleep in a closet as there weren't enough beds.
They sky turned black and a stong wind whipped up, and for an even more ominous effect a kettle of vultures began circling overhead. The nightly thunder and lightening storm was brewing... time to get inside.
Outside of town we visited the Amish store, a place where the Amish themselves shop. I bought that loaf of bread you see there, a tray of oatmeal cookies, a wooden spoon, and two pair of grey knee-high socks for the girls to wear next winter. It was fun to look at the straw hats the men wore, the bolts of fabric women used to sew their clothes with, and all the handmade household items. It was not a tourist shop, but a place for Amish families to sell their own goods to each other. There was no electricity in the building and your purchases were tallied by hand, with a pencil on paper.
We stopped by the feral cat colony my aunt feeds once a day. After over a decade of daily visits, I think I finally convinced her to get the Humane Society involved. She didn't want to because she feared they'd just trap and euthanize them, but each year more and more kittens are born and if they aren't altered, the colony will just get bigger.
For good measure we stopped by the local Humane Society to make arrangements. Since I volunteer with Seattle Humane Society I always enjoy visiting shelters in other cities to compare facilities and programs.
Sunday morning we set out from Kokomo to Chicago. The day started out clear but rain was on our tail.
As we were driving north on the divided highway I noticed that there was no traffic coming towards us, heading south. This went on for a few miles, then I saw the two lanes ahead filled with police cars, escorting something BIG. Little K took the photo above as whatever it was went by. It straddled both lanes and had multiple sets of trailer wheels supporting it. I can't imagine what it was. Behind it were more police cars, holding back traffic in both lanes to about 20 MPH. The back up went on for miles. I sure was glad we were heading north and not south today!
I will continue our adventures in the next post, with a stop at a uniquely American farm amusement park.