MONDAY, August 15th —
Chicago to St. John, Indiana: visited with our La Quinta neighbors, Frank & Shirley Schilling. They built an unbelievable shrine: Shrine of the Christ’s Passion. Set on 30 acres, there are 40 life size bronze Figures depicting the last supper through Christ’s death and ascension. It was really quite amazing and the art, music and landscaping were extremely well done. Then we had a quick tour of Schillings Showroom — a supplier of lumber, Flooring, windows, doors, appliances, plumbing Fixtures and more to retail and home builders. These are warm friendly people who have been extremely successful and we enjoyed our visit with them.
The weather was stormy, so we headed out of town to get out of the rain and humidity. We spent the night in N. Utica, IIllinois.
TUESDAY, Quad Cities in northwest Illinois and Southeastern Iowa. Had lunch in Moline, Illinois — the headquarters of John Deere. The John Deere Pavilion had a great assortment of tractors that kids and adults could climb on, and lots of information about the history and the future of John Deere. Our RV Park was on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River. We played golf at a “private” course, Ft. Byron, for $35 each, and John shot a 79 — a really good day! Wednesday we rented a 20 foot pontoon boat on the Iowa side of the Mississippi and spent four hours cruising the Great Mississippi!
Parked next to a prison and put quarters in two meters! A sheriff was in the parking lot and we struck up a conversation. He said, “Can I ask you a question?” We thought he was going to ask us about our motorhome, but no! He asked, “What are you doing on vacation in Waterloo?” Well, lunch and a rest, of course! Beautiful Illinois countryside. Throughout Illinois, Iowa, and into South Dakota, there were miles and miles of cornfields and soy bean fields. Beautiful and green, due to rain and sun and humidity!
Forest City, Iowa. Had a nice campground on the Winnebago River with a golf course across the street. A little expensive — $40 each including the cart — but we went for it. We teed off at 7:15 and were done in 3 hours. Love these golf courses . . . but none of them have driving ranges, bummer. Had a two-‐hour tour of the Winnebago manufacturing plant the next day, then left town in a thunderstorm. Got to Jackson, Minnesota.
IOWA Birthplace of John & Judy Austin. A beautiful state in August. However, a little research informed us that Iowa “has a humid continental climate with long, cold, sometimes brutal winters with plenty of snow while summers are hot and humid, with frequent severe thunderstorms.” YIKES . . . let’s get out of here!