Friday, August 19, 2011

35th State: Indiana - Lake Monroe (Aug. 19, 2011)

"Back Home Again in Indiana"... by cracky.. you know you are a Hoosier at heart when you enter the state and first thing you get excited about is seeing a White Castle. I know what I’m having for dinner, and it won't be coming out of a grocery freezer. Wahooo!

Got to Lake Monroe, south of Bloomington, IN at a very large boat launching area off Hwy 446 at the causeway crossing the lake.  Great place.  No signs posted about “no overnight parking, etc.”  No speed boating was allowed on the East side of the causeway, so it was very calm and serene.  It was late in the day, but the sky was clear and I thought the sunset might be nice.  Still very hot and humid.  Oh, golly, I’m so tired of this kind of weather.

I got within about four paddle strokes of this guy before he took flight.  That was the highlight of this paddle for sure.
There were some signs of shoreline development but for the most part the banks were fairly natural and wild.  And there were some mighty big fish in there… that often splashed water into the kayak.  A couple really startled me.

If the weather had been cooler, I might have gone back out in the morning and kayaked up that inlet.  Looks inviting.

Smooth smooth water.  And I enjoyed the sunset very much from the middle of the lake… you can see hints of pink in the water.  Thought I was getting a good video clip of the setting sun, but it didn’t SAVE to my camera… probably because the battery was getting low?
After a good night’s sleep, I headed into Nashville, IN to visit the Brown County Antique Mall, owned by a high school friend, Cheri Clevenger.  Lovely store.  We visited off and on between her numerous customers.  Busy place. 
If you get down to Brown County Indiana, be sure to drop by and say high.  It’s 3 miles East of Nashville at 3288 East State Road 46.  Website: . Open all year long, seven days a week, except just a very few holidays.
I found this wonderful opal and silver bracelet there which I was dying to buy for my granddaughter Tori, but I just didn’t have the money to spare… since I have to repair my computer this month.  Would have been the prefect gift for a horse-lover born in October.
Cheri, you are a trip.  Thanks for the concert, the melon, the company and the laughs.  And as grandmas go, you are the tops.
Leaving Nashville, I headed west and arriving in Bloomington, I began recognizing familiar streets and decided to look up my old house.  There it is… just a little cottage.  They have added a porch, new windows, and new siding is going on.  The yard however is all grown up with weeds everywhere.  But it was fun to see it.  I spent a little more time driving around town… remembering… times gone by.  Too many memories really, of being a single parent of two little boys, and working and putting myself through college.
Finally, I said goodbye to my old Alma Mater (Indiana University) and headed westward again, ever westward, this time to catch up and visit with one of my first cousins I haven’t seen in decades.

Westward Hoo!!!!

Who is Swankie?

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Anywhere, USA, Full-Time USA traveler, United States
In 2006, I was shopping for a wheelchair. By 2007, I had new knees, better health and by 2008 a kayak. In Aug 2013, I kayaked my 49th state, Alaska, at the Holgate Glacier and in May 2014, I kayaked Hawaii, my 50th state, to celebrate my 70th Birthday and the finale to the wonderful adventure of Kayaking America? Next up... Solo Hiking the Arizona Trail, 820 miles? Maybe. Still healing from shoulder and trying to decide.