Monday, June 26, 2017

Eight States Tour

Ludington, MI. Pic by RB.
Thurs 18 May:
Richard and Jack to Toronto: Air Transat Flight TS323, Club Class, LGW to YYZ Toronto. Depart 12.00, Arrive 15.03. Great service on plane, plenty of drinkies, cute diminutive cruet set to take home.
I pick up hire car at 14:22 from Enterprise Rent A Car, 859 The Queensway, Etobicoke, ON, M8Z 1N8: White Chevrolet Malibu, registration BZAN 523, reliable and suitable with capacious trunk, a bland inoffensive vehicle from "Government Motors" with poor rear visibility.
Pick-up Richard and Jack at airport, drive to Inverness B&B, 287 Humberside Ave, Toronto, M6P 1L4, Ontario. Tel: 416 769 2028. Evening at The Station, 2457 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6S 1P7. Mill Street Organic lager, 4.2%. 90F degrees and muggy. Richard and Jack note that, in Bloor West, many signs reading "Say no to double density." (Creeping condos unlikely to be stopped though.)
Fri 19 May:
Leave Toronto 06.55 a.m. for Ludington, MI. Heading west, 08:28 took gas off-highway at Pioneer Energy, 151 King George Road, Brantford, ON: $71.50.
09:00 breakfast at 230 Truck Stop, 535 Mill Street, Woodstock, ON, $46.75 plus tip. (What has become a traditional stop when heading out on a road trip.)
Enter USA at Port Huron, across the Blue Water Bridge over the St. Clair River, arriving 11:30, departing border post at 12:00. A result.
Pitstop at tourist information for state map, then Tim Horton's, 8099 Gratiot Road, Saginaw, MI. (Tim Hortons don't use the apostrophe, but I do.) Old Tractors for sale on the road to Marlette. Many houses are mobile homes. Then via Route 66 (different one) from Six Lakes, then Hwy 10 after Barrytown, passing through Nirvana, to arrive at Comfort Inn, 5323 West US Highway 10, Ludington, MI, 49431, before 18:00. $118.66 per room.
I did all the driving on day one, fairly tired on arrival. After scouting near hotel take taxi to town and bars. Supper at ersatz Sportsman's Irish Pub, later watching Delilah Dewylde and the Lost Boys. Then nearby Michael's Bar & Grille. Richard provided assistance to a girl chalking up band details for the next night.
Sat 20 May:
Dep hotel 07:00. Stop for photo-shoot on East Ludington Avenue in town.
09:00 car ferry S.S. Badger, Ludington to Manitowoc, WI, across Lake Michigan. Last coal-fired steam-powered passenger vessel in the U.S. Twin-axle Squarestream loaded in reverse. Fairly calm four-hour crossing with tailwind, arrive 12:00 approx with time change. During sailing sat in empty saloon as staff bedded in on the second day of the season. Mexican wrap for lunch. (Bingo onboard.)
First sighting of Piggly Wiggly at Manitowoc.
Fuel at Mills Fleet Farm Gas Mart, Denmark, WI: $25.25. Map $5.99 plus tax. Also tyre pressure gauge $3.10, addressed rear low tyre pressure warning possibly due to 'bump' on car ferry.
To The Attic Books and Coffee, 730 Bodart Street, Green Bay. US10 after Waupaca, through Custer, (not the last one seen), Hwy 10, Subway at 6018 Main Street, Auburndale, WI 54412: $18.28. Final approach on Hwy 12. Hotel booked whilst on ferry, press on to: Super 8 Eau Claire WI, 1151 West Mac Arthur, Eau Claire, WI 54701. Rooms $95.34 incl tax. Suitable.
Walk to supper at Green Mill, 2703 Craig Rd., Eau Claire, WI 54701. Drinks at the bar, then table service where staff are curiously anxious to get everybody to vacate. Restaurant bill $70.63 plus tip. (Venue holding many graduation parties.)
Sun 21 May:
To Duluth, MN. Dep 07:25, then 09:20 Subway, 1201 Elm Street, Cumberland, WI 54829, for breakfast, $23.15. Hwy 12 to Elk Mound, 40 to Colfax, 170 to Wheeler.
Hwy 63 at Turtle Lake (first reference to Turtle Fence). 53 divided-highway from Spooner. McDonald's, 2115 E 2nd St, Superior, WI, for coffee and wi-fi. Cold and wet.
First photo-shoot at aerial lift bridge, Duluth, a Transporter Bridge until 1929. Major tour objective achieved.
Duluth is the largest freshwater port in the world. Retreat into Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center to get warm, where Richard purchases book re transporter bridge. Attributed to Mark Twain, probably apocryphally: "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in Duluth." But stuck due to its validity.
Lunch at Grandma's Saloon & Bar, 522 S Lake Ave, Duluth, MN 55802. They have their own brand of ketchup - nobody knew where it was manufactured beyond "Made in the USA." I am trying to find out.
To Lake Superior Railroad Museum, 506 W Michigan Street, Duluth. Difficulty finding parking, and then paying for it, turns out to be free on a Sunday.
Just in time to catch 15:00 excursion train on North Shore Scenic Railroad for 90-minute round trip. Sit in largely-empty unheated carriage away from the crowd. Lake Superior Kayak beers on train.
Quick tour round museum on return. Lincoln's Funeral Carriage. Giant steam engine from Missabe range, #227. Articulated loco that could haul 18,000 Tons. (Rupert points out the stupidity of Hitler thinking he could take on the USA.) Could easily have spent several more hours at the museum.
Overnight at Duluth MN. Holiday Inn & Suites, 200 West First Street, Duluth, MN 55802. Sneaker's Sports Bar & Grill, part of the hotel, was rather down home but had no hot dogs. Typical sports bar with intrusive TV screens. and a quiet but bitter argument breaks out between the beer-pouring barmaid, and the barman who circulates among customers, as to who should have taken our order when we wanted to order food.
Mon 22 May:

Duluth, MN. Pic by RLT.
Breakfast at hotel in Duluth, where waiter reveals the hotel was due to close for refurbishment. Second photo-shoot at Transporter Bridge with marginally better weather. Leave Duluth for Oshkosh, WI, original home of the trendy baby dungarees.
Via Hwy 2, take fuel at Mobil, 9670 E US-2 CR-D, Poplar, WI 54864. Through Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest. Bear Crossing, 107 E Broadway St, Glidden, WI 54527 for lunch supplies. Second breakfast ordered through hatch. Hwy 13 through Butternut and Phillips.
15:15 checked out strip mall at 2707 Schofield Ave, Schofield, WI 54476. Richard scored Skyscraper book for $5 at Goodwill, Rand McNally Road Atlas $9.99 plus tax at Target. Cuppa and wi-fi here. County Road J through Shantytown, deer crossing the road.
Pitstop at Subway in gas station, Fremont, WI, Hwy 110, at 90 degree turn, last stop before Oshkosh.
Overnight at AmericInn, 1495 W. South Park Avenue, Oshkosh, WI 54902. $222.48 incl taxes. Booked that morning via The car park is full of white pick-up trucks, belonging mainly to Latino gardeners/road crews. Short walk to supper at West End Pizza, 1414 West 20th Avenue, Oshkosh, WI - cavernous shed, choice of beers, good service, opposite airport. $98.88 plus $15 tip.
Tues 23 May:
To Chicago, IL. A picture of the Concorde plane in the hotel looks like it was at the nearby Oshkosh airfield, strangely dubbed Wittman Regional Airport. When you have a world-renowned name why not use it? The Concorde appeared on a number of occasions at the famous airshow.
We make a stop at a Horicon thrift store, but it was not yet open. Through Slinger and Ridgefield. Gas at County Line BP, Colgate, WI 53017: $26.17.
Pitstop at Peiffer's Piggly Wiggly, N81W15182 Appleton Ave, Menomonee Falls, WI 53051, including purchase of Andy's Seasoning Fish Breading, $2.19. The man packing our supplies studied English literature and is keen to talk to three Brits.
Stop at Milwaukee Harley-Davidson Museum, $48 for three after $12 discount applied. Particularly enjoyed Topper scooter and H-D XA (Experimental Army), a BMW-inspired flat-twin shaft-drive motorcycle made for the US Army during WW2. The bikes on display are not restored, but in fine condition.
Lunch in "Motor" Bar at the Museum, 401 West Canal, Milwaukee 53204 - Jacket potato, Burger, Salad, 2 beers and Sprecher Cream Soda - $64.51 plus $10 tip.
Leave for Chicago, via Kenosha, Zion, Highland Park. Stop at Starbucks, 3300 W. Grand Avenue, Waukegan, IL 60085.
Great run-in to Chicago from north through Skokie and Wilmette, then along lakeshore. Richard elected to drive. Jack impressed by view of city from lakeshore.
2 nights Chicago: Essex Inn, 800 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605. They had fouled up our booking and still could not find it after the reservation number was quoted. Eventually we made it indoors. The hotel has seen better days, and looks due to be demolished in a redevelopment. Restaurant and on-site parking already gone, one lift out-of-order. $47 for max 36 hours parking nearby.
Walk to popular Lou Malnati's, 805 S. State Street, Chicago, IL 60605, with coupon from hotel, brushetta, 3 x deep-pan pizza, 3 x beer, $67.96. Enough for take-away snack next day.
Weds 24 May:
Day in Chicago: walk to Studebaker/Fine Arts Building (an early tall building), Artists Café breakfast muffin, walk to Hector Guimard Metro entrance at Van Buren Metra station, start of Route 66 at Michigan and Adams, The Bean, Trump Tower, Lakeshore Drive double-decker bridge, then 10:00 a.m. Architectural River Cruise (Michigan Ave & Wacker Dr). Lunch at Corner Bakery, 360 North Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60601, $16.44, walk to Union Station (much refurbished since previous visits).
12:44 Old Navy, 150 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60601: Jack bought socks, 2 pairs, $11.47 incl taxes.
Rode 'The Loop' train to Chicago Architecture Foundation on Michigan Ave to view city model, which features annual updates using a 3-D printer. Discussion re Chicago Skyride, which operated 1933-1934 (though not a transporter bridge, claimed as such by the Americans). I purchased a tray with Chicago cta passenger rail map.
After in-room snacks to Kitty O'Shea Bar at Hilton Hotel, lamentable service and small tip, retreated to Artists Café at Fine Arts Building.
Thurs 25 May:
Out through south Chicago, direction Indy. Through Hegewische, Calumet, Lansing, IL. 08:40 pitstop for food/gas at Dunkin' Donuts, Dyer, IN, - at the state border with Illinois - avoiding high gas prices/taxes in Illinois. Sign in shop: "No Illinois taxes here." Old Lincoln Highway nearby. Encounter intoxicated driver on the road, Jack rightly cautious.
To Lowell, IN, checking out the antique stores. Richard scores toy tin cash register, $15, from Hodge Podge Fine Furnishings, 307 E Commercial Ave, Lowell, IN 46356; Jack pink Chicago Bears shirt, as new $12, from Aunt Nae's Gifts Old & New, 250 E Commercial Ave, Lowell, IN 46356.
Through Morocco, IN, to 11:48 McDonald's, 104 N 7th St, Kentland, IN 47951. Through Fowler to 14:12 Subway, 3605 Osborne Lane, Lafayette, IN 47909, $12.59. Across the flatlands along Hwy 47 through Lebanon. Back in Eastern Time Zone.
4 nights at Staybridge Suites, 535 South West Street, Indianapolis, IN 46225. Top digs. Our host: Kate Burzynski, Guest Services Manager, Roadtrips:
Hoosier 100 for sprint cars in the evening at The Fairgrounds is cancelled due to earlier heavy rain. Disappointing, but learnt about Saturday night race in Anderson, IN. We make a rapid return to Basey's Bar, 419 S West St., Indianapolis, IN 46225. The bar owner Greg Basey lets slip that the former Indy F1-race was worth more to him financially than the Indy 500 and Brickyard 400 combined - folk stayed longer. His shtick is to insult his out-of-town customers. The novelty soon wears off.
Called sissy-boys when Rupert makes his customary request for gnats (weak beer), and refuses to take the Budweiser Intestinal Challenge. (This becomes our self-deprecating nickname for the rest of the tour.) Elysian Space Dust beer 8.2%, and Jack had a 9% beer whose name he could not remember even shortly after drinking it. In conversation with a Kiwi Elfin-FJ owner and driver, Bruce Edgar, Rupe mentions a front-engined Elfin but Bruce declares that it cannot be - they were all rear-engined. A little research later at the hotel proves Rupert correct - of course!
Fri 26 May:
In Indy: walk to Post Office and Lucas Oil Stadium. 10:17 Colts Pro Shop Store, 500 South Capitol Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46225. Jack buys $50 Colts football shirt.
Carburation Day at the track pretty average - only an hours practice, lots of yellow, plus 40-lap Indy Lights race. Not exactly hardcore. $20 parking, $30 entrance per head. Dismayed to find my ticket didn't cover this. They let me in then kicked me out again. They were obviously as confused as I was. The very small print at the bottom of the ticket told the story. You would need glasses to decode.
Fernando Alonso fifth in final practice. Local opinion has it that he is an F1 sissy-boy, getting far too much publicity, who can't possibly win the 500. By the way James Hinchcliffe blew his motor in final practice.
The Indy Lights "Freedom 100" race was won by Brazilian Matheus Leist who led all the way. Third was Canadian Dalton Kellett. Reba McEntire sang the "Star Spangled Banner" intro - son Shelby Blackstock was ninth in the Lights event.
The concession stand ran out of beer. They insisted on checking my ID - political correctness gone mad - can't The Donald do something about it? Rescued somewhat by display of old Indycars and warm weather. We had tickets to Indy Hall of Fame (visited previously) but it was so crowded that I couldn't face it.
Overall I wouldn't bother attending Carb Day again. Much ado about nothing.
17:00 by hotel bus to Roadtrips Reception, Sheraton Hotel. Not many in attendance but good bunfight with beer and snacks. Bus back to Basey's Bar, bill $19.99. New barmaid Mila, from Belarus, coping well with bar-room nonsense from patrons.
Sat 27 May:
In Indy: we decided not to go to the track, even though we had tickets for Keith Urban. Watched Monaco quallie in private sitting room at the hotel on the big screen. I said "Great performance by Kimi - will Ferrari tell him to let Vettel thru?" Suffice it to say Vettel won on the Sunday.
Walk to downtown Monument Circle for the parade. There are Jesus Freaks everywhere, promoting oddball brands of religion. Then to "Soupremacy," 7 E Market St, Indianapolis, IN 46204, a friendly coffee shop opposite the Hilton Garden Inn.
10:00 The Circle Center, Carsons, 1 West Washington Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204. Jack bought some Levis, $42.
Watching parade in the sunshine, which proceeds at a glacial pace. Vintage bicycles, Police Motorcycle Display Team, Marching band with "World's largest drum", Camaro pace cars, cheerleaders, horses etc.
To Hilton Hotel to buy a copy of the Indianapolis Star. There were apologies on the PA re protestors - who could they mean?

Anderson, IN. Pic by RLT.
Dep 16:00 for saturday night at the PAY LESS "Little 500" presented by UAW/GM, a sprint car race at Anderson, IN. 16:09 Speedway Indianapolis, 46225: gas $25.95 ($2.199 per gallon). Sprint cars feature 900 bhp V8 on quarter-mile asphalt oval. Winner was #5 Kyle Hamilton of Indianapolis. Former NASCAR champion Tony Stewart was third. Veteran Ken Schrader also in the field. The race was a sellout with capacity crowd. We had to stand on uneven pavement throughout. Accompanied by Bruce Edgar, the Kiwi FJ racer, due at Mosport later in June. Delayed departure as we'd lost Bruce. Woman complaining of migraine from our car headlamps, apparently not brought on by 33 roaring V8s.
Anderson, IN, is an old GM town, which has lost many plants and jobs. On the way to Anderson I note a billboard promoting South Bend, IN: "An Urban Playground." I've been in every state of the union and never felt more frightened than in South Bend: "Where they close the cash machines at sundown" would be a more accurate slogan.
Sun 28 May:
Indy 500 - police-escorted coach #2098 from Staybridge Suites to the race.
Started watching Monaco G.P. in the hotel. Then satellite TV and Apple phone on the bus. The handheld filled in the gaps when we lost the satellite among the skyscrapers in Indy. Lengthy walk to Paddock Stand, high rows, opposite pits. Much confusion among race-goers about where to sit.
Planes towing advertising banners overhead. Much hoopla before the start of the race. Mike Pence, VPOTUS, makes an appearance to warm applause - he is after all a Hoosier. There is a parade of old drivers: A.J. Foyt, Mario Andretti, Bobby Unser, Arie Luyendijk, Rick Mears, Johnny Rutherford, Kenny Brack, Dario Franchitti, Gil De Ferran, Bobby Rahal, Al Unser Jr.
Scott Dixon, the pole-sitter, and Dario Franchitti had been robbed at gunpoint in a Taco Bell drive-through earlier in the week by two young punks, bringing unwelcome publicity all around the world. An Armed Forces parade proves they have forgotten how to march.
Music by Jonathan Jackson + Enation, an indie rock band. They did not get a mention in the running order. (The Indy 500 is desparately trying to attract a younger audience before all the old geezers in the stands die out.) Then numerous anthems, hymns, invocations etc. "Back home in Indiana." Finally the main event gets under way. An interesting race, with good information on placings and number of laps, until Dixon has a crash with Jay Howard on Lap 53, which looked bad but both walked away. This brought out the red flags.
Alonso and Hunter-Reay both had a Honda engine grenade. Alonso, with rookie stripes on the back of his car, looked like he had been doing this all his life. Later picked up R-O-Y gong.
In all there followed 50 laps of yellow at varying intervals, which added significantly to the time the race took to complete and frequently spoilt the excitement of the close running and overtaking. The loudspeakers encouraged the crowd to look forward to all the restarts - more than the race itself, it seemed. Max Chilton (4th) and Helio Castroneves (2nd) faded in the late going. Ed Jones was 3rd. Takuma Sato, with Honda engine intact, won the Indy 500.
(A reflection on the race event demographics: Jack noted only 3 Afro-American people among the 350,000 crowd. One was on the stage singing, and two were VIPs in the pit-lane.)
Basey's was occupied, but doors locked front and back and entry impossible, so anticlimactically we went to the Holiday Inn for a nondescript pasta and a few beers. The lone waitress, surprised to be serving at the only open bar in the neighbourhood, did very well but was run off her feet.
Mon 29 May:

Indianapolis, IN. Pic by RLT.
Solo walk round the downtown. Great old buildings, motel, welding shop etc. To Eli Lilly HQ: "Research is to see what everyone else has seen, and to think what nobody else has thought." - Albert Szent Györgyi.
There are fresh bike paths everywhere. Indy has Pacers Bike Share, Blue Indy electric cars (part of an effort to make Indiana the electric-car state? Electric cars do not reduce congestion? Are these just fads?) Why doesn't Indianapolis create a cycle-highway from downtown to the race track? They could incentivise race-goers to arrive by bicycle? Provide secure bicycle parking? Get some eco-kudos? Motor racing is often criticised for wasting gas - most of which is burned up by the spectators getting to and from the track and sitting in jams.
New buildings - J.W. Marriot Hotel, Lucas Oil Stadium, Convention Center - evidence of renewal. Walked to the interesting new bus station, opened in 2016, along "The Franciscan Way" past the Monon County Jail. Many streets have alternative names for race drivers e.g. Alonso Ave. Much evidence of the town trying to re-invent itself, boasting 28m visitors annually. Still too many people sleeping rough and high anxiety using cash machines. The race also attracts religious crackpots.
Second visit to "Soupremacy," Market Street, a friendly coffee shop opposite the Hilton Garden Inn.
10:30 Leave Indy, heading south for Kentucky. 252 Hwy to Morgantown, IN. Richard buys vending machine at yard sale, $8.

Martinsville, IN. Pic by RB.
Back track to Martinsville, IN, Car Show. Firehouse Pub, 21 N Jefferson St, Martinsville, IN 46151. Busted Knuckle beer turned out to be rocket fuel, much too strong. The Campaign for Weak Beer suffered a severe setback. Richard and Jack tour car show. Hwy 37 past Bloomington. Now in karst country, place called Oolitic. Turtle crossed road - second reference to "Turtle Fence." Through Orleans and Paoli. Junk at Hardinsburg. Corydon, IN - Purchase of Pyrex insulator, Snap-on socket, cheap tyre pressure gauges, Corydon Panthers Tee-Shirts. Mauckport, IN, then across Matthew E. Welsh Bridge over Ohio River.
Overnight stop at Days Inn, 2010 N Mulberry St, Elizabethtown, KY 42701. Cheap and cheerful. Purchased beers from Etown Liquors next door.
Supper at Texas Outlaw BBQ, Commerce Dr, Elizabethtown, KY 42701 (after walking-out at Ruby Tuesday). I enquired: "Are we in the south?" Answer: "Can't you tell. Everybody talks to you!" Verdict: Glad we switched.
Tues 30 May:
Walking in downtown Elizabethtown we blunder into Bullmoose Brothers Bicycle shop (Bike Friday etc). Meet owner Adam Lobert. Walk to Vibe Coffee, 34 Public Square, Elizabethtown, KY 42701. Tea kindly provided by local networking club. Thanks!
Swope's Cars of Yesteryear Museum, 1012 N Dixie Hwy, Elizabethtown, KY. Copy of letter, from Clyde Barrow to Henry Ford, commending the Ford motor car. Do not miss this free attraction.
Into central time zone beyond Upton. Photo-shoot of concrete wigwams at Cave City, KY.
National Corvette Museum, 350 Corvette Drive, Bowling Green, KY 42101. Lunch in café. Museum now makes much of famous sinkhole incident.
16:07 T Mart, 625 North Main, Franklin, KY: Gas, $28.91. ($2.099 per gallon). 3 nights at Fairfield Inn & Suites Nashville Downtown/The Gulch, 901 Division Street, Nashville, TN 37203.
Pub crawl on the lower Broadway: Legends Corner, Rippy's Smokin' Bar & Grill, Tootsies, Second Fiddle, Roberts Western World. The bouncers wanted to throw me out of Legends Corner for drinking out of a glass: "Nobody does that in here." They thought I had acquired it elsewhere! (You know you are not a redneck when you drink out of a glass!)
Having said that Legends had the best music, most insults of the audience and, no coincidence, most alcohol drunk by the band. A hapless patron admitted to being Australian at which point the didgeridoo noises started. Impressive "Won't Get Fooled Again" at Rippy's. Drank Falls City Hipster-Repellant IPA. Then Tootsies, Second Fiddle (Richard chatting to pedal-steel guitarist from Legends), and finally Roberts Western World. Taxi to hotel.
Weds 31 May was "Guitar Wednesday:"
Visit to Gibson Custom Guitars went pear-shaped, so proceeded to Carter Vintage Guitars, 625 8TH Ave S, Nashville, TN. Early lunch at busy Arnold’s Country Kitchen. Then GIG museum at The Lila D. Bunch Library, (corner of 17th Avenue S and Acklen Avenue, near Beaumont Mansion), where we had a conversation with George Gruhn. On to George Gruhn Guitars shop and Antique Archaeology (American Pickers southern store), old Marathon Motor Works building.
Early evening drinks at the bar in the historic Union Station hotel, 1001 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37203. Relaxing in splendid surroundings. Spendy. A charming but limited local financial-adviser enquired, "How far are you from that lake you go rowing on, is it in Germany? Turns out she meant Venice.
Station Inn closed for private gig, so supper outdoors at The Pub, 400 11th Ave South, Nashville, TN 37203, in the Gulch (Calamari starter, salmon and rice etc).
Thurs 1 June:
To Lane Motor Museum, 702 Murfreesboro Pike, Nashville, TN 37210. My third visit, helped by manager David Yando with research into Hobbs Transmission, Tatra, Wartburg and Jikov. Trip to basement, 250 more cars! We tried to go to RCA Studio B on Music Row. No direct access so boys to Country Music Hall of Fame, but no Studio B bus side-trip due to museum snafu. Richard negotiated a 50% discount. Jack a return visit to Carter Vintage Guitars. Time out for me.
Fairfield Inn & Suites Nashville rooftop bar at hotel, great if you like watching freight trains (which I do), but cheerful bar staff could not mask slow sketchy service. We headed for Otaku Ramen, 1104 Division St, Nashville, TN 37203, for supper. Good food, service and ambiance.
Station Inn, 402 12th Ave South, Nashville, TN 37203 - Rachel Baiman, support Adam Chaffins, not really bluegrass but folk, too many slow dreary songs, best number the lively Do-Re-Mi (Woody Guthrie). Enough virtue-signalling! Time to go.
Fri 2 June:
Leave early at 06:50. Retrace our steps to Bowling Green, KY, then second breakfast at Waffle House, 2026 N Mulberry St, Elizabethtown, KY 42701. To Bardstown, KY, then via Blue Grass Parkway to Lexington, I75 to Cincinnati and Dayton. Visit to National Museum of the United States Air Force, 6 miles NE of Dayton. Arrive 14:45, entry free. Checking out Douglas B26K aircraft, which served in the Congo in the early sixties. Very wide range of post-WW2 jet fighters.
Overnight at Red Lion Inn & Suites, 6960 Miller Ln., Dayton, OH 45414. $84.91 x 3. Hooters for drinks, then supper at Max & Erma's, 6930 Miller Ln., Dayton, OH 45414. No cold beer, but suited us Brits fine. Best veggie burger of trip. Doing good take-out business.
Sat 3 June:
Breakfast at hotel - best scrambled egg of the tour. Leave early for Dearborn. More yard sales. Some items scored free of charge.
Turn off highway to Lima, OH, old steam-locomotive town, visit shop with Huffy bicycle for sale (made in Dayton, OH), Salvation Army sale: $2 suitcase, four 'T' shirts $1. Lima Museum closed but Shay engine #10 on display in window. Pitstop at nearby McDonald's Restaurant, 575 Market Street, Lima, OH 45801.
Yard sales around Ottawa and Leipsic. 10:44 Walmart, 1720 North Perry Street, Ottawa, Ohio 45875. 11:57 Tim Horton's, 1508 Wooster Road, Bowling Green, OH 43402: $19.72.
Past Toledo, drive on to Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn MI. Very helpful receptionist encouraging realism about what could be seen in the time available. Among the exhibits in Henry's giant toybox is Jim Clark's Indy-winning Lotus 38/1, the last remaining Dymaxion house in the world.
Overnight at Hotel St Regis, 3071 West Grand Boulevard, Detroit MI 48202, situated in Midtown. Valet parking obligatory. La Musique Restaurant: bar bill $147.34. We learn that the first leg of the Detroit Grand Prix has been won by Graham Rahal.
Sun 4 June:
To Toronto, quickly across the Ambassador Bridge and through the border to Tim Horton's for breakfast at 1875 Huron Church Rd, Windsor, ON N9C 2L6.
We decide to avoid the highways and take the pretty way home through rural Ontario. Quilts on sides of barns aplenty. Further yard sales. Pitstop at Tim Horton's, 41 Park Ave E, Chatham, ON N7M 1V8.
Late lunch at Hicks Café, 61 Ontario Rd, Mitchell, ON, nice to avoid the chains, friendly in an old historic building, stayed open just for us. Recommended.
Jack and Richard to Inverness B&B, 287 Humberside Ave, Toronto, M6P 1L4, ON. Jack and Richard to Mackenzies: "very good food, decent service, diverse, too noisy."
Mon 5 June:
Day In Toronto, drive to Sherway Gardens (Lunch at Szechuan Express, $52.87, Indigo, The Bay), hunt for Milani cosmetics at Rexall - "a drugstore brand." Canadian Tire, Lowes. Dark Horse pub in the evening.
Tues 6 June:
Jack and Richard fettled B&B owner's Brompton bicycle and Pashley trike. Day in Toronto, drive to Cherry Beach, walk by the lake and then T&T Chinese Supermarket. Return hire car 13:02. Total 3165 miles (5094 km). Dinner for four at Kenkou Sushi, 2370 Bloor Street West, Toronto, M6S 1P5, $122.04. Then Dark Horse pub.
Weds 7 June:
Bike ride downtown, 20 miles approx. Two Bromptons and 'Goldie' Traveler bike. No bike issues. Lavazza Coffee house, Good Neighbour Espresso Bar for tea. Evening at Yellow Griffin pub, understaffed but trying hard, some items off menu, choice of beers, unhurried.
Thurs 8 June: Day in Toronto then Richard and Jack bus to airport and fly to Gatwick, all on time. Air Transat Club Class Flight TS422 Toronto to LGW. Depart 22.05, Arrive 10.05 on Fri 9 June.

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