October 21, 2011
We celebrated our anniversary in Tennessee this year.
Yes, another trip! Richard Elgersma, our son-in-law, was scheduled to graduate on September 24 with a Master’s Degree from Oxford Graduate School at the Dayton Tennessee campus.
(Dayton is also (in)famous for the Scopes - Monkey trial.)
Because our wedding anniversary is on September 23, we decided to go the Chattanooga, TN., a few days before the scheduled graduation.
To make our celebration memorable we decided to book a room on the old stern-wheel-river-steamer, “the Delta Queen.” She is permanently moored in the Tennessee river in downtown Chattanooga. Rooms are available as hotel rooms for guests to spend the night and include a scrumptious full breakfast buffet in the morning. The rooms are fairly small, like ship’s cabins and we had two single beds with a passage to the bathroom between us. It was different, so more memorable, right?
Situated between two bridges, one for foot traffic and one for any traffic, it was just a walk across the river to the downtown area. “Our” side of the river was a bit more eclectic, with small shops and eateries.
The lounge on board was just like in the movies and transported us back a few years. Although we could have had our dinner on the boat we decided to go “German.” There was a new restaurant, called the “Brew Haus” where we had an excellent German meal.
We also re-visited Point Park on Lookout Mountain, where we had been before in 1968. Not much had changed except the city is bigger now.
Rick and Monique had also given us two nights in a bed and breakfast in the Amana colonies, here in Iowa and we went there to celebrate our anniversary here as well. We spend the night in Homestead in “Die Heimat B &B.” This was near the place where we had our 40th anniversary dinner and celebration with the whole family.
The days we picked to go there were fabulous; sunny and the fall colors were showing.
We went on our motor bike to really enjoy this trip, taking secondary roads to avoid traffic and to be able to really enjoy the trip. We took a side trip to Kalona, a place known for its quilting and rustic country atmosphere.
Again a gloriously sunny day.
We had dinner that night at Phat Daddy in Marengo, another memorable place. Our “Indian Summer” was only marred by very high winds, which blew some of the beautiful fall colors away after we had come home again.
Although it is now getting a little bit cooler, we still have a lot of sunshine and reasonable temperatures to enjoy this beautiful Iowa fall. We take short rides in our surrounding areas to enjoy this beautiful fall.
October 7, 2011
The Dignity Memorial Vietnam Wall came to Des Moines, Iowa.
This is a three quarter faux granite replica of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, DC.
To bring it into the city a large phalanx of motor cycle riders escorted it to the place in a West Des Moines cemetery, where it was to be displayed for the weekend.
Schools were invited to visit the site on Thursday and it was open to the public on Friday until Sunday. Many dignitaries spoke and honored not only the Vietnam era soldiers but also those in the current war on terror.
My son-in-law rode with me among all the other riders. He is receiving a VA benefit for his handicap, -spina bifida, thought to have been caused by his dad’s exposure to agent orange, while he served in Vietnam in 1968. Rick is very much involved with post Vietnam events and activities.
It was an emotional experience and I’ll let the pictures tell the story.