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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Day 102 - Part 2 - 4/28/14 Auburn,IN - More Cars

The man in the Studenaker Museum suggested that I visit Shipshewana, IN since I told him that I was headed east in US20 to see the countryside.  Shipshewana is Armish country.

I stopped at an Armish Deli to bring something home for Denise.

The man at the Studebaker Museum and I talk for nearly a half hour and he also suggested that when I get to I39 on US20 I should head south to Auburn, IN and visit the Auburn, Cord, Duesenberg Automobile Museum.  I was in aware of the museum and since I don't have a schedule I added it to my day and just shortened my final destination for the day from Michigan to Indiana near the border.

This is another top notch auto museum.  Housed in the original Auburn/Cord showroom used dorvdealers to come in and not for sales.  Built in an Art Deco style it is 3 floors of automobiles, mostly the Auburn, Cord, Duesenberg cars but also others.

This chart is an education by itself.  The lighting was not good for a photo but my purpose of showing is that this is the state map of Indiana showing where all the automobile manufactures were located.  Amazing!


Cord with supercharger - note the exhaust pipes out of the engine cowling.


There are so many more cars and pictures that I took but opted to give you a flavor of what was there.  I don't have time or care to take the time to elaborate the history of the cars.

They have a big car auction and gathering that takes over the small town every Lanor Day.

If you like cars also add this stop to your list.  It is about a half hour south of I80/I90.

Behind this museum is yet another one that is for trucks.  I didn't have the time to check it out.

Close up pictures.

Note the shifter on this Auburn.  It goes through the dash.  It connects in front of the engine for shifting the transmission as this was a front wheel drive.

After my dose of car nestaliga for the day it's time for dinner.  I found this diner with two young waitress.  They are clearly different and the shorter one at 22 with dark hair and small retangar glasses was quick to tell me that she didn't get along with the other in high school and stayed away from her.  She quickly replaces the image saying they are now best friends.

The other young woman is taller and light hair and 6 months pregnate seems more worldly and this was confirmed when her friend stepped outside for a cigarette and she told me of her recent travel to South Carolina.

They used to date two brothers but the dark haired one broke off her relationship, but the light hair one is still dating hers.

Day 102 - Part 1 - 4/28/14 South Bend - Lots of Cars

I started my day wth the normal routine after leaving the Walmart parking lot with a stop at the Pilot truck stop for gas and shower.

Then I headed to the Studebaker Museum downtown South Bend but first McDonalds for my wifi / drink.

I walked in when it opened at 10:00

I didn't expect such a professional museum.  The museum is combined with a local museum that includes a tour of a mansion of a local entrepreneur, but you can just pay for the Studebaker side as I did and AAA discount from $8.00 to $6.50.  After seeing the quality of the museum it should cost $16.00.

I have so many photos that I can't share them all here.

Studebaker's first transportation to the Midwest.

Studebaker was a blacksmith and moved on to carriages that included 3 Presidental carriages that they have.  The Lincoln carrage is going to the Smithsonian soon for a display for the 150th anniversary of his assassination.

Then Studebaker moved on to cars.

Studebaker also produced wagon wheels and speciality wagons and carriages for World War I and vehicles for WWII.

Lots of history and can't share it all here.

So many beautiful cars.

Fire trucks

Pick up trucks.

And a Woody

I liked this color.

The Avanti was the last model in the early 1960's.

The museum is 3 floors and well worth the short drive off of I80/i90.

South Bend is also home of Notre Dame College.  It was cold rainy and just miserable outside for a walk of the campus so I drove the campus.

I split today into two parts as I have so much to share and only half the day is over.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Day 101 - 4/27/14 McHenry, IL to South Bend, IN & Story

Carol and I went out for brunch this am.  It was a cold morning at 39 degrees with a steady 12 to 15 mph wind.  Darn it was cold for my southwestern acculamated body of thin blood when I stepped outside the camper to make my way into the house.  I contemplated how long it may take for my body to adjust while I rubbed my hands together inside the house.

We went to a diner downtown McHenry that was a short walk but neither Carol or I had any interest on being cold the whole way, so Carol drove.

It was 10:20 and all the tables were taken so we sat on the stools at the counter.  It was so interesting that other than me having orange juice and her water we ordered the same omelet on the menu with the same sides.  How interesting considering all the choices.

After brunch we went back to the house and we talked a bit and she showed me family pictures th frames and I could tell from her conversation a sense of sadness that she doesn't get to keep up with all the people in her life.

I brought up the use of social media again from last night, but with a twist considering she is very conservative.

My suggestion was when she goes to the library as she regularly does to set up a Facebook account and to get help from someone to do it and first request me as a friend so she can start following me.  If she likes it she can add people and if she likes it enough she can get DSL and get an IPad and Facebook, Skype, mail, etc from home.

She is more than capable of doing it and has friends that can help but it is a bit outside her current comfort level.

Well, it was time for me to leave as I wanted to put a few miles behind me today and not have to contend with Chicago Monday morning traffic.  My goal was easy in stopping at South Bend for the night.

For dinner I ate a salad at Applebee's in South Bend and I did some fruit shopping at Walmart, that will be my parking spot for tonight too.

It is very windy in front of the storms headed this way.

I am now in the eastern Timezone.  I found out today that Indiana is all eastern Timezone where it used to be split about Fort Wayne.


I will call her B as I don't want to use her actual name.  

B emailed me a number of years ago and  told me that she thought she was a MacAloney.  We conversed and eventually talked on the phone.  

She lived in Oklahoma and was about 10 years older than me and had found me from internet posts from other MacAloney's that were doing geniology research.  I welcomed her inquiry as I too was doing research about the MacAloney's and in particular one of my grandfathers brother's line that we were never close to.

She told me she had a mother and father but she didn't look like them or her siblings and felt she was also treated different in the family but never knew why.

She did her own investigation and in the end believed her mother who was in Texas had relations with a MacAloney and she married her father immediately after and she was the oldest of other children that her mother and father had.  She loved her mother and father but was tring to put her life's pieces together.

We conversed for awhile and as things like this go we didn't have contact after this.  I called her a few years but the line was disconnected.

On my way back through Oklahoma the other day I was going to do some investigation work to see if I could find her.  I was in NM at the casino the other night and I got a couple breaks.  I found a reference to B as she was mentioned in a recent obituary of her brother of this April and it had her living in the same town that I had for her with her husband.  

I worked the internet a bit more and I found the same last name as hers but with a different male first name.  I called it.  A young child say 3 years old answered and I could figure out that it was a grandchild and I couldn't get a positive response about B so I asked for the male and I got he was outside doing something.  I said I would call back.

I did call back 2 hours later and got the man.  I gave my name.  He immediately and with a sense if force wanted to know what I wanted with B.  I explained that I had conversed with a few years before when she was working at XYZ company. (Obviously not the real company name). I had this information as she would email me from the company's email address.  I went on to say that I had called the number I had and it was disconnected and found this one and tried it as B's brother's obituary has her living at this same town.

Well, I was lucky to have as much information as I did.  I convinced him that I was not a telemarketer, or some weirdo.

He then tells me that B is no longer able to converse with anyone as she has dementia and doesn't know anyone any more.  They moved to his fathers house and kept his fathers phone number and that accounted for the name difference & address change.

I gave my regrets about B as I have personal experience in my life as this is what happened to my dad. 

I then proceeded to tell him the story about his wife's communication with me and her findings.  I told him that I was following up as I had more information for her than I did before.

I concluded with an apology for disturbing him and wished him well.

As I stated, I have been trying to contact all great grandchildren of William Martin MacAloney.  I have made contact with most and some are interested in being in contact with me and some are not.  We didn't have much contact and in some cases any contact with each other growing up, although there were a good number of us cousins.  I have felt bad for years that I didn't know my cousins and they didn't know me.

There have been many times over the years I have been asked if I am related to this or that MacAloney and the answer was yes, but I was embarrassed not knowing them.

I am not interested in having relations with them unless they had the interest too and some do not and some do.  I am glad for the cousins I have become acquainted with.  They are wonderful people.  The sad part is it has taken me too long to do my research and some cousins have died and now B is gone too.  

I am one of the younger cousins and the keeper of the MacAloney pictures and Bible from back in Nova Scotia.  We were a family divided and now we are only partially divided so I guess I made some progress.  There are a couple more cousins that we don't know where they are or if they are alive.  I will keep working on it.

Tomorrow I move more to the east.  Nearly done with the trip with only a few days left.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Day 100 - 4/26/14 Peru, IL to McHenry IL and Memories

The drove from Peru to McHenry is just over a couple hours.  

I made arrangements to meet Carol late morning so I had plenty of time before I had to be there.

I got up at 5:30 and was out if the parking lot of the Flying-J with A shower by 6:15.

Before I left I decided to get a Pilot/Flying-J Loyality card.  I am getting this card mostly for future driving as u get a discount today via my good Sam Card. But I plan to let the Good Sam Card expire then I will just have the Piolet/Flying-J for discounts.  

As usual to McDonalds one exit west on I80 for morning mail and downloads.

I stayed there until my drive time would get me to Carol's about 10:30 to 11:00 am.

My trip continued norton along I39 until I got to US20.  The same road that passes a tosses southern Massachisetts.

I head east in US 20 for awhile until it droops south towards Chicago.  I pass a large Chrysler manufacturing plant with a large lot of full-size Jeeps in the parking lot and double height train cars with sides on them ready to be loaded.

With my turn off US 20 I make my way along IL county roads in a series of, head east then north then continue this pattern until I turn north by a train station Denise and I came out on a number of years ago when she had a conference in Chicago and we took the train to visit Carol.

I am heading into McHenry and like many towns I had been driving through, it has an elevated water tower as the land is relatively flat.  As you approach town you find new commercial & retail buildings then houses and finally the core central business district.

I have been to McHenry a number of times other than when Denise was at her conference.  My first visit was around 1960 when my mom & dad, my sister & I, and my grandmother & grandfather came out in a car to visit Carol & her husband Lee a few years after they were married and moved here where Lee's family was from.

I never forgot my first trip out as it was in a 50's Chevrolet with 6 people it for so many miles.  I would have been about 10 or so.  My grandfather was not well with heart conditions, so he and I spent time hanging out together.

On this trip we stopped at the Lincoln Park Zoo where while I sat on a bench with my grandfather, and the others walked around, we met the famous Marlin Perkins, who was the host of the TV show Wild Kingdom.  

As a kid we all get facinated by things.  In my case on this trip was the milk machine on the corner by the gas station just down the street from Carol and Lee's house in the center of town.  This is so imprinted in my mind as At the time, I only thought milk was something delivered to the house like at home or at grocery stores.  Yet before me was a machine the size of a small yard shed that you put in money and out drops a container of milk.  What also was different was it was a new plastic coated carton not a bottle.

The milk machine would have been on the left of the station near where the white fenced in area is.

Oh I was so affixed on this machine and it's magic it had that I never forgot it and each time over the years I would use it as my reference.  Saddly like many boyhood dreams it eventually disappeared but the memory lives on, at least in my mind.

Carol is a 70 something light framed woman, thin and appears ageless every time I see her she looks the same. Her brawly husband Lee died many years ago leaving her in loneliness.  They didn't have children but they had each other.

The Cooney family was a prominent family in town and at that time it was only a few thousand people.  Now McHenry is over 20 thousand with the sprawl that came out from Chicago.

Lee was one of my male figures I looked up to as he was a kind no nonsense man with big stature.  Of course, I was small but what I liked most about him was that he treated me like one of the rest and not a kid.

He smiled often and laughed with a sound that you knew he was happy.  His signature handlebar mustache was as wide as his face.

His passing devastated Carol, but she has done well over the years to manage and divest in all Lee's business dealings and create a life where she volunteers and is part of the community. 

Lee was a contractor/developer and he was a man who was so well built that I remember him tossing shingle bundles to the roof of a single story building he was building.

Carol lives in their house of over 50 years located on a busy street that has widened over the years.  Today the state is widening it again to 5 lanes. This means she had to negotiate with the state to give up land in front of the house.  At one time it was two lanes with parking on either side.  Long gone is street side parking.

I parked the camper in the back yard for the night and Carol made dinner and we watched a movie on the TV.  

When I had called her for her birthday last December and told her about my planned trip she asked for me to stop by. The other day I called to follow up on visiting and arranging a convienient time and I could tell she was excited about my visit.

It's too bad that time passes us by and our lives get busy and this impacts keeping our relationships current.  Facebook has helped me.  I showed Carol my iPad and suggested that one way to stay current was to use the internet. Specifically Skype as she likes the phone and the visual image would give her a addition demension of staying in touch.  She currently only has phone.  No cable or internet/computer.

I spent time showing her my blog and all the pictures I have taken.  Then pictures of the family and home where she also lived with her sister so many years ago.

Tomorrow I make my way further east.

I'm having a hard time with the cold weather, having acclimated to the warmth of the southwest.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Day 99 - 4/25/14 St. Louis to Illinois

Good morning.  This is my starting point for the day.  Shower at 5:30 am and then to McDonalds across the highway for iced tea and downloads.  The speed of the internet was so good that I was able to update all my applications on both the IPad & iPhone, even the 200+ Mb files and the podcasts.

I decided sitting at McDonalds to go to the Anheuser-Busch Tour.

This photo is from the visitor center/company store.

This is the horse barn or should I say horse palace.

Another from horse building.

Horse stalls

The Busch Wagon

This is the brewery building.

Inside the brewery building.

As the sign says, Mash Tanks.

This mural wasin the brewery building but I don't have information about it, but it looks German.

Coming out of Brewery Building

Buildings in the over 100 acre Busch complex.

The bottling plant has these ceramic tiles along the ceiling.

More ceramic tiles.

This is a big family of beers.

Conveyor of beer bottles.

How bear cans are formed.

Ending up at the beer garden for a 16 oz. sample.

My choice was Shock Top Belgium White  it was already starting to be consumed.

Off to Gateway to the West Arch 2 miles down the street.

Many views of the arch.

I figured I would get the campervan in the picture.

I had to parallel park.  Glad to have the rear camera.

To get it out later I needed to turn around.  You may not see it but I am on a steep slant to the Mississippi River only a few feet away.  Turning required me use two feet to prevent rolling backwards into the river.

It was a nice spring day that warmed up from the 40's to the low 70's and I got to wear shorts for the afternoon.

Arch with trees.

Sunlight reflection 

Top of the arch.  I have been up inside before so I passed on doing this.  If you look closely you can see the observation windows up there.

Riverboat ride

Arch up close

Looking north

Seeming to come out of nowhere.

Another angle with reflection

I took this but don't have words

Looking west, downtown

Spring flowering tree with pond

More flowering trees

Off to Illinois to meet up with Carol.  She is a virtual aunt who lives outside of Chicago.  Will be there for Saturday.

I passed a lot of flat farmland. 

I was hungry for dinner so I stopped at an exit odd I39 for The Sun Rise Restaurant.

It was a good meal.  I had one of the specials.  It was chicken stirfry.  I got to go to the salad bar and have potato soup  for $8.99.  Iced tea for $1.95.

I walked out full for the price below.  Good and great price.

Tonight I stay here for the night.

P.S.  I forget to mention some things in my blog as I write around my pictures.  Yesterday while on RT66 a bald eagle swooped down and picked up road kill with it talons and carried it off.  It looked like a rabbit.  This all happened about 20 feet in front of the campervan.  I had to nearly stop to keep from hitting the eagle.