85. Home Again, Home Again…

It’s been three years since I visited home!

Friday, July 17, 2020

I was planning on heading south on I29 this morning and traveling the 300 + miles to Sioux Falls, SD to pick up my mail including my MT plates to go on the MH. Looking at the weather and forecast, the day was going to turn nasty and my location in Grand Forks was shown to be on the very north side or even outside of the bad weather. So I elected to stay another night. The forecast was wrong. By late afternoon it was clear the entire bad weather area had moved north. The storm clouds rolled in from the west.

The winds howled. The TV channels were wall to wall meteorologists. Ground winds reported in towns west of 60 mph, 70 mph and even 80 mph with the entire front moving eastbound at 50 mph. The weathermen seemed to be impressed with wind speeds reported at cloud level at 140 mph. Thankfully my orientation in the campsite was East/west and as I was presenting then the smallest area to the storm, I didn’t have to move. I did bring in all four slide outs for less sail area and greater stability. The slides were just in and the rain started. The park rangers came by and invited the campers to the fire station a block away. I drove there, checked in and joined about 30 other masked campers in a conference room in the center of the bldg. The leading edge moved through quickly and I left to head back to the MH after about 15 minutes. All was well and I put the slides back out and settled in for some hours of rain. And rain. And rain. Nearly 2”.

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Finally a travel day. Blue skies but very windy out of the west meaning as I traveled south I presented the side of the MH to the wind. It was work driving today! I stopped approx midway for a good nap. I set my alarm for 1.5 hours and turned off my map tracking program – hence two parts.

A total of 320 miles 5.25 hrs driving time.

Though windy, it was a pretty day. A blue panoramic sky with one small fluffy orphaned cloud and apparently little wind up at cloud level to move it along. It lingered it seemed forever as though hanging like an ornament on the Christmas tree.

My drivers seat in this MH is high, like in a semi truck, giving me a better overview than with any of my prior motorhomes or 5th wheel tow trucks. It was ‘fun’ or enjoyable watching the corn fields. The corn is easily over 7’ tall and mostly has started to tassel. From my vantage point, I could look over the tops of entire fields. The stiff winds really rustled the deep green leaves and tan tassels. A sparkling green wavy sea with tan gems sparkling often framed by graying rustic fencing. The field ponds had small whitecaps. I especially liked the occasional wheat fields. A lower crop meant an even higher view and longer vista. Unlike corn with its thick sturdy stalk, wheat has a thin stalk and so wind waves are accentuated from the ground to the top. The variegation from the darker stalk to the lighter germ and chaff, the wispiness of the stem and the wind produces very colorful, almost hypnotic, waves across the fields. ‘Amber waves of grain’ one might say. Soybeans in the wind – meh!

The further south I got, into SD, the more the wind died down, skies clouded up a bit more and the driving became easier. It’s been awhile since the MH had a real bath with soap (I do try to clean the dead bugs off the front regularly) so I got in line with a bunch of trucks to get a wash. Six young men swarming over the MH can get it sparkling in about 15 minutes vs. some hours with a declining rate of cleaning by an old man like me.

I got a site for a few nights at the fairgrounds in Sioux Falls. I’ve stayed there before and the camping facility is very good with w/e sites or full hookup sites. The complex houses the Armory as well as probably 15-20 buildings used for the fair. I’m guessing sites are hard to come by during the fair and exhibitions. I’m parked alongside their largest exhibition building. Monday I’ll get my mail and plates and hopefully all of my Rx’s. A visit to Walmart is part of the plan and I’ll stop at the nearby Freightliner Truck shop and see if they have, in stock, a round chrome dome that covers the front wheel hub. It popped off and was lost about a week ago.

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