April 07, 2004
We're still on the road, though now heading home to Maine. It's been a sad, yet nostalgic trip for me, a fun trip for the children, and a stressful trip for Richard (because he does most of the driving).
After Aunt Barbara's funeral, we went to visit my Aunt Xenia and then had dinner with some old family friends. When we got back to our hotel, we were stunned to find seven police cars parked right outside our room. As we got out of our car, a policewoman was escorting another woman past us and we overheard the other woman admitting she had a knife.
We raced to our room and peeked out the windows to watch the scene play out. We then saw a mini-van drive up. Three guys emerged and pulled a box of latex medical gloves out of the back. We later saw someone putting a box of bottles and other stuff back in the van. We were quite stressed, thinking someone had been killed in our hotel.
The next morning, Richard questioned the clerk and learned that someone had been operating a meth lab in the Travelodge!! It gets worse. The clerk at the Travelodge said they'd known about the meth lab for two weeks, but that the police hadn't bothered to bust them until that night. I'm not sure how many of the facts the clerk had correct, but I do know that I will never stay at another Travelodge as long as I live. We later talked to our brother in law, a police officer, who told us that the area around any meth lab should be evacuated because of a fire/explosion risk and that the chemicals alone are a health hazard. And, if the clerk was right, they knowingly put a family with three young children in a room just a few doors down from a meth lab. I find that thought incredibly unprofessional and careless.
Continuing on with my consumer reports theme today, we had lunch at the Charcoal Grill in Racine, Wisconsin and I ordered King Arthur's Turkey Leg. When I got my plate and tried to cut some meat off my turkey leg, I couldn't do it. I got the sharp knife and repeatedly stabbed the darned thing, to no avail. I took a close look and thought I saw...ice crystals? So, I stuck my finger in that turkey leg and, sure enough, they had served me a frozen turkey leg! Yep, it was frozen solid! I was stunned...not because they served me perhaps the most undercooked dish I'd ever seen, but because their menu boldly claims that their food is not frozen. They're liars.
Before dropping Mom at the airport, we stopped by the cemetery where my dad is. I'd never been there before since he died when I was five. It's something I always wanted to do growing up, but since he was in Indiana and I was in Texas, I never had the opportunity to do so. It was very emotional for both me and Mom, but I now feel that I have some sort of closure. At least I now have a picture in my mind of where my dad's ashes are.
We drove around and took photographs of the hospital I was born in and many of the houses my mom lived in when she was young. I saw a really neat project made of old home photos awhile back and planned to make one for my mom with those photos. However, while I was helping Max go potty while shopping in Nashville, Indiana, my camera fell out of my jacket pocket and into the toilet.
Hugs to all!
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