The Spot to be

alumapalooza-tractor-parade.jpgOf course, the minute everyone was gone, the weather cleared up in Jackson Center and it has been beautiful ever since.  I’m talking about 72 degrees, dry and clear.  A big cold front shoved through the last thunderous storms on Saturday night, and then it apologized by bringing absolutely perfect weather. Although everyone said they had a wonderful time at Alumapalooza, I wish they could have had just one day like we had on Sunday.

One of the last events of the JC Community Days was the town parade in the afternoon.  It’s a classic piece of Americana, complete with horses, tractors, beauty queen floats, fire trucks, prize-winners and politicians.  They even throw candy from the floats as they drive by.

Brett, Lisa, and Dale Schwamborn were invited to sit on a platform with the mayor of Jackson Center, as honored guests.  We roamed the street taking pictures and just absorbing the down-home pleasure of small town life as the parade drifted down East Pike Street.

alumapalooza-tractors.jpgAfter the parade we went back to the rally field to see what debris was left.  The field was amazingly clean — everyone picked up after themselves, so we had very little work.  We pulled out the stakes, flagging tape, and markers, turned off the power, and that was all it needed.  The water was ankle-deep in some places, and the mud was reaching dramatic levels in a few spots.  Here and there we’d see the scars of a mighty battle to pull out through a soft spot.  But the field will heal soon enough and if we are lucky next year will be a little less meteorologically dramatic.

As a reward to ourselves and our friends who stayed on and helped, a group of us went to The Spot To Eat, a diner in Sidney. There were ten of us, and we pretty much took over that little restaurant for a couple of hours.  It was the perfect end to a great week, with heaping plates of specialty burgers (the Main Street comes with a pumpernickel bun, Swiss cheese and mushrooms), onion rings, fries, and sides (root beer, frosty malts), etc.  Eleanor and I both had rhubarb pie for dessert, too — a big dietary splurge for us these days.

slaDE asked me what day was my favorite of the week, and I said, “Today.”  That’s because the pressure of Alumapalooza was over, all the attendees had gone home happy, and I was relaxing with friends.  On Sunday, Jackson Center felt like The Spot To Be, for me.

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In the front row: Rich, Kristy, Eleanor, sKY, slaDE.  Back row: Sean, Brett, Lisa, Adam, Susan.  Photo taken with Sean’s camera on timer.

Today we are clearing up a few items before departing.  I’ve bought some LED replacement lamps from the Airstream store (for energy conservation while boondocking), and we’ve put our large items for next year’s Alumapalooza into storage.  We also bought a few other things from the store, including a piece of glass for the Caravel, so re-packing the car and trailer is part of our pre-departure agenda.

Most of the other folks are here because they need things from the Service Center.  Adam and Susan are staying on until they can get a damaged awning repaired (a victim of the high winds this week).  Brett and Lisa’s plans are vague.  Gunny is staying another week to get some aluminum repairs.  Sean & Kristy bailed out this morning, and sKY and slaDE will be gone as soon as their flat tire is repaired.

We don’t need anything further from the Service Center, but the weather is so nice again today that I hate to leave.  Still, we need to retrieve Emma in Vermont, and many other things are pressing.  We’ll head out this afternoon and make a short trip across Ohio to adventures that lie ahead…