Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wal-Mart saves our bacon, again

Photo by Chromewavesdotorg

We are at the Wal-Mart
in Eastlake, Ohio (map), just a couple of blocks from Lake Erie.

We arrived in Willowick yesterday afternoon to visit with friends, who had offered their driveway to quarter Odyssey for a night or two. Unfortunately, we just could not make the geometry work -- the street was only 20' wide, the driveway less than 8' and exactly perpendicular to the street, and, to make matters worse, a telephone pole at the corner of the driveway and the street. I would have had to run over a good swath of lawn to make the turn, and even then, we'd take up the whole driveway, and they'd have to put a car at a neighbor's house -- there is no on-street parking between 2am and 5am anywhere in the city.

Had it been imperative to get in there, I'm sure I could have spent half an hour doing it, involving what we like to call the 27-point turn, and probably some wood blocks to run over the curb and perhaps nosing into the driveway across the street. But hey, this Wal-Mart was only a couple of miles away, so why ruin the lawn? After visiting a little bit and trading tours of our respective dwellings, they followed us over here and then brought us back to their place for a delicious home-made lasagna dinner.

We are in a remote, isolated, and quiet part of the lot here, and notwithstanding our general desire to spend only a single night at any given Wal-Mart, we opted to stay tonight as well, so that we could spend most of today touring around the city in their car. We really enjoyed the waterfront area and the area around the river known locally as "the flats." We even popped into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for a few minutes (we declined to actually buy tickets -- museums of this type generally do not call us). One of the exhibits is Johnny Cash's MCI tour bus, parked on the concrete in front of the museum. Sort of a busman's holiday for us, I guess.

Photo by TKCS

We wrapped up our visit with a nice dinner at a local Mexican restaurant that is one of their favorites, where the food was quite good. We really enjoyed visiting with them and seeing the area, and they were very gracious hosts, shuttling us back and forth as well as being tour guides extraordinaire.

Tomorrow morning we will clear out of the Wal-Mart, and very briefly head west back towards Cleveland. We have reservations for lunch at the Shoreby Club in Bratenahl, which we learned today is a very tony neighborhood with many expensive lakefront mansions. I suppose lunch will be our big opportunity to live the high life Cleveland-style, possibly to the annoyance of the wealthy neighbors as we maneuver Odyssey through the neighborhood. The club assured me that they get semis in there all the time, though, when I inquired about being able to park.

Photo by cfour33

After lunch we will head east along the lake, en route to Rochester, NY. Louise discovered there will be a big scooter rally there this weekend, and we're close enough to make it worthwhile. We had almost swung down towards Atlanta last weekend for a different scooter rally, but had decided against it on the basis of time, distance, and weather; later Louise was bummed to discover that the purveyors of a new line of women's cycle gear would be at the Atlanta rally to show off their wares (ahead of some big fashion show in Milan, apparently). So this will be the make-up rally of sorts (albeit sans the Italy-bound cycle fashion crew).

Speaking of Atlanta, we've been on pins and needles all day, with all four of us jumping any time one of our phones buzzed (we are all involved with the Red Cross). While we were having lunch at a local grill, we kept catching glimpses of the massive flooding there on various news channels. Apparently, the chapters down there have things well under control, but the scope of the damage is extensive enough to have warranted a national call-out had it happened in any of a number of other places. It may yet come to that, of course, and so the whole scooter rally thing is really contingent on us not getting a call. We're pretty confident, though, that if we have not been called by now, we won't be.

All photos used under a Creative Commons license.

1 comment:

  1. Sean,

    It looks like we were very close. We were in the north east part of Cleveland on Tuesday. Too bad that we missed you. That is the closest we have gotten to crossing paths yet. It doesn't look like we will cross again this trip, because we are down in Sumter SC, and will be going father south tomorrow.

    Enjoy your travels.

    God bless,

    John (John316 Mac BB)


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