We went to the Milwaukee County Zoo. I used to go there as a kid in the 70's. They used to have a huge Gorilla named Sampson, who died in the 80's. I hadn't been to the Zoo since 1980 or 1981. It has changed a lot, but they still had the old exhibits of glass and jail bars - they were empty, but I had flashbacks to Sampson sitting in the concrete cell against the back wall. It made me sad that he used to sit in there and didn't get to experience the fabulous habitats zoos have now. I realized that as a kid as afraid as I was of him, he probably looked the way he did because he was sad! :(
|Rafikki from The Lion King- LOL.|
|They were looking right at us. They had just finished eating.|
|Snow Leopard with Noodle and S.|
That night after the zoo, my friend and I took Noodle the the Lego store in Milwaukee. It was really cool!
We visited the town I lived in until I was 12. My happiest childhood memories were from this little town. The neighborhood was so covered with trees that I hardly recognized it. The coolest thing about the visit was that I actually got to go in to the house we lived in. I had previously googled the address and the current owner has a website and a Facebook page. I messaged him on Facebook and he told me to drop by. We did and he and his wife gave us the tour. It was so strange!! When I get back to Texas I am scanning pictures for him of what the place looked like when we built it and lived there. He is the 4th owner, but has been there for 20 years.
|Ha!! The sidewalk across the street where I wrote in "Rick S." for Rick Springfield in 1982! It was still there along with initials and names from other kids on our cul-de-sac. I was so excited to see it was still there!!|
|One of the only original features on the house- the garage door leading in to the house. He opened the door and I had flashbacks - the door knob is even the original. Those were the days, solid craftsmanship.|
|See that pegboard with the tools hanging on it? My Daddy hung that in 1976 !!! It's still there.|
While we were in town, we went by our old schools and we at at two restaurants that were still there. We also met up with a childhood friend and her little boy, at the park that was across the street from my old house. We first met when we were in Kindergarten or First Grade. She is still in the same neighborhood.
|Kids by the lake.|
We left Milwaukee. I was sad to leave my friend behind. Now that I know the trip would only take two nights at a hotel, or one with a really long day of driving, I may have to visit her more often. We headed out early and spent most of the day on the road.
|Sleeping on the road.|
|The room in Lancaster, OH was huge. It was just a stopping/sleepover point.|
|Hot tub in the room! LOL|
Crazy long day. We left Lancaster, OH and headed to Pennsylvania to visit the cemetery where my Dad is buried. I had never been to it before. Noodle never met my Dad and Bear was only 18 months old when he died. Only Super Duper has memories of him. Anyway, after about 7 hours we got to the "town" where he's buried, but we drove aimlessly for 2 hours trying to find the church cemetery! I almost gave up because it put us way behind schedule. Finally we found it and then we had to search the cemetery to find him! We found him because he is buried by his father who had a flag, so we looked at all the headstones with a flag and there he was next door. I miss my Daddy. It started to rain on us so our visit was brief.
|Daddy's resting place- in the middle of "Nowhere" Pennsylvania!|
We got lost some more leaving the cemetery, but finally we made it to the hotel around 9pm after driving through horrid rain and surviving CRAZY and RUDE drivers. I will tell you what, I am going to do my best to NEVER drive on the Pennsylvania turnpike again! It was awful. The tunnels in the Allegheny Mountains were kind of cool though. I also learned that my deceased grandfather on my Dad's side, helped to build the turnpike or tunnel.
|Finally- arrival at our suite! Safe and sound - thankful.|
We were so thankful to arrive at the hotel. We had a great room - ground floor - a mini apartment. It had a fully stocked kitchen, a bath, a living room and a bedroom. The sofa pulled out to a bed.
Coming - Day 11 in Philadelphia!!