Iowa

July 9, 2008

“I-o-way, I-o-way, that’s where the tall corn grows”. After being in Illinois one day, from what I saw, the corn is taller here. Forget the corn. It was the concrete in Iowa. Iowa is into concrete roads.. concrete with NO shoulders. Yep, drop your wheel off the road in Iowa and it’s “sayonara sweetheart”. Concrete, at it’s best is perfect to ride on. However, concrete has no “give” so it cracks and then they must repair it by cutting out the bad section and replacing it with new, which, never is quite the same height or texture. As Peter wrote, we never thought Iowa had so much elevation change. We angeled down from Waterloo to Davenport but saw very little water damage. We did stumble upon a most forbidding looking prison in Anamosa, everyone just sat there with their jaw dropped.

Iowa was great to us. People very helpful and friendly. Drivers waved, waited for an open lane to pass us.. very nice. The farm homes along the road; clipped lawns, good repair, pride-in-ownership. Yes the small towns are taking their economic beating, not so with the country homes. Some, I am sure, are owned by people who do not farm at all. Iowa has some initiative to promote tourism which is very nice. Barns have quilt patterns painted on them. Very well done geometric colors carefully placed on certain barns. I stopped to take a picture of one and the owner, Liz, came over and told me about the initiative and later sent me the web site too www.grundycountyia.com/Quilt_Website/indexbq.htm

As in small town Iowa and other places, we are getting used to the snickers from the young men in Harley- Dale-Jr T’s when we showup for lunch. If there is one-upmanship here it’s because Peter and Ian ride with sponsorship prints on their jerseys. They look FAR better than NASCAR stuff. This kind of counters the spandex shorts.. which seem harder to digest.

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