11. Jul, 2016

09.07.16 Annawan, Illinois to Vinton, Iowa

Up with excitement this morning.  We both enjoy the tv programme ‘American Pickers’ on the History Channel at home, and we had a chance to swing by their shop, so the draw was just too much.

On the programme Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz travel America, looking for good ‘picks’, which means visiting various collectors of memorabilia in their homes, and trying to negotiate to buy some of their precious collections.  They have particular names for things, Folk Art, Americana, and love anything old, be it automobiles, toys, machinery, vintage signs, whatever.

Anyway, we made our way to LeClaire where their shop, Antique Archaeology is based, in Iowa.  What a beautiful place, it is at the side of the Mississippi river, and is a town chock full of beautiful shops and antique emporiums.  The atmosphere there reminded us very much of our home town in the U.K, beautiful Whitstable.

Anyway, we rolled up onto the drive (which deceptively behind a gas station- doesn’t look like that on the telly!), and lo and behold, Mike is outside the shop with a large group of motorcycle riders on Indian motorcycles. So, we dutifully queued up to have our photo taken with him, and he took time to chat with us, have a photo with the bike and sidecar, and tell us about a place to eat lunch, and the national motorcycle museum in a place called Anamosa, which turned out to be on our way today.  He seemed a nice and generous guy, happy to give a little time to everybody, especially children.  A lovely and surprising experience.

Afterwards we sat at the side of the Mississippi for a time, before heading off to the museum. That also turned out to be interesting.

Lastly, we’ve been checking out a website called roadsideamerica, and couldn’t resist visiting the world’s largest frying pan (actually turned out to be Iowa’s largest frying pan, not the world)- worth a see, and we met a nice young couple for a quick chat about life, the universe and everything. Finally, we set off for our motel at Vinton, Iowa.

I got a bit overheated today, and felt a bit faint, so must make sure that I am drinking enough. It’s easy to be caught out, because we’ve crossed from humid heat into dry heat. The temperature is not as high, but the withdrawal of moisture makes quite a difference. I’ll take some extra care with that now.