We had a great time in St. Clair, MN last week - Gary and Nancy were spectacular hosts. Ben showed off his skills backing in the RV; they were impressed! They shared so much knowledge with us - it was our pleasure to get to know them and learn about their history, city and family. St. Clair was one of many cities that sustained substantial flood damage in September 2010 and it took a collective community effort to move forward. Students were pulled out of school beforehand for sandbagging operations in preparation for the storm, and it was an understatement to say that community came together (some kayaking through the streets) to mitigate the damage done to their homes, and those of their neighbors. The strength, sacrifice and resiliency of the human spirit is just astounding in times of tribulation, and the photos showed nothing less.
Our event was held at Memorial Park, and our Sun provided another day of viewing pleasure to check out her spots. Gary (aka Suspender Guy) had a surprise treat for us before we left :
Custom Suspicious0bserver Suspenders!
I could hear Ben's inner child screaming with delight and fashion approval. These aren't your every day, run of the mill suspenders - they are free of metals and clips, extremely sturdy and produced in Minnesota by Suspender Guy! Click on the link or photo to reserve your pair!
We truly enjoyed our stay and were incredibly sad to leave. Great people with kind hearts - they are family to us now! We headed to Summit, SD for a quiet stop to catch up on some work...assumed it was going to be an uneventful few days. I was enjoying some corn on the cob that afternoon when Ben stuck his head in the RV and said, "...You might want to come out here and check this out."
I poked my head outside and LO AND BEHOLD:
Were my eyes deceiving me? Was there another young couple that lived on the road, enjoying the RV lifestyle while making as many stops as we were? We are not alone - meet Heath and Alyssa Padgett.
Newlyweds from Texas, Heath and Alyssa, 23, decided to purchase a Coachman and travel around the country for seven months, working an hourly job in each state, peering into the lives of workers, learning their stories while enjoying the views on this extended honeymoon. They are filming a documentary as well! We shared trials and tribulations of our travels, and found a resonating note with them. We admire their tenacity to pursue a bigger dream. "I don't know if I can see going back to the real world after this," Alyssa had mused. We get it. Flashback to our lives before this journey even came into creation - we both had great jobs, had purchased a quaint little home in a thriving community, close to great schools...life was content. The next 30 years of our lives would unfold here. Or so we thought. Who knows what the future holds for us, or the Padgetts? To quote Ehrmann - "whether or not it is clear to [us], no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should."
We are currently in Bismarck, ND - took a small break from the RV to stay in a hotel, and are thankful for a spacious shower, a toilet where the wall isn't a foot away from your face, and a big OPEN room. Ben was banished from the RV bedroom one night the other week due to some major issues with flatulence. In my defense, its a very small space, with tiny windows and substandard airflow! Happy to be here. It is clear from below who has already claimed their spots on the bed. We've made some adjustments to our schedule this week, it is updated under The Journey tab of the site. Until next week!
Our blog covers the journey as we roll along - sharing stories of people we've met and engaged with, places we've seen, the discourse between a couple with two animals sharing <300 sq ft of moving living space, and more!