When the color of the car complements the sky so well, there’s really no choice but to slam on the breaks and pull out the trusty cell phone for a picture. Who could blame me? Look how nicely the lines and colors of the buildings contrast with this car.
This classic Dodge was in charming downtown Chillicothe, Ohio on Sunday morning after my hike. That building is Fifty West Brewing Company, a popular hangout in a neighborhood that’s experiencing an impressive renaissance. Whether you’re looking for a day trip or a long weekend, there’s plenty to do in the Chillicothe area to keep you entertained.
Calamus Swamp Preserve is located just outside of Circleville and is a Columbus Audubon Preserve of about 19 acres.
This is not a difficult walk but it is lovely. The trail winds through meadow, boardwalk and woods. Dragonflies, birds and squirrels accompanied me along the way.
This stretch of trail was shaded and especially pleasant.
There were several varieties of fungi and some interesting wildflowers to inspect.
Calamus is convenient to access and peaceful. I would absolutely stop here again when in the neighborhood. Click here to learn more. Take note, there’s also a paved bike path that goes right by this property.
Then I got distracted by a katydid and forgot all about it. So, here we are, circling back to a smallish chain that impressed me with tasty food and service that wasn’t so chain-like.
We visited the Black Bear Diner in Colorado Springs for a hearty breakfast before setting out on that day’s adventure through the Garden of the Gods.
Founded in Mt. Shasta, California in 1995, the restaurant serves comfort food at a moderate price. The place was immaculate and the employees were all clean cut folks who made guests feel welcome even while they were hustling to get their work done.
It didn’t feel like a chain even though they’re up to 143 locations in 14 states.
Best of all, the food arrived quickly and was delicious. My veggie omelette came with a side of potatoes and bread – I chose a pancake because I rarely eat them and it was a treat. The maple syrup was especially good.
Comfy booths, a quiet atmosphere and spotless restrooms were a bonus too. Our waitress was friendly without being pushy and took great care of us.
I enjoyed the full experience and would absolutely go back if given the opportunity. Here’s their website if you wish to look for a location near you.
If you’ve ever wondered what a time machine looks like, I’m pretty sure I rode in one yesterday. This magic ride was in a nearly century old airplane called the Ford Tri-Motor.
Ford designed this plane in 1925, producing just 199 of them before suspending production in 1933.
Think about it. Just 199 of these planes were ever made. Many are museum pieces. Some have been lost to time.
Only a handful remain airworthy today and I got to ride in one!!
This plane is a product of a time when air travel was accessible only to the wealthy. You wouldn’t be allowed to board this plane in casual clothes as people were expected to dress up for travel. People wore their Sunday best when traveling and flying was an expensive, special occasion.
The plane is all metal construction with elegant wood paneling inside the cabin. The seats in this plane have been upgraded from the original wicker seats and were comfortable. There are curtains at the windows and each seat has a light and air conditioning. There’s even a lavatory in the back with an incredibly narrow door.
I have read that passengers back in the day were treated to lavish food and drinks even though I can’t imagine where that might have been stored in this cramped, narrow space.
Before taking off, our pilot demonstrated accessing the luggage hold – in the wings! That was a helpful reminder of how little baggage people carried with them back in the day. My typical carry-on bag would barely fit in there and would leave no room for anyone else’s stuff.
I was on the first flight of the day – there were twelve passengers including one who paid extra to sit in the co-pilot’s seat. I found it surprisingly comfortable given the age of the plane and the fact that three large motors are pretty noisy.
From inside this plane, looking out at a largely rural area below felt like I had slipped back a century to view the world in a whole new way.
You do fly relatively low. In this picture from around landing, it looks like the plane and the shadow are racing!
It was an extraordinary ride.
I also want to give my pilot credit for the most gentle landing I have ever experienced in any plane- big or small. It was smooth, like melted butter.
This plane is based at Port Clinton, Ohio. The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) pays to travel with it, giving rides at local airports across the region every year. My friend Darlene is involved with the EAA and was key to bringing it to Chillicothe this weekend.
Want to take a ride? You can do it today at the Ross County, Ohio Airport or check the schedule for another upcoming opportunity. Check that out here. You can find information on other EAA events on their website too. And boy, they do some great events.
If you’re on the fence, it’s worth the drive, the money or whatever else you’re worried about. I seriously considered taking a second ride before we even landed. That’s how much I enjoyed the experience. Instead, I settled for watching it take off and land before heading out on the next part of my Saturday adventure.
If given the opportunity, I will absolutely go again and encourage you to go enjoy it as well. After all, how often do you get to fly in a time machine?
If you follow Make The Journey Fun on Facebook, you’ll find some videos there. Check them out!
Sometimes you have to squeeze in what you need around the stuff you have to do. Whether it’s rest or adventure, odds are other people in your life aren’t going to make sure you get what you need. It’s up to you to find time.
Yesterday didn’t go as planned so, when my commitments were finally done, it was time for some badly needed exercise and fresh air.
I detoured to Lake Hope State Park where I hiked in my dress pants. You see, I had hiking shoes but no change of clothes. That didn’t matter at all since I was there for my sanity rather than a fashion show.
My focus this time was on the ground and all the fascinating things Mother Nature leaves lying around.
Red and orange scream fall to me.
This acorn caught my eye.
Oh, and the fungi were fabulous!
Incidentally, fungi always remind me of British writer Beatrix Potter. You probably know her for children’s storybook characters like Peter Rabbit. Did you know that her fascination with nature and drawings of outdoor subjects actually began with mushrooms?
She was a prolific and talented painter of mushrooms, mosses and spores before ever imagining the incredible world of the delightful Peter Rabbit.
Stick around, friends. I’m the keeper of all kinds of useless information!
If you’re out and about today – whether it be on the trail or wandering around your hometown, be sure to look down occasionally and study the ground for interesting things. You may be surprised at the beauty you find!