WOW! Here it is Sunday already! Time certainly flies, huh? Friday Jerry & I took a road trip with friends to a couple little towns in Kansas: White Cloud & Sparks - for a flea market. White Cloud is a tiny little hamlet near the river...the winding drive to get there is quite lovely! I'm not sure my traveling companions thought the same as there were comments made about the housing (shack, shack, tailer on blocks, shack, shack...) and "I think I hear banjos". One old abandoned house we saw was so creepy... we were sure it was from the 1980 movie "Motel Hell" - where people check in but they don't check out. Hmmmm! And the guy who ran the motel made the best grilled meat (I thought it was sausage). YIKES!!! (... there are LOTS of creepy old abandoned houses all over...so I'm not just picking on this one!)
There were several vendors there Friday... we shopped a bit then headed back to Mound City, MO to eat dinner at Quackers Steak House and to get a good night's sleep at the Super 8.
Yesterday morning we got up & drove back to White Cloud. More vendors had miraculously appeared overnight! White Cloud is a hilly little town... there is very little parking on the main street so parking / walking / carrying treasures to a vehicle parked on a hill is equal to a good aerobic workout! Buns of steel here I come! I was really surprised that the main street was not closed off to traffic... but I don't recall seeing another way to get into town besides the main street.
One building in town was absolutely FULL of stuff... so full it looked like the place where garage sale & auction rejects go to die. This place also featured a "wall of wigs". Again, to be fair, it wasn't the whole wall... but we were walking thru the cramped aisles and looked up to find at least 25+ wigs on styrofoam heads stuffed into cubby holes on a wall. We secretly wondered where the bodies were!
Local dogs ran up & down the street... between shoppers... in & out of booths. And there were a few shoppers who brought their dogs - on leashes - because their dogs like to shop? (I just don't get it!)
Our friends shopped and bought LOTS of stuff that they collect... we, on the other hand, have 1) become very selective, 2) are too cheap, or 3) plain just don't want to move more stuff... and didn't by much at all. (My vote is for #3!) I did, however, find two more large cream enamel pans with green trim (I just love this stuff - but really don't know what I'm going to do with it all! Surely it will have some function!); Jerry bought some bullets and another kerosene lamp (how many is that now?). While we were walking / shopping we came across a man who was selling a flatbed trailer. Did I mention we'd been looking on Craigslist, BuyItNebraska, the American Classifieds & the local newspapers for a trailer... and had friends & family watching for one as well? It was a deal too good to pass up & Jerry made the deal... and we are now the owners of a trailer!
Around noon Saturday after some BBQ we felt like we'd shopped all we could in White Cloud... and drove a few miles down the road to Sparks, Kansas. Sparks is barely a spot in the road... literally a ghost town...(although we did notice on trailer house with a mailbox in front... and a guy who actually looked in it & went back into the trailer house. Maybe he's the caretaker?) Two weekends a year the abandoned houses & buildings (there's a church & bank and a few other "public" buildings) are opened up for shopping - some are crammed so full of stuff one has to wonder where it all came from, how it got there & how long it's been since any of it was dusted! A lot of the offerings resembled things we've thrown away because they were in such bad shape... but people are funny (strange?) & will sell and/or buy anything! In between the houses & buildings there were tables & tables of stuff. People everywhere... and DOGS!! Why do people HAVE to drag their dogs along to things like this?? It was really quite overwhelming! We walked the grounds... lost each other... found each other... bought a few things (not us but our friends)... and finally decided about 5:00 that we were exhausted & we'd done all the damage we were going to do.
We headed back to White Cloud to pick up our trailer. As we were leaving town... a voice came over the PA system... swearing up a storm. It seems that while he was outside "messin' with m'dogs" someone stole the money out of his strong box. In several colorful words he explained that this happened to him last year as well... losing $3500 for his weekend of selling. You'd think that he would have learned a lesson from last year... don't bring the dogs and keep your money on your person instead of leaving it unattended!
We got back to Lincoln about 8:45... just in time to park the trailer in the driveway and head to the airport to greet my son Alex! He is home on R&R for two weeks after being in Iraq for a year. He was glad to be back on American soil... and happy to see his family! Sounds like he will be coming home a month earlier than expected - July instead of August.
After all this excitement... I'm pooped! Tomorrow Alex & I will go pick up Skeeter from the Doggie Hotel (aka the vet) so he can see "his" dog.