Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Raccoons, Trains and Donuts

Chugga chugga
Day 16 (8/5/2015)
I ended yesterday’s blog with the promise of donuts today. It was Eileen’s day off but she had to go in sometime to work on a new computer system they are starting. We decided to get out early so she could come along. At 7:43 we got a text that Wade was up, had eaten and was ready to go on a donut run. We didn’t waste any time and except for a quick stop to watch some cranes we biked directly to the bakery. Unfortunately everywhere we have ever lived has had great bakeries and although it is four miles away in Oostburg this is no exception. We used to have a bakery right in town and that was very dangerous. I love donuts. Oostburg bakery has a nice selection of fares and with the exception of not having serviettes (for my Canadian Friends) it is a great place to get a fix. Across the street is a cute little park which was apparently the gift of the brother of an equally cute little old lady who told Wade and I all about it. So far it was turning out to be one of those special days that pop up once in a while. After eating or donuts, I had a pistachio muffin; we got back on the trail to head for the Prairie area to do some building. We started by doctoring our builds from yesterday but were soon involved in some new projects. At some point I saw lights at a distance down the track. At first I was surprised because we rarely see trains during the day and even more rarely coming from the south. Soon I heard a horn however and knew that Wade was going to be so excited. He loves trains. It was a very long train and Wade watched as mesmerized. After the train we got back on the trail and headed for the Garden. On the way we had stopped to talk to some past students of mine when I started noticing a raccoon following us. He seemed to have no fear of humans and we decided to get Wade as far away from him as possible. I went back to get some pictures but kept my distance as well. The rest had gone on to the Sculpture Garden where Nate worked on repairing his build from yesterday. Soon we saw the raccoon was still coming down the trail so we got on our bikes and rode for home.
Getting Started


A little help from your friends

Here comes Chugga


Love this Picture

Nate's new sculptures first test

A couple rebuilds

Action Shot

Nate's Rebuild

Coming or going?

Being chased by a Raccoon

Said Raccoon

Another of Nate's rebuilds

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

A family Affair

Cranes in the Distance
Day 15 (8/4/15)

It has been awhile since we have made it out on the bike trail. Last week was the first week after “Grandpa Daycare” and I had to get a few projects done around home. My son and his wife decided to join me and Wade for this trip. They have gone along before but rarely have we done any building. Lately my son has been doings some building on his own however. We had a nasty storm on Sunday night with pretty high winds and an inch of rain so I was expecting everything to be lying flat. I was pleasantly surprised when we got to the Sculpture Garden to find both Tripod and another build untouched. A third one had sustained some damage but was still erect. As soon as we arrived at the site we noticed a couple of cranes out in the field just behind the sculptures so I had to take some pictures. We had stopped down the road just before getting to the garden to watch a couple of other cranes. I think one of those was an immature from this spring. I never tire of watching them strut around the fields. Soon though it was down to business and my son Nate started a build using the ceramic pipe parts left over from an earlier build by our friend Chris. I took the opportunity to rebuild a cairn that I had built a while ago. I also did some work on the build that had been damaged by the wind. I find it hard to ever replace one of my favorites. They just never seem to have the same pizzazz. This was no exception. It was ok and it was standing but not something that I would call a favorite. We then rode on to where Nate had built a sculpture in my absence last week. It was still standing and so was the one that I had built at the same location. After finding things standing in the Garden and the next site I was anxious to get to the Prairie. Unfortunately they had not fared as well and although they were still partially standing both would need substantial work. I started rebuilding another one of my favorites while Nate decided to seek out his own materials and start from scratch. Again I wasn’t happy with my rebuild but I can always come back. By now Wade was starting to get a little impatient. He and his mom Rita had been doing drawings and he was ready to get back on the road. We rode on to the Oostburg turnaround, vowing that tomorrow we would bring money for donuts. After that we headed home. 
Adult and Baby

New Cairn

Nate working on his first build

Two more Cranes

Nates finished Build

Oostburg Turnaround

Nate's second build

My second rebuild


One last Crane