Back From Kansas

It’s been one busy week and we are both looking forwarding to some down time this weekend.  As most everyone knows, there has been flooding in Colorado and in Manitou Springs.  Last week on Thursday it rained so much that all roads in and out of Manitou were closed.  No way in and no way out, even for residents.  The problem was that Steve works until 10 pm and the day before his phone had quit working except when plugged in. I couldn’t get in touch with him to let him know he should just spend the night at my mother’s house instead of driving the additional 10 miles to get home just to have to turn around.

Was I ever shocked when he came waltzing in about midnight soaking wet.  He had walked 1.6 miles (we clocked it) from where he parked the car.  Actually, the police had the road blocked about 4 miles from here but Steve asked if he could park the car in the grocery store parking lot and then walk. The policeman said okay and Steve drove to that parking lot and when the policeman’s back was turned he scooted down a back road to at least get a bit closer to home and to a point where he knew for sure that he couldn’t get through.

After not much sleep we got up at 5 to leave for Kansas.  At least by then the roads were back open but we still had to hook up the tow car in the pouring rain. Then we picked up one of Steve’s brothers (Bill) who caught a ride with us back to Kansas. It took them forever in the absolute downpour to get Bill’s bike tied to our back ladder.

Once we got out of Colorado Springs the rain stopped and the trip to Kansas was great.  I loved it because Bill sat up front with Steve and I relaxed (and slept) in the back.

We stayed at the Lake Shawnee  campground in Topeka and it was a super place to be.  Our site was right on the very huge lake that is actually a county recreation area.  Directly across the lake from the campground is a botanical garden that was only begun about 3 years ago.  It is 20 acres of gorgeous flowers, arbors, a covered bridge, and many water features.  The gardens are constantly being enlarged and I consider them to be one of the nicest I had ever seen.  And it’s free!  It’s so nice to see residents’ tax dollars being returned for the citizens enjoyment.  The recreation area also has a golf course, there is water skiing on the smooth lake in addition to kayaking and paddle boat rentals.  There is even a heated fishing dock.

The campground is about 2-3 miles off of I-70 if anyone is interested in making a stop there. I suggest staying an extra day to have time to see the gardens.  Our site had water and electric and a dump station was available on the way out. No internet though but now that I have a smart phone that’s okay.  Plus we were so busy there was hardly time to sit around.

Steve’s parents live in the independent living part of a nursing home and no longer drive so we drove them to and from errands and family gatherings. Another brother had us over twice. And we hosted a meal and gathering one afternoon at the lake.  One of Steve’s nieces had just returned from Kyrgyzstan after three years in the Peace Corps and we had not seen her in a very long time.  Lots of catching up as usual.

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Too bad we had such grey and rainy days in Kansas.  The humidity was 92% before it started raining.  Then once it started raining, the humidity was 67% according to the weather forecast.  How can that be?

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Shawnee is much longer than it is wide.  There is also a 7 mile paved path all the way around the lake that is perfect for bike riding or taking a nice long walk.

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