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The reason there was no blog last night was because we didn’t get  in till 11:30 p.m. after an epic 16 hour drive from Eastern Tennessee, and tonight’s is going to be swift and to the point because it’s almost ten, we’ve been out seeing and doing stuff all day, and we are all ready to turn in and let unconsciousness wash over us, and be rejuvenated for another day.  Kind of amazing how sleep works.

We got rather a late start, but first thing in the morning I met my nephew’s wife and my two grand-nephews for  the first time.  Meeting new people is always exciting.  Meeting new people who are family and therefore will have a link with you for the rest of both your lives, if you’re lucky, is a momentous occasion.

Then, we went to breakfast at a diner in Indianola and I had the privilege of ordering French Toast, a great American dish that is nothing at all like smaženky, thank you very much.  Then Venessa dropped off Quentin (the older boy) at his grandmother’s house, because he’s going on vacation with them for a week, and we waited for her in a parking lot for a long, hot time.  Then we went into Des Moines.  With the exception of the house I  grew up in being completely gone and replaced with a patch of grass, contiguous  with the patch of grass replacing the house next door, the neighborhood looked very much the same.  The tree in front of the house was much bigger, though…like 20 years bigger.

Then we went up to the Iowa State Capitol, very difficult to keep little Mike away from all the stairs, did a tour of downtown and the river, walked through a statue park that was not there before, drove past Gray’s Lake, then out to a mall  on  the West Side which hadn’t existed before (in a neighborhood which had not existed before, Jordan Creek) and then over to my cousin Peggy’s house, where we sat and talked and caught up on family news for hours.  Beautiful place, we saw two foxes and a deer right in their back yard.

Until tomorrow, good night.

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