Hello from Topeka, KS

Hello from Topeka, KS
Sunday evening October
23, 2011 (seventh travelogue of this trip).
We are parked at a Wal
Mart in Topeka KS (map).
This Wal Mart parking lot is large and fairly easy to get into. We
can park quite a ways from the store and that makes us feel
comfortable that we are not blocking valuable parking.
Yesterday we stayed at a Wal Mart in St
Charles MO and it was rather difficult to get into and the parking
was not the best. Indeed we had to unhook the truck to get parked in
an appropriate location.
We left the Blue Springs parking area
about 9:00 which should have easily gotten us to St Charles by 10:30
AM. The drive was less than 60 miles. It always seems that the
short drives are the worst. Even though it was Sunday morning, the
traffic was terrible and then, we came to an area where they had I 70
shut down for a accident. It took us about a half an hour to edge
forward in the traffic (they were diverting folks off the highway.)
When we got within a half of a mile of the wreck, they opened up the
highway and we did OK after that. That said, the traffic was still
pretty bad and our exit was a bit of a challenge, but we made it.
By the time I got into the Wal Mart lot
(did I mention it was very tight?) I was a wreck. As I was unhooking
the truck two folks came up and asked if I was a Colorado driver. I
thought that was a strange question, and then the guy introduced
himself as Kevin Brown – the son of the lady we were going to spend
the day with.
As a bit of background, Kenny and Kay
Brown had three boys in the same time-frame as our three girls.
Kenny and I were good friends and we attended a lot of car shows
together all over the country. Kenny and I would work on some paint
project in the garage and Pat and Kay would play all kinds of games
an compare notes on what it was like to raise the “opposite gender”
children. They moved away from Denver about 44 years ago, but we
stayed in touch. Kenny passed away about 10 years ago.
Kevin and I have communicated a few
times over the years and we have a lot in common. He is an engineer
and loves cars (races a 2009 Challenger). After Kay, Pat and I had
lunch, Kay dropped me off at Kevin’s house and we had a great time.
I got to see his car and we talked like old time friends.
Pat and Kay continue to have lots in
common. Now, they are both into genealogy. They picked up where
they left off many years ago without missing a beat. The three of us
had two great meals in the amazing downtown historic district of St
Charles.
Today we got an early start so that we
could get out of the Wal Mart lot before it became “crazy”. We
had planned to drive the 900 miles to Evergreen in four days so that
the drive would be relaxing. I wanted to make sure that we got
through Kansas City today (not a fun drive normally, and today they
had I 70 closed for construction – had to take I 435 around the
town to the south). By the time we got out of the traffic, we could
not find a place to park, so we jumped on the turnpike and ended up
here. That was a bit over 300 miles.
We are watching the weather in
Evergreen and there is a winter storm watch for Tuesday, late
afternoon (sever inches of snow possible). That is changing our
plans. We will try to get around early tomorrow and get close to the
CO/KS border, so that we have a fairly easy shot into Denver on
Tuesday. If the conditions look bad, we will stay at Chatfield State
Park for a Day or two until the weather gets better.
That is all for now.
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