Day 21 – Historic Places

Last night I was having problems with the wifi and the “me-fi” and so, the pictures got short changed. Hopefully I can make up for that shortfall today. It does get difficult when this is what my desk looks like these days; and every evening is a different desk with a different code and password. Some places are better than others, believe me. But, we keep trying.

We got a late start this morning as my driver forgot to download the “gopro” last evening. I shouldn’t say “forgot,” although I think that happened, too. But, if he had remembered he probably wouldn’t have had any success as the wifi was so terrible.

Anyway, a late start. I walked over to a nearby Walmart for some more sparkling water for the cooler while my driver found the Starbucks around the corner from the motel. A taste of home was so eagerly welcomed!

Our first stop along the road was the Cosper Cemetery in IN where we found the grave sites of Eli Miller and Katherine Whistler who were settlers in this land in the 1850’s. They are Randy’s third great grandparents (on his father’s side). There is something so humbling about standing where these folks stood; in the fields where they worked their livelihood over 170 years ago. We love just having a “feel” for the lands that they loved and worked all those years ago. It’s one way for us to connect to the past. The land is the same; the sky the same; the location the same . . . only time has changed things. Technology has advanced; crops are perhaps less varied today; farms larger; and homes larger . . . but there is an essential quality of the land that remains the same. And, we have roots here.

We crossed into Ohio, and driving all “back roads” I had to yelp a couple of times because I wanted my driver to slow for photographs. He’s always willing to comply, but at the spot where I wanted to capture this old barn, I dropped my cell phone and it slid down beside my seat and I couldn’t reach it. Oops! That was a terrible mistake. There was no way I could reach it without having to stop the car. I was beginning to fear I would have to unload the entire back seat so I could reach under my seat from the back and get my phone out. There was no way I was going to be content continuing on with my phone out of reach. Since the car was stopped for the picture, I got out and, standing in the tall grass along the roadside, tried to reach my phone . . . ┬áSeveral trucks passed, and I hoped they wouldn’t whisk us off the road. With my arm under my seat up to my elbow; my rear in the air; and my head on the floor mat, I finally got a tentative hold of my phone and managed to gingerly pull it out. I hope you enjoy this picture. I think it was worth it!

About 1:30 we found our way to “Fallen Timbers Battlefield” where a terrible war between American troops, Indian tribes and British troops took place in the 1790’s. The monument on the spot is very sobering and inspiring. The four faces of the monolith each have a different dedication. One side honors all the American troops who gave their lives in these battles. Another side honors all the Native Americans who gave their lives. The third side is dedicated to the settlers who’s lives were lost during this time; and the forth side is in honor of the Westward expansion that was made possible because of these battles. Lives were lost, but eventually peace was achieved and expansion was possible, although many sacrificed to see it happen. This marker was a reminder to us that nothing happens without some detrimental effect; and nothing is achieved or progresses if everything stays the same. There is honor and tragedy on all sides and everyone gives something in exchange for peacefully moving forward while honoring the past.

Maumee Public Library was our next stop so I could get the National Parks stamp for the Fallen Timbers Battlefield. It was a beautiful library with a fundraising book sale at the door. So, of course, after getting my stamp I also had to buy a book. One can never have too many books. I only brought along about eight – and I really needed one more! “An Irish Doctor in Peace and at War” simply would not let me leave without it. I can’t wait to see how it is.

Just a little farther down the road we stopped along the Maumee River to see the sight of Fort Miamis, which also played a part of the Fallen Timbers battle in 1790.

Somehow in this country the time simply evaporates. It was now 3:30 and we had miles to go . . . along the shores of Lake Erie and past Sandusky Bay to find our way through Cleveland and to Independence, OH where we had a room for the night.

Surviving on a banana and peanuts all day we were ready for a hot meal. Once we checked into our room we found Cozumel’s, a fabulous Mexican restaurant, just 2 miles away. It truly was fresh, and hot and deliciously satisfying. We both thoroughly enjoyed the meal.

As the sun was setting over the Comfort Inn on the hill in Independence, OH, I went out for a walk. I could see the Cleveland skyline in the distance and I watched the sky turn a September coral and purple as the minutes past. It was a stunningly beautiful prairie sunset and I simply watched and enjoyed as I said prayers of gratitude for the ancestors and settlers who lived in this area so many, many years before us.