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My Kind of Politics!

November 9, 2012

Missouri – Tuesday, November 6

I started my day with some interesting presidential trivia, which was appropriate for this important election day. St. Joseph was the starting point for the Pony Express mail delivery back in 1860-1861, and I went to see the monument and the old pony stables. I read that back in 1860 when Abraham Lincoln won the presidential election, the folks out in California had to wait 10 days for the pony express rider to bring them the news of their new president – and that was considered speedy communication for the times! And now we impatiently wait to hear the results on the very same day! There was a Pony Express motel next to the Pony Express Museum, and it was old – the motel sign was one of those gaudy cowboy signs from the 50s and 60s – made me think back to some of the road trips of my youth! I sort of wanted to see it all lit up at night!

Tula and I walked about 3 miles around town and out into one of the neighborhoods. Again, there was sort of an air of former prosperity that just hasn’t continued – some more empty storefronts and not a lot of people out and about. There’s lots of nice looking brick buildings, but maybe they’re just really expensive to update and maintain. Outlaw Jesse James’ home is preserved here in St. Joseph – they try to lure people in to see the actual bullet hole in his house from when he was killed. Didn’t appeal to me!

After finishing our city walk, I belatedly discovered there was a nice river walk by the Missouri River. So we headed down to the river and got in another 4 miles. The path was paved and clear, but it was very obvious there had been some major damage to trees and grasses all around due to flooding…which I think happened last year. There was a nice nature center near the midpoint of the trail, and it’s built on stilts. I have trouble picturing the river overflowing with so much water over such a widespread area. There were also a couple of railroad tracks running near the river, and I continue to be surprised at how many loooong coal trains go by – I counted about 180 train cars of coal in one train, and they all seem to be about that long. I don’t know where all that coal is coming from.

Then it was time to take care of my donation-of-the-day. I’d had an idea while I was out walking, and I had to do a little research to see if I could do what I wanted, and it worked out. Since it was election day, I thought my donation should be somehow connected to that, but I also wanted to be fair to both sides. So…I ended up giving half my donation to elephants (the elephant conservation program at the Kansas City, Missouri zoo) and the other half to donkeys (Longmeadow Rescue Ranch – the biggest rescue ranch in Missouri and they currently have donkeys). I wrote a note explaining my donation and they’ll probably think I’m crazy, but oh well!

And then I headed to Independence, Missouri for my final presidential connection of the day – an ice cream sundae in an old-fashioned 1908 soda fountain where former President Harry S Truman once worked for $3 a week. The name of the soda fountain shop is Clinton’s (yet another presidential connection!) and it was the cutest little place – already decorated for Christmas with old-fashioned decorations. Then Tula and I took a short walk around town before dark (yes, I ruined my dinner appetite!) but I knew we’d be back for more walking in the morning. Independence is a classic turn-of-the-century midwest town and I wanted to see more!

It may have been a historical day for Obama and Romney, but I liked my day with Lincoln, elephants, donkeys, Clinton and Truman better!!

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One Comment
  1. Looks like Clintons would be a good place for a real cherry coke.
    On the day that your grandson was born, your second day of adventure, did you think of setting him up with a savings account at $56 ?

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