Last night at Cherokee Hills Camp

November 22, 2012 - Jackson, Missouri, United States

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving everyone …..

 

My location is still Cape Girardeau, Missouri in the comforts of Cherokee Hills Campgfround. Beautiful weather and nice, friendly locals.

 

 

 

Found the campground easily enough thanks to the GPS box with the lady inside telling me where to turn. When I pulled in, I knew I was located in the Ozarks of Missouri. Not one, not two, but three hound dogs came roaring out to greet me at the camp office. Little smelly, but just wanted to be petted. Met the owner who is a lady named Julie. She is 71 and is married to Jerry who is 78. They bought the campground right after retiring and have been very happy here. There is only 9 spaces and the sites are in the hills and surrounded by heavy woods. It is peaceful and quaint. The electric, sewer, water, etc. was just fine and the price was right. I pulled in effortlessly and got the rig all settled in and leveled out. Got the water all switched on so a shower was in order that evening. Finally. Hot one too!

 

 

 

Got up the next morning and fired up my fabulous coffee maker ….. I love my machine. Thought I would go into town and inspect the local jocals. Had breakfast of oatmeal and toast at the Pie Bird Cafe. It was hopping and was a throwback cafe with a counter service right next to the chef and all! As I was watching her sling hash it reminded me of Howard and how much he would have loved to see that. Maybe even participate. He is such a good cook. But then …. of all things I saw her make two pancakes and “throw on some chocolate chips”. Then I knew Howard would enjoy this ….. he is the only other person who has made me chocolate chip pancakes (although he teased me about it) other than a lady named Perkins. Great breakfast. Around me all I could hear was this southern/cajun accent as the “gentleman” talked about all the activities of the day.

 

 

 

Decided to drive around Jackson, MO and see what it was all about. Kind of looking for a library. It was this magnificient southern old style town that anyone would love. The homes were large brick ones with great big giant porches. The town had a city square and in its center was the courthouse with a giant clock tower. Reminded me exactly of the “Back to the Future” movie. Exactly. There was also the proverbial gazebo bandshell of course.

courthouse

 

 

 

 

 

Driving down the street I discovered why it was Jackson, MO. It is named after Andrew Jackson of course! A couple workers were repainting a very large Jackson mural on the side of a building. Very cool.

mural

 

 

 

 

Stopped and picked up a paper (actually three). St. Louis Post .... Southern Missourian .... and the local Jackson paper. Asked the lady at the counter whether there was a library in Jackson. She said there actually were two! Jackson is not much bigger than Princeton so to have two surprised me. Turns out one is Regional and the other the City runs. I was able to use the internet and do some errands.

 

Back at camp …. I decided that going for 3 weeks without exercise was “bad David” so got out and walked down the road going out from the Campground. Very rural and enjoyed several big hound dogs rushing up for petting. Missourians love their dogs I guess. Great 4 mile walk …. sore but felt better and very energized. I stopped at the camp office when I returned and found Julie and Jerry enjoyed afternoon cocktails. Ordered a glass of the local “Hunter Valley Winery” best dry red. It was good but not as dry as I like. Anyway, I enjoyed getting to know Julie and Jerry and their three hounds and two cats. (who all seemed to like my lap) They are dirt poor but oh so happy together. She was an RN and Jerry was a retired scientist. (research) They asked me to see if Amy knew their neice who was a CSI in Missouri and apparently well known. Jerry was smoking with an electronic cigarette. I've never seen one of those. Kind of caught me off guard when he puffed on it, the end lit up just like dragging on a cig, then he put it directly into his shirt pocket. (Fire?) Weird. Had a great conversation and they asked me if I wanted to join them tomorrow to travel over to the local casino and enjoy their buffet Thanksgiving meal. Told them I would give it thought. After several wines …. headed down the road to my camper. Dinner was on my buddy Howie tonight …. he left me a nice tin of meat loaf he made from Penny's fine recipe. Had to call him (thanks Howie) and find out how long to cook it. Told him I would have meat loaf sandwiches with it the next day ….. Nooooooo, ate it all. It was so, so good. Read a book and slept well.

 

Woke to my birthday day! 59 now. I feel ok with it. Don't really get a choice. Opened Howie's very famous birthday card. Must always do that with no children near. This year it was titled “Top Ten ways you know your too stoned”. Thanks Howie …. I need that. Set my card from Danny on the table next to it. Connie sent me several cards via email. Ginger wished me a happy birthday. Jimmy sent me an email birthday wish and Terry sent me a great and loving ecard. It's only 9am and I am doing well.

 

Please don't misinterpret this as me being some kind of exemplary human being (because of course I have many faults) but I am heading into Cape Girardeau and the Salvation Army Thanksgiving Dinner place so I can be of help with the service of Thanksgiving meals. Get to meet lots of new people and gives me something positive to do with my special day. It was great fun …. we served 425 people who were unable to attend. (delivered by an army of volunteers) Turkey, Ham, Sweet Potatoes, Stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberries, buns, corn and beans went into every single meal.  We also had approximately 300 people show up at the Gym. After making meals I sat down to dinner with two homeless gentleman and one of their sons. Great conversation and made me think about lots of things.

Back to my little campsite ..... a long walk, then over to get internet in order to produce this letter.  Had to fight the two hound dogs to get a place on the porch.   One barked the whole time.  

Tomorrow I head out for Greenville, Mississippi and the birthplace of the blues.   Looking forward to a long stay in a campsite and to "settling in".

Again .... all my best to you all and I hope your Thanksgiving was as pleasant as mine was.

Oh, and I am "still" younger than Connie, but unfortunately a few months older than Dan.   Damn.


Pictures

courthouse
mural
 
 

2 Comments

Ginger Glenn:
November 23, 2012
So Happy you are doing so well. Great idea to spend your brithday actually celebrating who you truly are...a generous, sensitive soul.

I had a boat load of people...about 40, tons of food , lots of meat left over - I cooked a 26 pounder and a 13 pounder. But, most everything else was good. I'm exhausted...bet I went up and down the basement stairs over 50 times - that's probably concervative. Tired!

Going to sit down and read the paper. Don't shop on Black Friday - but, Colleen does and i can give her a list.

When is Dan's birthday? I'll add it to my list.

Continue to have fun on your great adventure. Happy Birthday. G.
Dan Howard:
November 23, 2012
Millerman, Happy Birthday and Happy Thanksgiving, Bud! Sounds like a truly great adventure has begun. There are a lot of things to be thankful for and many to reflect on as another year gets notched on the board. We enjoyed the day with Mark and Janet and friends and they all send their best wishes.
Keep the hound dogs at bay and get ready for some blues! I can't wait to hear those stories.
Best Wishes,
Dan
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