Strolling Amok

Pops goes on tour.

Archive for the tag “Sandwich”

Two Little Surprises

I didn't do time-elapse shots, just snaps. That's a campground light to the right.

I didn’t do time-elapse shots, just snaps. That’s a campground light to the right.

Camping in Sandwich, Illinois does have its unexpected moments. I’ll describe both of the most recent ones out of order, the first being that people in and around Sandwich are seriously into Independence Day fireworks. The night of Friday the 4th was met with homeowners and surrounding farmers setting off their own ware. That’s not so surprising. What was surprising was the Boom Factor. These people don’t settle for the pathetic, fizzing state-approved sparklers, nor the stacato popping of illegal firecrackers. I heard rounds of those maybe twice all night.

No, these folks go for rounds that sound for all the world like an artillery barrage prior to the Read more…

Sunup in Sandwich

"...Red sky at dawn, quick, mow the lawn!" Is that how it goes?

“…Red sky at dawn, quick, mow the lawn!” Is that how it goes?

Not all of the beauty is out west. There’s a decent supply here, with big oak shade trees and venerable old homes in Sandwich, Illinois.

My friend Matt posted a pic of the backyard view from his new (to him) house:

Life is tough, hey? Just not here right now.

Life is tough, hey? Just not here right now.

That photo somehow reminded me of the violent storms that just blew through a couple of nights ago. Fortunately, the winds shifted and hit the trailer on the nose instead of broadside, but the rain was ample for a long time and often went sideways. For the first time, water appeared inside the trailer, dripping from the seam surrounding the bathroom roof vent. Having already been in very heavy rains before, I’m suspecting it was the wind doing something with a marginal seam. After all, it may be a long, single sheet of aluminum up there, but between the punctures for vents and A/C, and the huge deep dents caused by some prior owner, anything goes. Some of the dents are so big that, for all I know, there might be some tidal wave action going on up there! I’ve been holding off on getting a collapsible ladder that is long enough to give me roof access, but finally caved and ordered one yesterday. I already have some good sealing goop in an opened tube, so now’s the time.

The rain here has been frequent and ample since I arrived, to the point that Read more…

Saturday in Sandwich

My front yard, freshly mowed - but not by me! This is the daily view out my dining area window.

My front yard, freshly mowed – but not by me! This is the daily view out my dining area window.

I gots a host of errands done yesterday, and didn’t make it as far down today’s list, but the vitals got done, anyway. A little of that consisted of hopping on the Raleigh to take some snaps for this post, and a combination of exploring and food shopping at the local downtown store, Art’s Foodmarket. It’s in the “old downtown” which dates back to the Civil War as far as significant buildings go. Sandwich’s downtown hasn’t suffered from the ongoing coma as much as many others, maybe because it’s just a block from Route 34 that passes through it. 34 is just a two-lane, so the plaza and mini-mall buildup along it is limited. It’s obvious from looking at the businesses that, since 34 ran so close to the railroad tracks in Sandwich, that the original Church Street/34 roadway was simply absorbed into the town early on.

And my back yard. For some reason, I find this restful. ;-)

And my back yard. For some reason, I find this restful. 😉

To be sure, there are more than enough closed signs and empty buildings scattered throughout downtown Sandwich. A few shops are still in the process of closing. It’s a shame of course, especially since many of the empties are assorted sizes of vintage brick buildings dating way back, and yet they are still in exemplary condition. They’re charming. Many small, rural towns have had their downtowns become virtual ghost districts, like Darien, Wisconsin. Many have a decimated air about them. There are newer buildings here along 34 of course, but even there, Sandwich seems to have resisted Read more…

Day Nine, Sandwich Illinois

Now THIS is Illinois, Land of the Shock Absorber. Flat, with disintegrating pavement. Home.

Now THIS is Illinois, Land of the Shock Absorber. Flat, with disintegrating pavement. Home.

It was a mere three-hour drive today to complete the last bit of the journey, including about forty miles on rural farm roads. Lo, I’m at the Sandwich Fairgrounds, just outside the fenced area. For $90/week, you get unmetered 30-amp power, city water hookup, and access to an onsite dump station and dumpster. Too bad the Defiant’s greywater tank meter has gone rogue. It reads as empty no matter what. So, when refilling the trailer’s fresh water tank manually, the greywater tank needs to be dumped every second refill. With a direct hookup to a fresh water hose, the only way to know when it’s time to transfer greywater to the Tankmin is when the bathtub backs up from its drain. It may not be blackwater, but it still smells.

There are a hell of a lot of wind generators west of Sandwich.

There are a hell of a lot of wind generators west of Sandwich.

Still, I’m anticipating a great stay here for a couple of months, mainly because the Read more…

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