Roving Retrievers-Tails and Trails

A “tail” of two Golden Retrievers (and their humans)as they travel west:

Day 1  Geneva, IL to St. Louis, MO:

Well we’ve made it to St Louis! 352 miles, 6 total hours including stops. (one a photo op at the St Louis Arch, after all it is the Gateway to the west).

The Gateway to the West

The Gateway to the West

After packing the car and loading up the bikes yesterday we thought we were ready to go. So ready in fact we had plenty of time before our proposed 10:00 am departure. Sue went to the gym while I drank my third cup of coffee of the morning, caught up on the morning news, showered and printed out “Do not use, water turned off”, signs to be taped on all the toilets. (My sister and friends will be watching the house while we’re gone so I thought it best to post a gentle reminder just in case.) As soon as Sue came home from her workout at “V-Fusion”, (go Rachael!), we took the dogs for a three mile walk so they would be tuckered out for the long day ahead.

After I packed the bikes yesterday and enclosed them in the “Skinz” bike cover, (awesome preliminary review coming), I saw the bike lock laying on the worktable in the garage. I let it go thinking no one would bother the bikes but after a night of tossing and turning I thought it best to break it all down, lock the bikes as I had originally planned, and re-wrap the bikes. Well…an hour and a half later I announced I was finally ready to go.

While rewrapping the bikes, Sue gave the house a quick “once over”, vacuuming (dog hair), empty dishwasher and garbage, and gave the final command to turn off the water.  So downstairs I went, turned the water shut off valve and we were off!

Our dogs are no different than most, telling MJ and Bobby to jump in the car, “we’re going bye-bye” adds a level of excitement to their day they had no idea was coming. 1 mile or 500, they have no idea but their tails tell the story, they’re both excited and can’t wait to get going.

The Arch in St Louis provided a perfect photo op to chronicle the start of our trip. We parked as close as we could to the Arch, 15 minutes later we’re back on the road. It was cold and blustery so a quick look up to the top, asked someone to take our picture, and we were out of there!

Sue’s sister Gloria and family live west of St Louis so night #1 is a “free-bee”. Gloria volunteers at a local dog shelter so perfect stop for our first night. Gloria has 3 dogs, Jamie, Pumpkin, and Marley. While family was catching up on everything going on, the dogs too have their own catching up to do. The first 15 minutes, total chaos. MJ doesn’t have much patience for anything more than a nap and it’s a nap he wants. He and Bobby have been here several times before; MJ knows which corner provides the most protection from the mayhem-taking place all around him. The smell of homemade lasagna fills the house. Our time to catch up with Gloria and Ed is only one night but that’s ok as they too will be heading out to the Palm Springs area, we will see them all again in California!

First Stop St. Louis - 5 dogs, 5 people

First Stop St. Louis – 5 dogs, 5 people

It’s the end of a busy first day today, after an early morning dog walk we will be back on the road by 9:00 am tomorrow. We have a stop to make just west of Kansas City to drop in on a good friend and former co-worker. Steve lives on a farm 4 hours west of Gloria’s house. That should make a great place to stop and let the dogs burn off some energy before heading to central Kansas. Next stop on the itinerary-Boulder, Colorado.