Thursday, July 29, 2010

RAGBRAI Day 4 - Clear Lake to Charles City

(Stieg Larsson has made me write this the day after it happened.)

The thunderstorms the night before lowered the temperature to the mid 80s and took away the humidity. The result was an absolutely gorgeous day.

Here is a picture of a town on the RAGBRAI route in the morning before the crowd hits. I don't remember why I took it.

The town of Swaledale had this magnificent contraption running. The Des Moines Register today said it was built by an 84 year old guy in his barn over the last three winters when he had nothing better to do.

Someone needs to notify the Visionary Arts Museum, I think.

Another highlight was the "town" of Cartersville. Since the railroad went away, all that remains is three houses and a farm equipment dealer.

That doesn't mean they can't be an awesome pass-through town. They dug a pit, filled it with water, built a swing, printed up a couple thousand liability release forms, and charged $5 a swing.

The Register said this attraction was "shut down by the Authorities" when the clothes started coming off.

In Iowa, you can just drive your tractor to town and park in any old parking space.

Our campground was awesome, especially compared with the misery of last night. No diesel generators, no trains, lots of shady trees.

And folks bringing their llamas by to visit.

As a special added bonus, it was across the street from a steakhouse (with bar) that also had pasta specialties. What a score! I put the whip down on my friends to get them showered and in there before the food was gone. We beat the crowd, and I had some 50 mile tortellini, a kick-ass Manhattan, and a giant margarita. That totally recovered me from the revolting prairie dog yesterday.

Here's the route for today.

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