Bali and Mainland U.S. – our trip continues
Barry and I had a fantastic and varied trip last year. It took us time to make it back home. For about two months, we stayed in green and hot Ubud, Bali.
And then flew – via Qatar and Philadelphia – on to St. Louis.
We got there at the beginning of April – in time to see –
Mike, Erika, Barry, and I drove to Effingham, IL to see our cousin Elaine; she knows much about our family history and always has something for us to learn. She took us to the grave of our Great-Great Grandpa Benjamin Backensto (the grandpa of my Grandma Ola Edith Riley, who made the terrific pineapple-upside-down cake).
Now what had been his land – has many producing oil wells! If only Great – Great Grandpa Backensto had given the land to us! But he had many of his own children, so that land didn’t go all that far, and he held it generations ago. 😦
We also learned about an even earlier ancestor–a controversial one: Mary (Bliss) Parsons, who was charged with being a witch – twice – and survived.
Besides learning of ancestors, we caught up with young members of our family.
We had a wonderful visit with our cousin Elaine.
Back near St. Louis, we had lots of family gatherings at my sister’s house. We did lots of eating, talking, and laughing.
Then Barry and I headed West.
For a day or so in Breckenridge, we thought we were going to be snowed in. But we were with friends Fran and Roy; they are good company (and have a fireplace and good food), so we weren’t worried.
However, the storm didn’t really hit us. Instead of huddling inside, we walked beautiful trails through snow covered trees with Fran and Roy and ate wonderful vegan meals and talked and laughed over great dinners.
Then we were on our way to Bountiful, Utah, where we stayed with a lovely Servas family for two days. We got involved in the annual Bountiful food drive. Cars, trucks, vans filled with Boy Scouts (sponsored by the Mormans) – and lots of donated food – came to the food bank site in a continuous parade from about 8 – 11:30 a.m. It was really an impressive event.
Barry and I also wandered around Salt Lake City:
At the University of Nevada, we got to see the women’s gymnastic championships – awesome.
We always love getting to meet Servas hosts and seeing a glimpse of their lives. Our Bountiful Servas hosts were great.
Then, if you know Barry, you know he likes to play Texas hold’m poker. And Reno is between Salt Lake and Seattle.
I don’t gamble – at all. I don’t even want to take my chances at the slot machines. Instead, weird person that I am, I went to a great Pilates studio.
I will leave you here for now. We had more road ahead of us before making it back home to Maui.