What a busy, busy day yesterday. I awoke from the best sleep I had in many a moon to a cold and frosty day. I found that my car had a thin sheet of ice on it from the freezing rain which was making its way along the southeastern part of Iowa. I knew it was going to be slow driving and a very long day so I needed to start things off with a bracing breakfast.
After cleaning up, I went downstairs to the dining room where I found goblets of water and orange juice waiting for me. Joan started off my morning repast with a small plate of fruit (bananas, grapes, cantaloupe, and strawberries). Joan and I chatted a bit about the weather threatening the state and my journeys as I nibbled away.
The second course was an almond, blueberry, cinnamon muffin about the size of my fist. I took a few bites and then put the rest away for another time as I am a very lightweight eater and I still had the entrée to go.
Fortunately, the entrée was a small serving of blueberry French toast with a glaze of vanilla and a side of nice, crispy bacon. Fortified from this meal, I was ready to chip my car loose from its icy prison, pay my bill, and hit the road.
The roads were fairly empty and I took it nice and slow as I journeyed to Fort Dodge to pick up my tuxedo. I briefly wandered around the old homestead and marveled at the many changes that had taken place in just over a year. Several businesses had shut down, others had been remodeled, and new ones seemed to be springing up all over the place. Yes, it certainly seemed like the old burg was experiencing a bit of a renaissance.
I picked up my tux which was a perfect fit (thanks for the measurements, Omaha Playhouse). The owner said she wished all guys could fit in a tuxedo as easily as I did. Josh arrived at the shop about 20 minutes later, looking fit after dropping about 50 pounds since July. We caught up on old times and I headed over to his place in Eagle Grove.
As we dropped off our clothes, we immediately hopped into his Trailblazer and headed over to the Oakridge country club in Oakfield, IA to begin decorating for today’s wedding. The place looks truly grand. Pictures to come in tomorrow’s tale.
And I digress a bit. I learned something valuable with this blog today. I thought I could keep space open in my media library if I deleted photos after posting them. But I found that deleting them in the library also deletes them in the posts. So what have I learned, if nothing else? DON’T DELETE THE LIBRARY!
About 3pm, Josh ran me back to his place, so I could hop in the car and make my way over to Belmond, IA for my home away from home for the next few days: Klemme House Bed and Breakfast. This fine little home is owned and operated by Al and Connie Mattison. It only boasts 3 guest rooms, so I was grateful that I had nabbed the last one when I originally made my reservation.
As it turns out, my famed luck was with me once again as I was the only guest on Friday since the other 2 reservations canceled due to the inclement weather plaguing Iowa. As a result, I was once more upgraded to the finest room in the house (the Hoyt Room). I had little time to explore the place because I had to get back to the country club to finish decorations and get Josh to his bachelor’s party.
About 6pm, Josh and I were joined by our mutual friend, Reed, Josh’s future stepson, Jordan, and a friend of Josh’s named Jeff and we headed over to Thor, IA to experience Unkie’s Entertainer Lounge & Restaurant. This is a little dive bar, but it’s reputed to have some of the best food in the state and I found that reputation to be well deserved. Reed ordered a sampler platter of appetizers for us (onion rings, cheese balls, mushrooms, and green pepper rings) which were all breaded and tasty.
For our dinners, Reed, Jordan, and Jeff opted for the Unkie’s specialty sandwich (ribeye steak, ham, and some other toppings) while the groom enjoyed a prime rib and I enjoyed a ribeye steak. It was an excellent cut of meat that I probably would have paid twice as much as I did in a fine dining establishment. If you ever find yourself in this neck of the woods, try a meal here, but they only take cash. Fortunately, there is an ATM on the premises.
From there, we headed to the B & S where we enjoyed some conversation and drinks to close out the night. The highlight of the evening was watching Josh down his first shot of Jagermeister. I truly wish I had filmed it as he appeared to be Dr. Jekyll changing into Mr. Hyde after downing the liquid.
From there I returned to Klemme House where I fired up the electric fireplace and settled in for a long winter’s nap.
Until the next time. . .