Thursday, November 7, 2019

Road trip, Day Two

Well, unlike the warm and sunny weather we experienced yesterday in Pennsylvania's Amish country, today was wet wet wet. And cold. Temperatures dropped to just above freezing as we traveled.

Today's task was to get into Ohio, hopefully in time to get to Lehman's, where we are promised a behind-the-scenes tour of the store. After some back-and-forth email with my contact at Lehman's, however, we learned we wouldn't make it to the store in time for the full tour before it closed for the night; so instead we made it into Ohio and are staying at a motel not far away. Tomorrow we'll get our tour.

I did most of the driving today while Older Daughter navigated (since she has a GPS on her smart phone). Okay, I'll admit it was awfully nice she had that little device, since she was able to guide us around back roads, find exact driving directions through little burgs and rain-slicked roads, navigate confusing urban areas, and otherwise take us seamlessly from Point A to Point B. It means, however, I didn't get a lot of pictures of this leg of the trip.

Nearly the first thing we saw on the highway was this rather abrupt recommendation:

Since the vehicle had no other identifying signage, I don't know why we were being urged to eat more bananas. Just one of those little mysteries of life.

We passed many, many large working farms, all of which predated the highway and now must live with the roaring and constant noise of six lanes of high-speed traffic literally in their backyard. It's nothing short of tragic to see the juxtaposition.

Our time on the road was about evenly divided between urban and rural vistas.

Since we couldn't make it to Lehman's in time anyway, Older Daughter directed me to an Ikea store outside Pittsburgh as a sort of "what the heck" stop. We needed to stretch our legs anyway, and I'd never been to Ikea.

I had no idea what to expect and frankly thought I'd be skeptical at best and hostile at worst. As it turns out, I was very very impressed.

We spent an hour poking around the store before hitting the road again.

As we approached the West Virginia border from Pennsylvania (where we crossed just the thin tip of the panhandle), I saw what looked like a huge metallic clothespin sculpture from a distance. "What's that?" I asked, but my question was answered within moments as we crossed a spectacular bridge.

Not long after, it got too dark for photos. Now we're holed up in a motel for the evening, but unfortunately my poor husband isn't getting a phone call from me because my cell phone won't connect. (Honey, if you read this, try giving me a call, and be sure to check your email.)

Tomorrow we indulge ourselves at Lehman's; and after that, we catapult ourselves across the country, trying to stay ahead of any weather.


  1. "I don't know why we were being urged to eat more bananas ..."

    Because it's cheaper to stick silly stickers over old corporate logos than repainting a repurposed removals van, that's why. :-)

    Did you get the chance to sample wet-bottom shoo-fly pie while in the "Pennsylvania Amish Country" (not to leave out the Mennonites)?

    It's a special thing in that area, and you won't find this anywhere else. It's a way the locals (predominantly Amish and Mennonites) were able to preserve the ingredients in such a way that they could stay usable for months.

    But it's not for people who can't handle a little sugar, and definitely not at all for diabetics!

  2. I live in north central WV and travel to Amish country in Ohio with my sisters from time to time. I LOVE Lehman’s!

  3. My husband and I went 4 hours out of our way a few years back so we could stop at Lehmans to hands on assess the wood stove you had purchased and then recommended. We did order it and we love it. It is our main source of heat in winter. Your post on how you learned to best use it was VERY helpful. We set a $20 impulse bu limit before we entered the store. THANKS

  4. I like bananas. I remember as a kid getting either oranges or bananas was like Christmas.

  5. snow here today in eastern ohio and accidents close by watch the ice! do not drive in it

  6. brave to drive to ikea in pittsburgh very convoluted roads did you go to the cafeteria and eat those scandinavian berries? lingonberries delicious

  7. DANG, if I'd known you were passing that close to my neck of the woods (seriously-- I know EXACTLY where that big barn is, I've shopped in that IKEA, my husband used to work about three blocks from the yellow bridge in your first picture of downtown Pittsburgh), I'd have invited you to stop for coffee...

    Have a safe trip.