Ed & Marilyn 'The Happy Wanderers' travel blog


Marilyn & I slept great last night. We slept for a good solid eight or nine hours, and awoke at 7:00 this morning.

Showered and dressed, we braved the cold weather to go across the street for breakfast. We wished we had called Steve & Cathy to have breakfast with us.

Once breakfast was over, we drove out to the cave to thank Jeff for all he does for us while we are away from here.

He greeted us and showed us the improvements they have made in the gift shop and in the Mark Twain Cave.

The improvements are super nice! The walls have been painted white and the display cases and counters, etc have been re-arranged. The changes make the place look so much larger, and I’ll bet that it is much more efficient when large groups are inside.

Then, Jeff and I walked through the Mark Twain Cave so that he could show me the improvement made by adding a safety railing in one place. That is also really nice and it was amazing to see all the improvements they have made since we left. Hmmm….

We visited with Gretchen and saw Sherry and Shelby for a minute or so.

We parted with these good people after promising to come back on May 1st. They will have large groups touring the caves at that time, with many school trips coming to historic Hannibal. I will be giving lots of tours in both caves during May and June.

As we left the cave complex, Jennifer called and asked us to be at their house by 11:30, so we came back to the Motel for a few minutes.

Gretchen had allowed me to use her computer to check in and print our boarding passes for the flights tomorrow.

We are still scheduled to arrive in Harlingen at 2:15 PM tomorrow afternoon.

It will be nice to see the smiling faces of Heinz & Irene as we exit the terminal.

For today, we are celebrating Colby’s birthday! How we remember the excitement of one year ago! That little guy is sure a blessing in all of our lives. Watch for pictures once we get back home. I’ll try to write a summary of our trip and post pictures at that time.

We arrived at Jen & Steve’s home right at 11:30. That gave us a bit of time to visit with the kids before the activity began.

So much of the focus is on our grandson when we are here for his first birthday party. Marilyn & I have absolutely enjoyed spending time with him and we love him with all of our hearts. It is also an equal pleasure to spend time with our daughter. She is the light of our life and we love her so much! It is so good to spend time with her and to visit with her. She is so adult in her thinking. She is intelligent, compassionate, and such a good mother and daughter. We are sure she is a good wife also and we find a great deal of joy in seeing her and Steve together.

Any time we can spend with Jennifer is a wonderful treat for us!

The birthday party for Colby was enjoyable for the adults as much as for Colby. We enjoyed pizza, soda, cake and ice cream. What adult would not enjoy that!

Gloria, Steve’s mom, baked a cake and cookies. Both were decorated extensively. She did a fine job.

After opening the many gifts, we went out to the game room for several hours, to play the many arcade games.

We finally headed back to the Motel and were comfortably settled in by 8:00 PM.

Tomorrow, we will be up by 4:00 AM and on the road by 5:30. We are being driven to the airport by Jennifer and her lifelong best friend, Cathy Jo.

These two girls grew up together, with a friendship that has been strengthened by tragedy in both families.

Marilyn & I were talking about the memories we have of these two girls. Cathy Jo has been like another daughter to us. Marilyn & I can remember many times when these girls were small, when we drove down the road, with those two girls in the back seat, often listening to them singing.

Tomorrow, we will be driving to St Louis with those same two girls in the back seat. Only now they are both married, with children of their own. It will be a pleasure to make that trip with these fine young ladies, once again. They are going shopping and meeting another classmate, after dropping us at the airport.

So, I’ll sign off for now. We are tired and look forward to a short night of sleep, and whatever adventures tomorrow may have in store…..



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