We’re going on an adventure! I am so very excited. The coronavirus lock-down has been challenging, and I was beyond happy when we started meeting for church again, albeit outdoors and socially distanced, but we were together. I felt a little bit of normalcy again. But this? This is an adventure!
For context, in April, Lewis was supposed to fly to Malawi and Zimbabwe for a month long ministerial visit (along with my nephew). And I was supposed to fly to Israel for a week of touring and then to Jordan for a week of visiting old friends (I lived in Jordan with my hubs for a year, and it was a wonderful time in our life); Jordan will always have a special place in my heart… it will always feel a little like home. So I was devastated when my chance to return was cancelled. But we carry on.
Then our yearly ministerial conference was cancelled; time spent with family and dear friends gone as well.
And then the first camp of the year was cancelled…
and then another…
and then another…
I don’t doubt the severity of the virus. I know that we must do our part to slow down the spread. I know people have lost so much more than I have, but I still grieve for the things that we’ve lost.
So, when we found that our challenger camp (Boundary Waters Adventure) could continue, I was beyond excited. I trained by strapping my adventure dry bag to my back and hiking around our neighborhood, and up and down our stairwell. I wish I had done more (you can never be too prepared), but it was nice to have something to work toward. And the day has finally come! We’re on our way to Minnesota! It’s a 21-hour (or so) drive from New York City to Voyageurs National Park near the Boundary Waters; so we’re breaking our trip up over several days so we don’t have to drive so far, and we can take in some local sites along the way.
Our first stop was in Warren, Ohio (we drove from NY to NJ to PA to OH). We were going to arrive a little earlier than our host was ready for so we went to one of my favorite parks in the world, The Ledges. The Ledges are part of the Virginia Kendall State Park, which is adjacent to or part of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. It’s beautiful there. I lived in NE Ohio for ten years so I have many happy memories of this park. We did a short hike and then headed to our friend’s house.
For dinner we ate at Cockeye BBQ; everyone was friendly (good mid-western friendly) and helpful, the food was reasonably priced, and was delivered quickly. We ate at the picnic tables behind the restaurant; adjacent to the restaurant is a creamery (same owners). The weather was perfect, and there was a steady stream of customers to the BBQ and to the Creamery.
We met one of the owners and had a good chat. It was a wonderful evening, and I utterly enjoyed our time in Warren.
Here is the website for Cockeye BBQ, check them out if you’re ever in the area, the fried cheese grits are phenomenal: https://www.cockeyebbq.com/
Our friend, James Guy, is proud of his hometown (Warren) and advocates and encourages local development and economic investment. He has a podcast dedicated to his passion. You can check it out here: