Summer Vacation 2011: DAY 1


 Vacation is off to a GREAT start.

We began our day-trips by driving to Kokomo, which everyone knows is the City of Firsts.  So we had our first meal while on vacation in the City of Firsts.  Ben loves Burger King (I think he just likes the hats).  I like Burger King.  Anita can tolerate Burger King.

We stopped at Burger King.

Our plan on DAY 1 is to visit the local Antique Malls and see if we can find any unusual items that other people are selling and we cannot do without.

I am constantly amazed at how many items sold in Antique Malls are really nothing more than ’70’s junk that someone didn’t have the sense to throw out.  Really, how many Star Wars figurines can any one guy own?

Despite all the junk, Ben found a great set of Batman comics from 1990 for $3.25 and I picked up a brass sun for decorating our back porch.  All in all it was quite a successful venture.

Our next stop on our journey was the Grissom Air Museum near Peru, Indiana.

This small but mighty plane museum was worth the $17 admission fee ($6 for adult and $5 for student).  Flight suits, plane engines, and ammunition lined the walls with small plaques explaining their history and purpose.  A real plane and helicopter cockpit completed the exhibit indoors but the exterior of the building is the section of the museum that I enjoyed most.

Parked in the lawn just beyond the gift shop are two-dozen planes of every shape and size.  Refueling ships to cargo transporters to fighter jets are located around the complex.  The information plaques offer just enough general information about the type of plane to pique your interest and some specific information about the museum’s plane to make you “ooh” and “aah”.  For instance, one jet was flown by President George W. Bush during his last flight as a fighter pilot.

After a leisurely dinner at Ruby Tuesday’s, we ended the evening by driving to Frankfort for a live show in the Red Barn Theatre.  We attended a recent performance of “The Shadow Box” a few weeks ago and were very impressed by the acting of our good friends, Chris and Jennie Otterman.  The Shadow Box in this play about life and death and making the most of each day.  It was spectacular.

The Red Barn is one of the few summer theaters left and, despite its high price, it is still a nice atmosphere and worth the drive.

Despite being billed as a comedy, tonight’s show, “Kosher Lutherans” dealt with serious topics (infertility, infidelity, teen pregnancy and bigotry just to name a few).  The play is written as a comedy, and I suppose it was an attempt at showing the humor still found in dark circumstances.  The actors were all younger than their characters and it showed in their performances.  When they were loud, they were very loud.  And they were loud a lot.  It was obvious that one actor’s inspiration was Gilbert Gottfried.  One woman must have watched several episodes of All in the Family because I could have sworn that she was an younger version of Edith Bunker.

It wasn’t a great play but it wasn’t terrible either.  Would I pay to see it again?  No.  Was I glad that I went tonight?  No.  Was I happy to be with my wife and son on vacation?  You know it.  I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

As we left the theater and entered the cool, perfect evening for the drive home, we all agreed that it had been a good day.  We started early and ended late and would soon be home to our own beds.  Nothing is better than vacationing in your own bed.  I highly recommend it.