Ready to Travel

Ready to Travel

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Cheese and cows

Well yesterday was a lame effort, blogwise as I was pretty pooped and forgot the upload cable in the car so couldn't post photos.
When I stopped for lunch yesterday I jotted down some notes and observations but first - photos of the approach to Chicago.

Sorry for the quality but when you're shooting while driving.....and yes, it was as grey in real life as it is in the pictures. Nothing good on the radio...too much classic rock and not enough new/alternative stuff but the commercials were interesting. There was an ad for free disposable urinary catheters (I kid you not) and a funeral home ran an ad listing who was on the menu for Wednesday (my words not theirs).
My destination was Rockford, Illinois but I got there early and kept driving to just across the border into Wisconsin. WI is a lot like southwest Ontario. Lots and lots of corn fields to feed the cows which make the delicious cheese. Further north it began to look like Barrie/Orillia.

Day 2 I had a great breakfast at the Comfort Inn. They actually had real food - scrambled eggs and sausages, freshly made. On the road by 8:30. Some interesting things I saw today:
:Cranberry bog farms
: large swaths of birch forest - I mean the entire forest was birch
: a Wal-Mart semi every 3 minutes (I'm not kidding, they are EVERYWHERE)
:3 eagles over the highway. 2 were engaged in something - fighting or mating
:a bison and beef cattle farm
: an Oliver corn picker (are you reading this Kevin?)

Then there's Foster's Cheese Haus. It's in a little town called Foster, outside another little town called Osseo and it's right on the highway. It looks unassuming from the outside but stop shopping. Local craft microbrews to take home, locally made wine to take home; two refrigerated cases full of Wisconsin cheese; an excellent menu and a wood fired pizza oven newly installed.  Here's some pics

That's Bob the owner and his dog Cedar. He's a pointer/spaniel and Bob hunts birds with him. Bob installed the pizza oven behind him to attract customers from Eau Claire. Otherwise he depends on the 30,000 cars a day that pass his place on I94 . I arrived at 11:30 and they weren't quite prepared but I only wanted a bowl of soup so Bob and I chatted while the chef got busy. He saw the book I brought in ...The book of General Ignorance, taken from the series Q.I. which I love. When I described it to him he found a podcast on his laptop of a similar show from Chicago and played that in the resto while I ate my lunch. Bought cheese and cheesecurds. You can't leave wisconsin without cheese.
Crazy stuff today - the highways in Wisconsin have letters instead of numbers ie. Highway O, Highway TM and the best song I heard today "My exes live in Texas so I'm here in Tennessee".
Stay tuned.