Hanging out in the heartland: Delphos, Ohio

Hanging out in the heartland: Delphos, Ohio

We’ve arrived in Delphos, Ohio to visit my step-son (Steve’s son) Matt, who moved out here eight years ago for college and never came home.  He recently purchased an old brick farmhouse on the original Lincoln Highway, one of the earliest transcontinental roadways built in 1912 to accommodate the increasing interest in auto travel.

We can’t wait to see his first real estate purchase and find out all about his plans for the property. We’ll be staying for four days, enough time to roll up our sleeves and give him a hand with some moving in projects, as well as meet his friends and see heart of Ohio.

Delphos is a town of 7,100 located in northwestern Ohio, about 14 miles from Lima, with the self-proclaimed moniker of “America’s Friendliest City”.

It became a major port on the Miami and Erie Canal in the 1850’s, and was the transfer point for multiple railroad lines.  Delphos eventually  became known as a major manufacturing community, spurred by the presence of the railroads and the establishment of the original, historic Lincoln Highway which runs through the town.

It seems as if we have a farmer in the family!  Matt has already started up his menagerie of farm animals with chickens who produce eggs on a regular basis.  Next up are pigs, cows, and we can just imagine that a horse is in the future.

Although the old farmhouse needs lots of work, the lovely plot of land and the vistas of cornfields as far as the eye can see allow the possibilities to shine through!



Driving the ‘ol Tin Can

Driving the ‘ol Tin Can

Heading out early we spent the day crossing Pennsylvania and heading to Ohio, and I got my first chance to drive the ‘ol tin can during this trip.  My two hours behind the wheel were a pretty good experience for me. Although I had driven this RV before, a 24′ Thor Elite motor home,  it was a little of a challenge when it started to rain, and I had to jockey to keep up with the massive long-haul tractor trailers, giant FedEx tandem trucks, car trailers, and just about every type of truck you can imagine traveling on Rte. 80W/Pennsylvania Turnpike.

We’re heading just south of Cleveland to stay for the night. Tomorrow, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and a peak at lake Erie!

“It’s a fast paced life here on the road” from “America Moves by Truck” by Jack Kapanka, our song of the day.


Chicken sausages are really good on a rainy night!

  • Sear in olive oil in a small Le Creuset
  • Turn heat down,  then add finely chopped onions, green peppers and tomatoes (I used all of the veggies that were starting to go bad).
  • Cover and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Serve in rolls, with good mustard and cold beer!  NO grease! Pretty quick and easy.
Cleveland Rocks!

Cleveland Rocks!

Fog, fog, fog.   Lake Erie always has fog, I was later told.  But today is really foggy as we drive into Cleveland and search for a parking lot on the waterfront that takes RVs and buses.  A short walk to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, next to the Cleveland Science Center, in a really nice harbor area.

The Hall of Fame is in an I.M. Pei designed building of cantilevered balconies and ramps, visually stunning. It’s chockful of artifacts like guitars, costumes, lyrics, posters and much more with a nicely designed layout of exhibits and themes. We waited around to catch a 30-minute rockumentary of classic performances by director Jonathan Demme, well worth it!

For rock and roll fans this place is definitely worth visiting. We even found easy RV parking in a lot nearby.

It was hard to narrow down the great images from my favorite rock & roll icons, so here are just a couple of them, punk rock poet Patti Smith and voice of my generation and recent reluctant Nobel laureate, the singer, songwriter and poet Bob Dylan.

Off to Matt’s new farmhouse in Delphos Ohio on the “old” read “original” Lincoln Highway.  Three more hours in the rain were rewarded as the sun came out just as we arrived at his house.  What a place, full of potential and lots of hard work ahead, but set in a beautiful location in the midst of Ohio farmlands.

Our dinner destination was Cabo, a favorite Mexican restaurant of Matt’s and his friend Livvie. A couple of margaritas and Modelos later we headed back to our home in his driveway for the next few nights.  Ahh, the pleasures of RVing – free places to stay with family and friends!

Day One . . . we’re off!

Day One . . . we’re off!

We are OFF finally, after what seems like months of planning. Lists checked, provisions in place, nothing left to chance. Oh, except maybe weather, moods, choices and serendipity!

Head down in my books or on my phone most of the way down 95 till I could feel comfortable with the rattling noises of a ‘tin can’ that is not being driven by me.  Not that I don’t trust my husband’s driving, it’s just that nervous anxiousness that I always feel when I’m not driving and I’m in a new vehicle – be it boat or RV.  “Just take a deep breath, Paula…it will all feel easier soon”

Around Scranton PA I started to feel as if I was some place different, a little slice of our industrial past celebrated at the Steamtown National Historic Park which tells the story of America’s train history. Scranton sits near the meandering Susquehanna River, which amazingly runs from Ostego Lake in New York State to its mouth in the Chesapeake Bay. It’s so much fun to learn new things!

By 5:00 pm though, we had had enough of driving and Moyer’s Grove Campground in Wapwollopen, PA beckoned us.  Not really, but we found it on a camping app on my phone, so off we went, miles and miles and miles off the thruway down into rolling, bucolic farmlands at the foothills of the Appalachians.

We received a warm welcome from the owners, a mother and daughter.  When I inquired about wi-fi, I was promptly told “we ain’t got no Wi-Fi- I’m running a campground not a reeesort!”. Steve and I had quite a chuckle but it really emphasized for me how remote this section of Pennsylvania is, and how news and information that we take for granted and is at our fingertips is so much harder to come by here.  My East Coast bubble needed some bursting!

Getting Organized For The Trip

Getting Organized For The Trip

So many lists, so much to do. Planning for a cross country RV trip is a full time job. But a fun one!

I’m planning to share my lists with you, with the hope that maybe, some day, someone will find them useful. But first I’ll be posting about our travels and then I’ll get back to preparing for the trip.  So please be patient with me, and check back here in a bit.