Week 20 – Cleveland, OH

Welcome to the 20th installment of our adventures living in our home on wheels! We’re coming to you today from rainy Cleveland after just coming off a beautiful, adrenaline filled day at Cedar Point yesterday. Ohio will be a quick stop on the map as we continue our journey east, and then quickly south before it gets too cold up here! We’re already seeing the leaves start to change and the days are getting shorter; fall is definitely in the air up here!

Last week we spent a few days comfortably parked on our friends’ farm in Michigan. We were there from Monday until our departure on Friday morning and couldn’t have asked for a better spot to stay for a few days. We got up on Tuesday and did a stationary bike ride in her yard (with some odd looks from passersby), followed by a nice run through the fields where she lives. We then spent the remainder of Tuesday in the Ann Arbor library, as we like to do a few days a week. Wednesday was some of the same, with Heather getting in a swim at the local YMCA and Jim spending his entire day indoors working on the website. We did have a nice reprieve on Wednesday evening when we went to meet up with a friend IMG_20160921_234545from San Diego. Kash is from Ann Arbor originally and she and Heather met in San Diego a few years ago. She has since moved to Phoenix, funny enough, so we’ve spent the past month exploring each other’s home states before both being in Ann Arbor at the same time. We met at a little cantina right near the UofM campus, which meant the area was swarming with college kids. But Kash knew the dj for the evening so we enjoyed some music, a couple of beers and burritos, and some catching up (Kash asked Heather to be a bridesmaid in her upcoming wedding, yay!).

20160922_191949Thursday, we spent all day on Ty’s property working away in Bertha. Jim’s sister, Jamey, is in the process of creating a blog where she will be sharing stories from her home in Guatemala as well as, eventually, her research and teaching resources. We offered to help her with the technology side of the operation so we spent a lot of the day Thursday helping her prepare for the blog’s launch (if you’d like to read some truly incredible writing, including an inspiring story about a lady taxi driver who has lost most of her family but continues to be a light to 20160923_184157others, check out jameyburho.com). We managed to escape the confines of the RV a couple of times, once to go pick wildflowers and fresh tomatoes and later we finished off the evening by having a lovely pizza dinner with Ty, her husband Adam, and their sweet baby Teddie. After dinner, we spent a few more hours working on Jamey’s site before calling it a day (success, her site was up and launched by her target date of Friday, Jim’s mom’s (Deb’s) birthday).

Friday morning we prepped Bertha to be disconnected from the shore power we love so much and prepared to hit the road again. Ty was just the sweetest, she brought us a bunch of goodies from her farm to send us off with…fresh eggs, cucumbers, eggplant, tomatoes, and some wildflowers. We got on 20160923_185925the road in the afternoon headed for Ohio and we decided to make our home for the night in Port Clinton. Thanks to some solid google maps researching, we found a great little parking spot right on a park/marina (these are our new favorite places to park for a night, they’re quiet, pretty, peaceful, and usually no one cares as long as we only stay for a night). It was a nice evening to be by the water, Jim stayed in and got some work done while Heather went down to the water for some yoga and relaxing. Since we had all the goods from the farm, it only made sense that we’d end the evening with some eggplant parmesan and a fresh salad. It was super delish and something we’re likely to now keep in the dinner menu rotation.

We learned from some friends on Instagram that Ohio has islands! It might seem crazy that we didn’t know that, but we decided to come to Port Clinton in order to explore the islands. Unfortunately, as we prepared to do our open water swim, there were some warning of algae and bacteria in the water, so we chose not to swim there. And sadly, due to our tight schedule, taking a ferry out to do some exploring just wasn’t in the cards either. But we still had Ironman training to do, so Saturday we headed to the YMCA for a nice long swim and then set out for a run after some lunch and a quick nap. It was a pretty nice run, though probably not our favorite when we take into account all the wonderful places we’ve been fortunate enough to run in. We found a quiet highway road with some water views and nice open fields and made it back just before sunset (we’re good at stalling long enough that we end up racing the sun).

20160925_160917We had been going back and forth over whether or not we would spend the time and money to make it to Cedar Point while we were up here. Eventually, we decided that we would…everyone says Cedar Point has the world’s best roller coasters, and when will we be back in Ohio anyway?! So Sunday we decided to go for it and spend alllll day running around an amusement park riding as many rides as possible. It. Was. Awesome! Throughout our summer of travelling, we ran into a lot of crowds – kids out of school and everyone out exploring the National Parks for the 100th year anniversary. So being at IMG_20160925_192715Cedar Point on a random Sunday in September was our restitution. It was not at all busy and we were able to ride every ride we wanted with little to no wait – some we even rode twice! Heather couldn’t quite keep up with Jim and he took a couple of solo rides while she watched with a slightly queasy stomach. It was such a fun day and we didn’t leave until they forced us out (a few of our favorite rides – The Dragster shoots you up and over a 420 foot arch at speeds around 120 mph, Millennium Force is a marvel of speed and g-force, and the Valravn is the park’s newest roller coaster that dangles you over a 90 degree angle and then plunges you into a face first dive – Jim rode this 3 times, once with his eyes closed the whole time). Once our time at the park was done (and after Jim killed the enormous spider that tried to hitch a ride with us on Heather’s back), we headed back to Bertha for a quick dinner and some showers. We wanted to get to Cleveland tonight, with a quick stop on the way to dump and fill our tanks. Our plan was to wake up and go for a long bike ride in Cleveland today, however, our plans have been thwarted by the rain. Looks like the bike ride will have to wait until tomorrow, which means we actually got the blog out on a Monday – a rarity!

Signing off from Cleveland, stay with us as we continue our way east this week! Thanks for reading!

Total RV Trip Miles: 8,067

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