Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Today was one of the most successful, productive, and delightful days to date. Helping with a non-profit organization with a guy that couldn’t be nicer, cleaning and fixing up our bikes, helping around the house we are staying in, and finishing up with another great dinner and long talks. This is what it’s all about.

Sleeping in ‘til about 8:00 we felt a little groggy (or just Greg rather) and needed more sleep, but the excitement from actually getting to start the day helping someone on this trip, got us going quickly (it was the 3 cups of coffee and slice of pizza that jump-started Jerry).

Donald D. Findling

Donald D. Findling - We know him!

We had the opportunity to work for a non-profit who have initiated a very big project to remodel and recreate the Porter County Museum, with limited staffing, but led by an amazingly passionate individual by the name of Kevin. This museum contains hundreds of years of history relating to their beautiful city and as we have seen, it’s all quite cool. We even saw a plaque for all the World War II veterans from that city and saw the name of our very own Grandpa Don (Joey and Nate’s grandpa) that we met the first night here!

The museum is going through another renovation and is located in the old County Jail and the building is old and awesome. Unfortunately, we didn’t take many pictures, but we did get some outside with Kevin. It was easy working for Kevin because he was appreciative of everything no matter how small. He said we saved him about a week of work, but this could just be his generous attitude.

We were able to admire and hold many of the artifacts, and even play Cowboys and Indians upstairs when Kevin wasn’t looking (just kidding Kevin). We read a newspaper article about the murder of Abraham Lincoln, viewed historical maps, read from miniature bibles that soldiers carried (about 1.5 inches in size) and learned about the courageous people who fought in WWII.
Upon departing Kevin gave us a piece of the historical building as a keepsake. Thanks Kevin. It’ll go well with the arrowheads and six-shooter we found. (another just kidding). It was a great time and hope we have more opportunities like this in the future.

With Kevin in front of Porter County Museum

With Kevin in front of Porter County Museum

Afterwards, we fixed up our bikes and cleaned them to a sparkle. These babies looked good… for a full 2 hours before it started raining. They still looked the best they have in weeks, but you guys know the drill.

Our hosts also let us help them a bit even though we almost had to pull their legs to do it. We helped prune some branches away and papa bear (Jerry) replaced the water filter. And surprisingly, the water tasted great afterwards.

At the end of the day the girls (Joey and Lauri) cooked us another delicious dinner of hamburgers and dogs with more juicy Indiana corn. After dinner we talked for about 4 hours before crawling into bed and shedding a few tears realizing that we leave in the morning.

There are so many details left out about our gracious hosts, but hopefully we can sum it all up in one word: awesome. We are thankful that this surprise stop was so fruitful and enjoyable!

Any takers want to dare to try and match them!?? 😉