Well, thats how I believe you say it.
As I continued my trek North, and suffering through another indescribably hot day, I passed through the town of Trempealeau, Wisconsin, on my way to the State Park for the night. Just for the heck of it I stopped at a little motel, Inn on the River, and inquired about the price for a room per night. The gentleman gave me the price, I shook my head, and asked if the State Park was right down the road. He pointed to the right, and said, “It is about a mile down the road. I will see you back here in about 30 minutes.” I thought to myself, “Yea, whatever!” He said he would give me a “good deal.”
I get to the park, and have to “check in” with the Parks Conservation Officer. He gives me the rate for the night and I was stoked! I take the map, drive around the park, find a spot, and drive all the way back to the front. I tell the young man which one I wanted, he takes all my info THEN tells me I have to buy a sticker for my car. THE STICKER COST MORE THAN THE SPOT DID FOR THE NIGHT! Mind you, it is still 100 degrees out.
I head back to town.
The Park Ranger gave me a list of the different hotels in town and when I had phone service again, I called the historic hotel. I asked for the cheapest room they had, and she said $40.00. Good enough! I head in that direction. When the young lady started taking my information, she told me the rooms were upstairs. “No problem” I thought, THEN she told me there was NO air conditioning. WHAT?!? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?
As I am sitting in the parking lot of the third hotel, I call and inquire about a room. I politely say, “Thank-you.” and hang up. I hang my head and walk back into the Inn on the River. The owner, Tim, was checking in two different couples. He looked up, smiled and waved at me. I smiled back. He won! After Tim finished with the other guests he turned to me and said, “Soooooo, hot huh?” “Yes sir, it is!” I replied. He gave me my “good deal” price and I could not refuse. It was a mere $5.00 more than the campsite and I would have Wi-Fi. (And A/C, and a toilet, and A/C, and a bed, and A/C. you get my point?)
After getting all the stuff in the room, I head to the pizza parlor that was suggested to me. Have you ever been to a pizza joint with no A/C? I have. And it was hot, but the pizza was great! After a couple of slices, I head back to my room to grab the camera. The sun was setting on the Mississippi River and I was right on the river.
I am up again before the sun just to find out it was a cloudy morning. Oh well, no big deal, so I start walking to the coffee shop. An older couple was riding along the street on a Gator, watering the flowers that were in very large containers along both sides of the street. I greeted them with, “Good Morning! Too bad you can’t water all the cornfields!” They laughed and said, “The crops are very sad this year. Where ya headed?” “To get a cup of coffee.” I said. They informed me the coffee shop did not open until 7:00 a.m. Okee dokee then. (It’s a small town…)
After a couple of cups of Joe, I get eveything loaded back up and returned the actual KEY to Tim, who was mowing the grass. He told me to come again and that he had left an envelope under my windshield wiper. I thanked him again, got the envelope and started to smile. Written on the outside was, “Thanks for stopping through and good luck on your journey. If you are ever in the area again, you can have the same rate for a room.” Inside the envelope was a gift certificate for breakfast at Mrs. Sippy’s (Get it? Say it out loud.) Now, let me ask you, do you think I would have gotten that kind of treatment at the Sheraton? Yea, me neither! Don’t cha just love small towns?
Walking into Mrs. Sippy’s you will notice a sign that reads, “*Due to the size of our restaurant, we offer ‘communal dinning.’ Feel free to sit wherever you’d like to enjoy your meal, but be advised, others may be joining your table!” YUP! This is my kind of place. I placed my order for the “Lock and Dam-let” and when it arrived I was shocked! This thing was HUGE. This omelet had, grilled diced ham, grilled chopped onions, grilled broccoli flowerets, sausage, sautéed mushrooms and a few hash browns! I’m not sure how I did it, but I made a happy plate.
You will find different salt and pepper shakers on each table. How cute is that?
I left this little town (which I hate to admit I still can not pronounce correctly, even after SEVERAL people corrected me) with a happy heart. I have always felt the friendliest people live in small towns, and so far, they are proving me to be correct.
The best little places you will find, are on the map following the red line![donation-can goal_id=’keep-me-on-the-road’ style_id=’default’ show_progress=true show_description=true show_donations=false show_title=true title=”]