Day 31

Trip Start Apr 23, 2007
Trip End Jun 11, 2007

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Flag of United States  , Nebraska
Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Day 31

Greeting to all,

Last night was a real adventure. We almost were not in Kansas any more. A severe storm came up from the southwest with small tornado's touching down. We were on severe storm alert until almost 11:00. Dirinda was able to get Lassie under the motel portico so the hail couldn't do damage. They were calling for possible golf ball to baseball sized hail. The largest we saw was about the size of the end of my thumb. The lightning was everywhere but little thunder. The rain came in torrents and the wind was close to 70 mph. The motel sustained substantial roof damage but it looked like it was pretty shoddy construction in the first place. We are safe and out of Kansas. Been there done that don't need to do it again!

This morning we visited old Fort Hays. It was a post civil war army out post to provide protection for settlers moving west as well as a supply station. This was not a stockade type of fort construction but more open and spacious like modern bases. Several of the original buildings are on site. We were escorted through the junior officers quarters. Two families would share the homes. There was a parlor on each side of the entry, one for each family. The dining area and kitchen were shared. There were two bedrooms upstairs, one for each family. "Me thinks it was the first form of birth control!" They had side-by-side outdoor biffies one side for each family.

We then headed for the Nebraska panhandle. We made a stop at the Cottonwood Ranch, which is a state historical sited. Unfortunately the volunteer was not on site so we didn't get any real first hand information. The founder was John Pratt who immigrated from Ripon, Yorkshire County in England. The ranch is laid out like a typical Yorkshire farm with stone walls for fences and building connected by those fences.

It was then on to Nebraska and away from tornadoes, wind and hail.

Love to all.

Shawn, Dirinda, Jan
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