Note: When Sharon adds comments, they will be in {curly brackets}.

(Trip Part 1, wherein sister Shirley and husband Jerry aren't here yet).


Day 3. Friday Sep 11, 2009. Salt Lake City. The State Fair. Jerry and Shirley Arrive.

My digital voice recorder, or DVR, has four folders, each of which can hold 99 messages. I switch to Folder B to start a new day.

Sharon goes over to the showers and comes back oohing about how wonderful it is. {Great hot water so that I can stand there all I want. We use the RV park showers rather than the one in our trailer as the trailer water presure is usually low and the shower just "dribbles" on you.} I go over, get all set up, turn on the water, and the handle is interesting. It SAYS hot water is to the left, and cold to the right, but, get this, the handle will turn round and round and round in either direction. There are no stops. Like an infinite bus ride. I decide I just didn't wait long enough, so I set it 45 degrees to the left of straight up and wait two minutes. Nothing.

Which reminds of a joke, so time out. A guy walks into a bar and sIts down, ordering a drink. The bartender notices he's upset and says, "Is something bothering you?" "Yes," says the guy. "Three months ago, a cousin died and left me a hundred dollars." "I'm sorry to hear that," says the bartender. "And two months ago, another cousin died, and left me three hundred dollars." "Incredible," says the bartender. "Two family members in two months". "And LAST month, my great aunt died, and left me five hundred dollars." "Unbelievable," says the bartender. "I am SO sorry, I see why you are upset" "I know," says the guy, "THIS month, NOTHIN'!"

Still no hot water. I put my clothes and shoes on, and exit the stall. A uniformed man is cleaning the counter. "Is there no hot water, or do I just not know how to work the shower handle?" He says, "We've got two big boilers. I don't see how we can be out of hot water." Just then the door to the shower stall next to the one I was in opens, and a Swedish accented voice says, "No hot water. Brrrrrrr!" "I'll talk to Fred", says the workman. "He'll take a look at it." He leaves the room to find Fixit Fred. The Swedish guy, with his head still sticking out grins makes a muscle and says, "Strong man," obviously referring to the fact that a Swede doesn't mind the cold water. "Weak man," says I. "I'm waitin' for the hot water." He closes the door, gets into the water and I hear him burble, "STRONG MAN."

I go back to the trailer, and we decide to go to the Utah State Fair, "right next door." As we exit the trailer, I see the shower cleaner guy. I say, "Has Fred found the problem?" He says, "Yes, a valve was closed that was supposed to be open." Grrrrr. And now I'm going to the state fair in need of a shower. Oh well, we'll visit the pigs first, then it won't matter.

We walk up the half-mile or so to the right-next-door fair, cut through a parking lot, cross a bridge over a nice stream, admiring the mallards and geese, and pay our $4 each to get into the fair. It's about 11 am, and things are pretty quiet to our left, at the carnival, but the animals are having a great time talking to each other.

We go into the Swine tent first.

Four little piggies, dreaming of a nice breakfast of eggs and milk, hold the bacon.

Next are the sheep. They have just shorn these guys and don't want them to get dirty before judging, hence the coats.

I guess the extra hole is there in case a random sheep here or there has three ears.

Yeah, but it's gonna take two of you to get me outa this barn.

We loved the sign on this trash container. I LIVE for stuff like this. Don't put your normal trash in here.

This girl is giving her calf an extremely close shave between the legs. Guess she never heard of waxing.

This is called a pack goat, but I'm not sure if that's its breed, or its function, or both. Anyway, he's incredibly horny.

La Mancha Goats

I had never heard of this type of goat before, but we watch the judging of these three. The white one got the top mark. We heard that she will star in a new play Off Broadway called The Goat from La Mancha. Get it? This breed is called La Mancha. And they have no ears! "I SAID THEY HAVE NO EARS!"

The La Mancha would have the advantage over narcoleptic, or fainting goats (who instantly fall asleep when startled). When the earless La Mancha hear a loud bang, they say, "Wha-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-t?"

We tour the carnival then, so I can get some cotton candy, but they don't open till noon. Heck, they don't even have pineapple whips, featured at the Missouri State Fair. Oh well. {So Bob makes do with a traditional corn dog and I get a "foot long" dog which I can't eat all of.} We sit by the man with two dozen chain-saws booth, and watch him finishing up a trout. He's very good.

We watch a cutting horse performance in the rodeo ring, then walk back to the trailer.

Jerry and Shirley will get in about 3:40, so we clear out the back of the pickup, and start to head for the airport at 3:20, about ten minutes away. Sharon's cell phone rings just as we're leaving, and Jerry says they are on the ground. Excellent. {We head out and wait for their call in the "park and cell phone lot".}


(Begin Part 2. The Part Where the Four of Us Are Together)

At the airport, we do that thing people do when they haven't seen each other for a long time. Everybody hugs, and I start telling man-walks-into-a-bar jokes. We load up their stuff and go back to the trailer.

We have cleared several spaces out for their stuff in the trailer, and they make the choice to use the bottom bunk for suitcase storage - kind of like a chest of drawers, but in the shape of a lower bunk. Jerry will sleep in the upper bunk, and Shirley will sleep on the couch, folded out to be a bed at night. We have what Sharon calls an egg crate mattress for the couch, plus sheets and blankets, and we have two sleeping bags if it gets really cold.

After a bit, we go to the nearest Costco, at Jerry's request, to buy some ingredients he needs to fix a dish in the next few days. I give my iPhone 3GS to Sharon, but she can't get it to show the street names. Finally, Jerry gets it, and using the male map-reading genes, he gets us there.

We realize we need more small-volume items than Costco will have, so after Costco, we hit an Albertson's and load up. {We want jalapenos and peanut butter, for example, but not in gallon jars like Costco sells.}

After putting away the groceries, and to celebrate Shirley's birthday (today), we eat out at a Chinese restaurant called China Delight. {They were having a special on sushi, two for the price of one as it was their first day of serving sushi. We decide not to be the first people they "experiment"on and order more traditional chinese dishes to be safe.} Great atmosphere and food. Happy Birthday, Shirley. And also to Sharon's mom Gretchen.

We go back to the trailer, and hit the sacks. I have set my alarm for 4:45am tomorrow. We'll have a big day.

Good night all.


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