Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Bridges of Madison County are in Iowa???

  Really? Back in June we met Granny and Papa in Iowa so the kids could spend a month with them. (How awesome is that???) Anyway, as we were driving through Iowa I saw a sign that said Entering Madison County. Okay. Then a sign that said Covered Bridges Next Exit. WHAT? Really? Iowa? Now, I've never read the book or seen the movie, so that probably puts me at a disadvantage, but I really thought they were somewhere in New England. You know, someplace where you'd expect covered bridges.
  So after we parted ways with our children, my husband bravely set out on Iowa's back dirt roads to find covered bridges for his wife to see. Oh, so sweet! Our first stop, though was to see a Danish windmill in Elk Horn, Iowa. It's adorable. There was even a miniature-sized one too. I just found out that Elk Horn also has a "tiny church" that used to be in the running for the smallest church, and I'm bummed that we didn't get to see that! Oh well, they did have this railroad car and station in town that apparently used to be a flower shop. Cute.
  The windmill was easy to get to. The bridges not so much. We had a map, but you have to follow all these unmarked roads to get there. There was an occasional sign, but not at every turn, so we eventually got lost. That's always fun! Finally we arrived at the first bridge. It was not exactly what I was expecting. It was a big red box and you couldn't drive on it. It was cool though. I've never seen a covered bridge before except in pictures. Why do you think they covered them anyway??
  Although there are like 6 or 7 bridges there, we only saw 3. We were way behind on time. One of the bridges is located in the town of Winterset, which we discovered was the birthplace of John Wayne. The hubs was excited about that! His house had something like 4 rooms; it was tiny. The park where the second bridge was located was very pretty. It had this amazing stone bridge and an English hedge maze which was fun. The last bridge was on our way out and I about jumped out my seat when I saw that we could drive over it! That makes it way cooler! So we ended on high note and only about 3 or 4 hours behind schedule. :)

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