Monday, September 7, 2015

A Visit to the Midwest

We just had a very nice visit from Ted's oldest brother. It almost didn't happen, as his Friday flight was cancelled due to some classic midwest thunderstorms.

He was able to rebook, however, so we picked him up on Saturday and started the visit with lunch at A Tavola Bar and Trattoria in Cincinnati's "Over the Rhine" district. This part of Cincinnati is in the throes of gentrification, however the process is not yet complete, leaving the neighborhood with lots of artistic character and verve. According to the Over the Rhine Foundation, it is "one of the largest, most intact urban historic districts in the United States."

Ted's Pimms Cup at A Tavola

After a delicious lunch of wood-fired pizza and watermelon salad, we walked through Washington Park, where the neighborhood residents were trying to beat the heat with picnics in the shade and prancing in the fountain. I did a little prancing myself, actually, and was disappointed that I wasn't wearing my swimsuit.

A few blocks north of Washington Park is the well-known Findlay Market, which was packed to the brim, so I didn't get any photos. There you can buy all kinds of meat, sausage, fish, cheese, pastries, ice cream, chocolate... I'm glad we ate lunch before walking through. :)

Every empty wall in Cincy seems to be painted

I have to say, the Over the Rhine district has renewed my interest in Cincinnati as a city. Ted and I have only been down to the city 3-4 times, and we were never that impressed. Now, however, I look forward to taking future visitors to this neighborhood for shopping, food, and fun!

On Sunday, despite the lingering heat and humidity, we trekked out to Metamora, Indiana for the local music festival. About 45 minutes from Oxford, Metamora is a very small town (village?) with a more western feel. It is a historic site thanks to the Whitewater Canal, so many of the town's original structures have been preserved. 

Canal boat rides are only $5 and last about 30 minutes. 

The interesting thing about the canal is that horses drew the boats along the water. There were two huge Clydesdales (I think) doing just that while we watched from the shore.

 There is also an old-fashioned train that offers scenic rides, if horse-drawn boats aren't really your thing.

One of the highlights of Metamora, though, has got to be Granny's cookie jars. You can't miss the window displays packed top to bottom with cookie jars, and the inside does not disappoint.

You can buy ice cream at the store, and all of the cookie jars (and salt and pepper shakers!) are for sale, though there were certainly cliental who entered just to gawk.

Salt and pepper shakers

Some of the cookie jars were definitely collectibles with real value, but most were for sale for around $35-$45.

As in most of the midwest, Metamora also has its fair share of antique (and junk) stores. 

I know some of you will recognize these!


 We did actually make it down to the music tent eventually. The heat was pretty oppressive, though, so we didn't stay too long under the stuffy tent. Exploring the town was the real highlight, and I'm glad Ted's brother got to see a little of our area while he was here.

So what do you say? Are you going to be our next visitor? :) 

1 comment:

  1. Better not let your Mom or Barb any where near that cookie jar'll never be able to get them to leave!