Sunday, October 5, 2014

My Kentucky Adventure: Downs and Falls

It is such a shame, i thought to myself, that i didn't realize we would be in Indiana!

At 7:45 that morning, as we pulled into the parking lot of the grocery store in town, we were set.  My ice chests were in the back of Cicero, we had packed a picnic lunch, and we were on our way to Churchill Downs.

Script stayed at the resort to rest and enjoy a quiet day and prepare our supper, and the rest of us, Fivecat, Grace, Little_Ninja, Eagle, Blossoming, and this mimi went to see the sights that Fivecat had arranged for us to enjoy.

While i know there is such a race as the Kentucky Derby, and that it is held at Churchill Downs, and that it's fun to watch every year, i didn't know that the Derby itself is a race put on by a certain race club and it happens to be held at Churchill Downs, but they are separate "entities."  This and more can be learned by going on the tour and going through the museum and watching the film in the amphitheater.

We were lucky to get to take a morning tour, as there were horses out being exercised, and we got to watch that as well, and talk to a few jockeys who were willing to stop and answer questions.  There's a lot to see in the museum, and if i ever get a chance to go back, i want to explore the second floor further.

We couldn't stay long enough for me to do that this time because we were going to meet up with Irisbloom, another friend from our online group who lives locally.  Our meeting location was at the Falls of the Ohio State park, and that is in Indiana.  We crossed the beautiful Ohio River from Louisville into Indiana, and met her in the parking area.  She is a writer, and is as sweet in person as i thought she would be.

The Falls is where there are exposed fossil beds from when this area was a tropical sea.

 In other words, i said to the docent, this used to be the Gulf of Mexico!  

"Just about!" was his answer.

The day was sunny and the temperatures had dropped and the wind was so wicked it made one of the metal fences "sing."  Really, this fence line makes a musical tone when the wind cuts through it like that.  It's the kind of briskly cold day that usually hurts me, but i wanted to get out on that fossil bed, and cold wasn't going to stop me.

In fact, it didn't.  Our docent guide led the way to where we had to climb rocks and driftwood and he showed us what to look for in the fossil beds.  It was so cold my hands were numb but nothing could numb the delight in getting right down there on the limestone flats and spotting coral and snail and trillobite fossils.  Going back up was harder to do, as we took a steeper route, but i wouldn't have missed that for the world.

Our picnic lunch plans did pose a problem, as the wind and cold would have made it a miserable thing to try to eat outdoors.  The ranger in charge graciously let us have our picnic in a lookout room in the back of the museum!  We picked up after ourselves and wiped down the tables, and i asked if there was a vacuum cleaner so i could sweep the floor, but the ranger declined, saying she would do that later.

This state park has a really neat museum and a lovely view of the river and those amazing fossil beds, but it does have one problem; if the water pressure goes down, you can't use the restrooms.  We'd just had lunch, and so we had to trek to the facilities at one of the outdoor areas.  It was just like what i've seen at public swimming pools, but at least it's not an outhouse where you have to check for spiders.

Irisbloom's time with us was way too short, as her husband and daughter came to get her just as we were done at the park.  It would have been nice to get to spend more time with her, i really liked her way with words.

Next on the agenda was back to Louisville for a riverboat ride.  Again, the wind was wicked and it was very cold, but i did go stand outside for a while and all of us enjoyed the trip.  Looking down at the river and looking up to the shores from the river are two completely different things.

We got back to the resort tired and happy, and Script had been busy.   Fivecat headed home for a bit and Blossoming and Little_Ninja went to the hotel to freshen up, and when we all got back together at the resort for dinner, it was a delight.  Mr. Fivecat joined in again, and we had a cold Italian meal that nourished the soul as well as the body.

Script thinks of everything, including the wine.  Though i don't normally drink, this wine was a dessert wine that you only drink out of a cup about the size of the ones you have for communion at church.  That much i can have, and it was like drinking liquid nectar.

We spent another evening in laughing and talking and enjoying our time together, and if i weren't so sleepy, i would have wanted it to go on all night.

Today is:

Apple Festival -- Old Prairie Town, Topeka, KS, US (celebrating apples and Topeka's turn of the last century heritage)

Armed Forces Day -- Indonesia (Hari Tentara Nasional)

Blessing of the Fishing Fleet -- there are two that i can find:
     Church of Saints Peter and Paul and Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, CA, US (a blessing is offered on the first Sunday of October each year)
     North Wharf, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town, South Africa (a festival, and Portuguese food, and a blessing from the local Catholic Archbishop)

Constitution Day -- Vanuatu

Do Something Nice Day -- internet generated; make someone's day brighter, it will brighten your own

Erntedankfest -- Germany (Thanksgiving/Harvest fest, on the first Sunday in October)

Festival of the Five Toes -- Fairy Calendar

Festival of Mania -- Ancient Roman Calendar (held to placate the Manes, on dates when it was believed the doors to the underworld were open and the dead were free to roam)

Fire Prevention Week begins -- Canada; US (and a great idea everywhere, feel free to join in)

Great Books Week begins -- previously sponsored by Excellence in Literature; this year, their website doesn't mention it, but it's always the first full week of the month

International African Diaspora Day

International Day of No Prostitution -- information here

Long Walk Day -- David Kunst finished his walk around the world on this day in 1974; go for a long walk in his honor

Most Common Birthday -- US (yes, according to, on average, more people are born in the US on this day than any other; wonder if it has anything to do with today being 9 months after New Year's Eve?)

National Apple Betty Day

National Metric Week -- US (yes, it's no fun to switch; get over it and learn, it's good for your brain!

Noisy Munching Day -- a fun day for kids, or your own inner child; munch chips, celery, pickles, anything loud, to annoy others

Nubaigai -- Pagan Lithuanian Calendar (harvest festival; can't get independent confirmation that it's always on this day)

Pulaski Day Parade -- Philadelphia, PA, US (honoring the Polish patriot known as the "Father of the American Cavalry")

Republic Day -- Portugal

St. Placid's Day

Thesmophoria -- Ancient Greek Calendar (start of a 3 day women's festival of Demeter; date approximate)

Unicorn Questing Season begins -- as established by the late W. T. "Bill" Rabe, get your official license here

World Communion Sunday -- Christian

World Teachers Day -- UN

Birthdays Today:

Jesse Eisenberg, 1983
Kate Winslet, 1975
Parminder K. Nagra, 1975
Josie Bissett, 1970
Mario Lemieux, 1965
Laura Davies, 1963
Michael Andretti, 1962
Maya Ying Lin, 1959
Bernie Mac, 1957
Bob Geldof, 1954
Clive Barker, 1952
Bob Geldof, 1951
Karen Allen, 1951
Jeff Conaway, 1950
Steve Miller, 1943
Vaclav Havel, 1936
Bill Dana, 1924
Glynis Johns, 1923
Bil Keane, 1922
Donald Pleasence, 1919
Allen Ludden, 1917
Larry Fine, 1902
Robert Hutchings Goddard, 1882
Louis Lumiere, 1864
Chester A. Arthur, 1829
Denis Diderot, 1713
Jonathan Edwards, 1703

Debuting/Premiering Today:

"Monty Python's Flying Circus"(TV), 1969
"Love Me Do"(Single release), 1962
"Zane Grey Theater"(TV), 1956
"You Bet Your Life"(TV), 1950
"Secret Service"(Play), 1896
"Orfeo ed Euridice/Orpheus and Euridice"(Opera), 1762

Today in History:

Founding of the city of Concepcion, Chile, 1550
The Gregorian calendar is introduced in Italy and other Catholic countries, 1582
March on Versailles by the women of Paris, 1789
Shawnee Chief Tecumseh killed in the battle of the Thames, 1813
Founding of the City of Anaheim, 1857
Destruction of most of Calcutta by cyclone, approximately 60,000 die, 1864
A strong hurricane devastates the Bay of Fundy region of Maritime Canada, 1869
The surrender of Chief Joseph, after the 1,700 mile retreat, marks the end of the Nez Pierce War, 1877
The first individual time trial for racing cyclists is held on a 50-mile course north of London, 1895
Sir Samuel Griffith is appointed the first Chief Justice of Australia and Sir Edmund Barton and Richard O'Connor are appointed as foundation justices, 1903
First appearance of the Little Orphan Annie comic strip in the NYC Daily News, 1924
Suffrage is extended to women in France, 1944
The 1948 Ashgabat earthquake kills 110,000, 1948
The first documented recovery meeting of Narcotics Anonymous is held,
1953Dr. No, the first in the James Bond film series, was released, 1962
The first episode of the famous comedy show Monty Python's Flying Circus aired on BBC, 1969
Signature of the European Patent Convention, 1973
Raoul Wallenberg is made an honorary US citizen, 1981
Marc Garneau becomes the first Canadian in space, aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger, 1984
The first official version of the Linux kernel, version 0.02, is released, 1991
The Bulldozer Revolution begins in Belgrade, eventually leading to the resignation of Slobodan Milosevic, 2000
A new, though threatened, language known as Koro, is discovered by a team of linguists on an expedition to Arunachal Pradesh, in northeastern India, 2010


  1. Sounds like a great time (and what a kind Ranger!)

    I'm not sure about Unicorn Questing - Sounds a bit unfair on the beasts to me!

  2. Oh my dear, it sounds like someone else has a way with words also! I feel as if I was on that trip with you, right down to that sweet little glass of wine at the end of the day!
    Do Something Nice Day...that should be every day!

  3. Do you make up their names? Do you all have nicknames?

  4. such a nice group you have and great outings planned, too!

  5. I'm getting exhausted just reading all that you're doing. What a great time you're having. Will there be any pictures?

  6. That was a full day and then some. It was an enjoyable read too. I'm so happy you're having a great time.

    Have a blessed Sunday. ☺

  7. It sounds just wonderful. You know you're having busy, enjoyable days when you're dog-tired at night.

  8. Sorry I missed all of this! I love Kentucky!