Saturday 25 April 2009
The Metropolitan - so cute!
We visited Madison Indiana today. It's a tourist town that manages to avoid being a total tourist trap. Lots of touristy shops, but prices are not outrageous, nor is it filled with the kind of vulgar American excess that we've seen in some other places. It's rather pleasant.
There is a nice little riverwalk along the Ohio - nothing fancy, just a cobbled walk and nobody trying to sell you anything.
We were there the day the Hoosier Nash Metropolitan club had a meeting. There were about fifteen of the irresistably cute little bugs.
The Broadway Fountain & The Methodist Church
They also have a killer bronze fountain in the middle of town. It looks like a nice place to retire, at least in the summer months.
And you won't believe the house prices. We found a 5/3.5 gorgeous craftsman in the heart of town. 3380 square feet on a lovely corner lot. Check out the beautiful entryway.
Note the staircase, tall ceilings, wood trim, beamed ceiling in the living room, etc, etc, etc. Full basement. Butler's pantry. Window seat. And get this - $275,000. We were so ready to retire!
The Indiana Wine Trail - Caution
As part of our visit to Indiana today, we also visited a section of the "Indiana Wine Trail". Seems that six wineries in Southeastern Indiana have gotten together and developed a promotional campaign to get you to visit their wineries. They give you a "passport", and it gets stamped when you visit each winery. Visit all six and you qualify for some sort of reward (I don't know what it is - I haven't read it yet).
The Thomas Winery Pub
Well, CVH enjoys wine, so we visited three of the companies on our "passport". They all had nice sites, although each was quite different from the other. Lanthier Winery had a lovely garden area and an attractively designed "wine cellar" (sixteen foot wine racks, two foot thick stone walls, annoying music) where they held the tastings.
Thomas Winery was in a part of town that looked, well, less expensive, and the tasting area was more like a friendly neighborhood pub. The proprietor was a straightforward craftsman kind of guy who probably played in a band. He was a really cool dude. We liked his wine. And his soundtrack - anybody who plays Neil Young's Harvest Moon when I walk in gets my vote.
The Markland Dam
The Ridge Winery sits on a commanding view of the Ohio River and the Markland Locks and Dam. They were very nice people, and gave us directions on how to get back to Kentucky.
The Indiana Wine Trail
But the caution is that if you're driving along the Indiana Wine Trail, you need to watch out for the drivers who might have enjoyed the Wine Trail a little too much. Twice we were behind people who were driving fifteen miles an hour below the speed limit and couldn't stay in their own lane. This is a real problem in a part of the country where the roads are very narrow and there are a lot of blind hills and curves. In the case of the first one, there was a police cruiser behind me who, after a minute or two, went around me and pulled the person over. The second case happened when we left one of the wineries behind a guy in a Mercedes convertible. He and his companion were all over the road and shoulder. At one point he stopped and tried to go up the wrong way onto the Interstate offramp. Fortunately they soon got on another route and out of in front of us.. So if you're driving any of the roads on this map on weekend afternoons, use extra caution!
Friday 24 April 2009
Our new website is up
The new eCommerce website for my company is now available for public consumption. Check it out to see what we do for our customers!
Saturday 18 April 2009
My Garden's Economic Stimulus Plan
The continuing story of the cost of a garden.
The historic Farmington mansion (apparently some good friend of Lincoln lived there) had their annual plant sale today. We got there early enough to score some vegetable plants. While we were picking out our eggplants, squash, basil, etc, we overheard one of the volunteers say "We're going to run out of vegetables." I thought, Yeah, you're starting to catch on.
After Farmington, we went to our local slow food mart, the Garden Gate, and picked up some ready to go food as well as some seedlings. We got several pepper plants, oregano, basil, and an upside down tomato planter with a tomato plant. We'll see how that works out.
Then it was back to the big box hardware store for some more border bricks. Finally we walked across the street to the upscale nursery for some quality landscape plants and a really nice hat. I have been looking for a cheap hat for the last two years and finally decided to buy a good one.
My new hat on another man
- Seedings: $35.57
- Tomato & planter: $18.01
- Border bricks: $18.89
- Garden manure: $7.95
- Insectcidal soap: $12.71
- Gardening hat: $74.19
Of course, the bricks and the hat should be amortized over the life of the garden, but still...you grow your own vegetables for the flavor, not for the money. The Wall Street Journal's resident cheapskate recently had an article (this link may not be current) about how you could save money growing a garden, but I'm not buying it.
Sunday 12 April 2009
How much is that cucumber in the garden?
I never expected to save money by growing my own food - it just tastes a lot better. But this year, I'm going to try to get an idea of what our 288 ft2 garden really costs. I'm not including anything left from last year, nor gas, time, etc, running all over town, nor water.
- Tiller rental - $36.44
- Border bricks & plant hanger - $44.77
- Several herbs, swiss chard, potting soil, and a rose - $68.60
- About 150 onion sets - $2.11
- One yard of compost/mulch - $10.00