Friday, August 12, 2011

Trip to Iowa Part 3: Allison,Iowa, The Emerald Door Inn, and the Wonderful Ladies from the AMVET Hall

Welcome to Allison, Iowa a little bit of heaven on earth! A normal person, when faced with the prospect of finding multiple rooms for family members, would broaden the search to larger towns than one boasting only one small motel. I, being mostly normal, did just that especially when my son informed me that the Inn in Allison left a lot to be desired. I started in Waverly and branched out towards Waterloo but something kept drawing me back closer to the Hart reunion site. I finally called the only place in town, the Emerald Door Inn(formally the Crest Motel that my son was familiar with). I was assured by the owner, Randy Moad, that they had redecorated and that the place was clean. This is always a plus. I was charmed by this down to earth Innkeeper who had taken over the old Crest Inn and booked several rooms. Added plus was the price was excellent and it was really close to wedding central. I have stayed in Westins, Hiltons, Sheratons, down to LaQuintas and Red Roofs and I swear none has had the atmosphere and calmness that the Emerald has. Plus you can sit outside your room and look at cornfields and watch an occasional car go by while you are in your PJ's. With your hair in rollers. Without makeup. Just picture me sitting outside one of the W's in New York in my jammies with my big ole' rollers in my hair, smoking a cigarette and reading my kindle.... they would cart my crazy country butt to Bellview and lock me up. When we arrived the office was open, there was a note with our room keys on top and a card to fill out with our check in information. There was also a sign letting us know that we could call if we had a problem. Again I was charmed. Our rooms were as stated, very clean. The beds were great and we had a full kitchen. There is a caretaker who comes to change towels and sheets if needed. He also takes the time to sit down and discuss politics. I did see a spider but it was minuscule compared to what crawls around here in Louisiana.I took this picture of Randy just as we were leaving. See the smile. Probably because we were leaving and his life could return to normal. We changed rooms, moved people in and out, changed reservations at will and he never lost his cool. We booked the whole place and needed to shuffle people around a bit till we were satisfied. I just took the cue from him and left him notes: Pam is not coming but the preacher and his wife want her room.... Patti is staying with Barbara tonight but will be in her own room tomorrow...Ruth has a reservation but she will be rooming with Barb because JR and Deanna need her room.... oh and bill us for that room.... you get my drift. He was gracious and accommodating to all of our craziness.Stan woke up Thursday morning before me and went out sightseeing. He was hungry and followed a tip that the AMVETs were serving breakfast. He went in and talked to a few people, ate his breakfast THEN came back to the Inn and woke me up at the ungodly hour of 7am offering to buy me breakfast. He took me to the hall and I ordered and ate one of the BEST breakfasts I have had in a long time. I was so pleased that I went back and woke my sisters up and we carted them back to get their breakfast. Apparently the local cafe closed down and the breakfast slack was taken up by the AMVET ladies!! They served breakfast 6 days a week. We went back Friday and Saturday, each time bringing more people with us. The AMVET Ladies knew Kenny Hart and one of them told me that Vernon's wife was her teacher in school(I hope I have that right!!)
Meet the lovely ladies of the AMVET hall: Ms Gail, Ms. Alice, and Ms. Annabelle. If anyone gets an opportunity to be up in the Allison area for breakfast tell them we said HI and that Shoneys, Cracker Barrel, and Bob Evans restaurants can't even compare to the wonderful breakfasts that we were served by them!! Oh and leave a tip. A. Big. Tip. They deserve it.

Stan deserted us and sat with the local men. He really had a good time.

After eating each day we drove around town. To the Allisonites... you have a beautiful town. It's peaceful and it smells good. People smile and ask about you. We ate at Lil' Ricky's on Saturday night( which was fun plus had great food) and two people came up and said "aren't you the people stayin' at the Emerald?" At least they didn't say are you the crazy lady with the big hair rollers sitting outside your room at the Emerald smoking and reading... in your PJ's? They were honestly curious about how we liked the place. Randy we gave you an A+ and they seemed pleased letting us know that you had "changed it all around".

I will miss Allison, Iowa and can't imagine I will ever find myself your way again unless my son and new daughter-in-law, Joshua and Sydni Hart have a child and have him(or her) baptized in the Westfork. I just may push for that.

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