Last week we have friends from Canada and California visited and stayed with us for a few days. It was a mini-reunion of sort for my wife and her two friends, since all of them have not been together at the same time for about 20 years. I know Iowa is not really a tourist destination, unlike Niagara Falls and Disneyland area where these people came from, but just seeing old friends was enough for them to come.
Aside from enjoying each other’s company and reminiscing the good ‘ole days, we also tried our best to show them that visiting our place is worth their trip. Perhaps with this photos I can convince you also that we can be a tourist destination too.
We start with our immediate neck of the woods.
We have other visitors too that frolic in our yard.
We also showed our friends downtown Des Moines.
We went and toured the Salisbury House in Des Moines. This mansion was built in the early 1900’s by cosmetic magnate Carl and Edith Weeks, and was modeled after the King’s House in Salisbury, England.
In the great hall is an antique piano. The tour guide even allowed my daughter to play it, after he made sure she adequately cleaned her hands. This old piano’s current market value is estimated to be almost half a million dollars.
One of our favorite place to bring our visitors is to “The Bridges of Madison County,” which was featured in a book and film (starring Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep) with the same title.
We also spent half a day wallowing in a nearby community water park.
Our friends’ visit was just in time for the annual National Balloon Classic festival held in Indianola, Iowa.
We also drove to the nearby state of Minnesota to visit Mall of America. This mall is the biggest in the USA. It is so big it has an indoor theme park at the center of the mall.
With all the walking and touring, it was indeed tiring. But my family and our friends and their family, had a fun time together. Maybe next time it’s your turn to visit.
(*thanks for my “official” and “unofficial” photographers for the pictures)