We entered Iowa at 6:35 and soon arrived in St. Ansgar. This not a particularly impressive town but it is very cute. We are staying at the Blue Belle Inn Bed and Breakfast
. We we arrived our dinner table was already set for two, including wine glasses for our BYOW. We had a really nice meal of "Pancake Soup" and "Cottage Pie" -- both really yummy and not as weird as they sound. We are staying in the "Secret Garden" room which has a billowy, twinkly awning over the bed and pillows, knick-knacks, stuffed animals and little books all over the place. There is a small TV with a built in VCR. There is an admirable collection of VCR tapes upstairs with lots of romantic comedy titles, but I think we're too tired for any movie watching.
We took a little walk after dinner but the mugginess drove us inside. We're getting ready for bed now, hoping that we don't hear any sirens tonight warning us of an impending storm. If that does happen, though, we are told there is a basement storm cellar we can go hide in. That's comforting, right?
More pictures of days 1-2 at http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=192664&id=837899636&l=ac0d02cebf
After Pepin, we got back in the car and headed toward St. Ansgar, IA where we had reservations at a B&B. We decided to scrap the idea of Decorah/Burr Oak, partly because we ran out of time due to our late start this morning, and partly because it didn't seem as essential to the "pilgrimage" since Laura never actually mentioned living here in her books. I did discover, in the same biography I mentioned in the last entry, that Laura chose not to write about the family's time in Burr Oak in part because it had been a difficult time for the family (this was around the time that Mary lost her sight and all where Laura's baby brother Charles died at 9 months old), and in part because she still had to account for the fact that her publishers had made her two years older in the first Little House book, so she really didn't need to include this time period anyway.