Almost too unreal to be real

I spent the bulk of my day today in the car.  (About eight hours total: four hours driving in one direction, then another four hours coming back home.)   When I left the house shortly after 6 am, I had no idea of all the amazing, kooky, random, bizarre, obscure, and fun experiences I would get to encounter over the course of my long trip. Without further adieu, I present to you: A Very Surreal Day – in four acts.

Act One: What IS It?

I had been on the road for only 45 minutes or so; around 7 am, I saw a man walking on the side of the (very busy) freeway with a dog, pushing what appeared to be a HUGE ‘super fun ball’, painted like a globe.  Seriously.  Look:

As I approached closer, I saw the man a bit better:

At first I thought, “Is this person mentally ill?”  Then I noticed a URL painted on his globe:  Okay, I guess…. I jotted down the website, and decided I would check it out when I returned home.  It turns out the guy is (mostly) sane, and walking for a cause (namely, to bring awareness to diabetes).  But at 7 am this morning, all I knew was that some guy was pushing a big ol’ ball down the road, a cute dog his only companion.  Talk about an interesting way to start one’s day…

Act Two: You’re Not Supposed To Do That

Two hours after seeing worldguy, I stopped at a gas station to fuel both my car and my body.  After getting a cup of coffee, I walked back to my car to see an Amish couple step OUT of a small, old, red Dodge.  The husband had been driving, his wife the passenger.  Um…. As Amish people, you’re actually not supposed to be driving, right?  And yet, here they were, dressed in standard Amish gear, keys in hand, walking into a gas station literally in the middle of nowhere.  It was a genuinely bizarre moment for me.

(And yes, I am confident they were Amish, not Mennonite; and no, I didn’t take a picture, as it is considered offensive and disrespectful to take a picture of the Amish.  So you’ll have to take my word on this one… [but hopefully by now you have a bit of trust in the truth of my words.])

Act Three: Old School Transportation

On my way back home in the early afternoon, I passed by a still-functioning passenger train station – and saw a horse tied to a tree just off the right side of the main entrance.  It totally felt like I stepped into the 1850s – if for an incredibly brief, fleeting moment.

Act Four: My Favorite College Course

Since I was on the road for so much time today, I had the opportunity to see hundreds (maybe even thousands?) of cars.  And yet, within the last hour of my trip, I saw two very distinct cars literally within three minutes of each other:

Seeing each license plate independently made me smile; but seeing them in such proximity to one another made me laugh out loud.

Seriously folks, I can’t make this stuff up!  It’s all quite fun.  🙂


About Stef

A "serious" gal who is trying to remember to lighten up and smile.
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25 Responses to Almost too unreal to be real

  1. What an adventurous day! I was intrigued by the World Guy, so I had to cruise over to his website. There, I discovered he’s from Louisville and lives not too far away from us (or at least he does when he’s not pushing an inflatable ball around our nation’s highways!) Talk about a small “world.” I’m going to bookmark his page to follow his travels, to give myself one more little thing to smile about each day. Incidentally, his dog’s name is Nice. 🙂
    It was very respectful of you to not photograph the Amish couple. Many people don’t realize (or appreciate) that they do not wish to be photographed. That was very considerate of you.


    • Stef says:

      I also popped by the guy’s website and read it a bit (if he were promoting some violent or racist thing I wouldn’t have mentioned him – I don’t intend to help people spread hate…), and I did see that his dog’s name was “Nice” (which I thought was, well, you know) – but I didn’t realize he lived so close to you! And to then learn in your comment below that he’s kind of RELATED to you – wow! *Very* small world! 🙂

      And yes, growing up so close to Shipshewana, I remember a thing or two about the Amish. 😉 I do try to be respectful when I am aware of cultural/social preferences.


      • I’ve seen Non Amish people who gave rides to the Amish and I have also heard of the Amish sometimes driving a vehicle for emergency purposes….I have family in Indiana that are about an hr. or two from Shipshewana, I have gone there a few times with them. I love that place! 🙂


      • Stef says:

        Sharon, yes, some Amish people will accept rides from non-Amish – and some Amish will even use a telephone if it’s offered by a non-Amish. I suppose Amish can also drive in a true emergency situation (though I don’t know how they really know *how* to drive? nor where they would actually get a car?), but the couple from Friday didn’t seem to be in too much of a hurry…. But who knows. Not my place to judge. 🙂


  2. Holy cow! I just found his full name on his blog, and mentioned it to my husband. Turns out the World Guy (Erik Bendl) is the brother of one of my husband’s friends! Small world indeed! LOL!


  3. carlaat says:

    My favorite is the guy with the globe. That’s impressive! Cool day, Stef!


  4. barb19 says:

    A very entertaining day!


  5. Just stopped by the world guy’s blog. What a brilliant way to attract attention for a cause!
    It’s amazing what you see on a journey 🙂


    • Stef says:

      It really *is* amazing what one can see, if one simply keeps eyes open and pays attention to what already is (instead of wanting or wishing for things to be a certain way). If life were the way *I* imagined it should be, it would be MUCH too boring and routine! 🙂


  6. Hanna says:

    I didn’t get licence plate… what about it?


    • Stef says:

      A common joke in the US is to say that a person is taking a college class in “underwater basket weaving” – which is meant to imply something completely frivolous and useless. (Basically, it’s a way of saying, “Why bother? You might just as well spend your time taking underwater basket weaving.”) So when I saw the “H2O” (water) and “BSKTWVR” (basket weaver) in that order, and within literally 2-3 minutes of each other, I was reminded of the above ‘joke’, and I laughed.

      So that’s the scoop. Does it make more sense now?


  7. rutheh says:

    Enjoyed your post today and shared on FB cause I think it is sooooo cool you saw him. What a day you had!


  8. as always, following you around, is a delight!


  9. Touch2Touch says:

    Adventures of Stef On the Road —
    Amazing indeed.
    I wouldn’t have got the license plates — but the rest of the stuff is weird. And fun, yes. But weird. My favorite weirdness: the horse tied up to the tree by the station. I could play with that one for a long time!


  10. Hi Stef,
    You’ve had an extremely interesting day. I hope you compile all of “your adventures” & one day make it into a book. You make me smile as usual.
    be good to yourself


    • Stef says:

      David, today was certainly an exceptionally unusual collection of experiences! And yet, I wonder how many days are actually more like this one – only we people are just too ‘busy’ to see these kinds of days, and fully experience them?

      At any rate, I’m glad I was able to help you smile! 🙂


  11. You most certainly have a knack for finding yourself witness to the extraordinary. Thank goodness you are wise and aware enough to take note of it. 🙂 Love the pics!


  12. Pingback: More than just a bike | Smile, kiddo.

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