Grampa Bill Index

Travel in the USA Index

First Days in SF

Street People

Going to Colorado

At My Sister's House

Going to Chicago/Michigan

East Lansing - 1

East Lansing - 2

Goodbye Michigan -
Hello Chicago & KC

February 14-17, 2012 (train to Chicago-Kansas City, Life in KC)

Dear Students,

I am on the way back to San Francisco and then to China. You are back in school now and
I will return to Jinan by February 26 and will have class starting on the 27th & 28th.

I have asked you, my close friends and the student leaders to share my emails with ALL our classmates. I did not stop working for you during the winter holiday - I have put in lots of time on your education so I hope you will pass these emails on to your classmates. We are ALL teachers and learners at Shandong Sport University both in class and out of class.

Mike Miller (my former director at Michigan State University) comes to see me off on my trip back to China.
Wendy Lygas (my former landlady) seems very happy to see me off she forwards mail for me. We have been good friends for several years.

The train has a snack car where you can buy quick meals, drinks, and snacks. I am sitting in the snack car. Each train car has 3-4 very nice, clean toilets with toilet paper, paper towels, and tissue to use. This must be heaven on earth.
This church reminds me of the one in Jinan. We pass through farm land and wood lands, and small rural cities. The trees are growing wild and not in order like trees in China. There are wild turkeys, deer, hawks, foxes, and other animals as we crawl along going to Chicago. I will share many other pictures when we have our classes this semester. Be prepared with questions.
I spent 3 hours in Chicago waiting for the train to Kansas City. I put my bags in a locker and go for a walk around the station block. There is the East River that goes through the city, lots of tall buildings, and people all around the station. I visit with many of them and tell them about China, my job, and my dear students.
Then it is back on the train to Kansas City. We cross the great Mississippi River that divides the USA between East and West. I meet a gold miner named Ralph. He is the same age as me, smokes, and drinks alcohol. We drink a bottle of wine while sitting in the observation car. We swap stories of a life time he knows I am a character and I know he is a character. He was staying with his daughter for a while until he over stayed his welcome. Now he was heading West to Arizona to do some more gold mining. Good luck Ralph – I only drank a little with him because I was going to stay with my friend Jeannine in Kansas City and I didn’t want to drink so much.
Jeannie has a three story house that has several spare bedrooms. I have known Jeannine since 1995. We both do work on the WWW and have a lot of common interests. She has a 31 year old son who has studied artificial Intelligence and is still not married. Jeannine collects books and has a house full of books, movies, art works and all kinds of collectibles. She introduced me to Laura Way many years ago and I designed a website for her. Laura sells dollhouses and miniature collectibles. I still have her as a client. We visit her store.
Jeannine takes me to several book stores and we buy some books, and I get a map to hang in my room. In Kansas City I go to a company named H&R Block and a lady named Kathleen helps me do my taxes for the USA government. Next summer her and her granddaughter will travel to China so she snd I have a good visit and we exchange email addresses. Maybe I will see her in China.
The last evening in Kansas City Jeannine and I eat BBQ ribs. KC is famous for bar-b-que ribs it certainly taste good just like pigu. After this meal, I get on the train to go to Los Angles and then San Francisco.
Next issue maybe my last. I take a two day train ride across the south part of the United States - Kansas, southern Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, and finally to Los Angles and the up the coast north to San Francisco. This is a very warm part of America with lots of Hispanic people.

typical American breakfast


More later,