Let me start by explaining the situation. I'm a Mormon. There are several places to which Mormons are inexplicably drawn. Places we feel a need to visit if we happen to be in the area for some purpose. Places like Kirkland, Ohio, and Salt Lake City, Utah that have some historical interest to us. Nauvoo, Illinois is one of them.
I have to admit, in all the years that I've lived here in Wisconsin, not once has my family visited Nauvoo. We're so close, we really should have, but we haven't. Actually, I guess we did visit it once when I was very young, but that was long ago, and I don't even remember it. Since I have never, in my memory, visited Nauvoo, I didn't really know what to expect. It sounded kinda boring, at first, as I anticipated there would probably be many long and drawn out tours of historical buildings, and that it would just not be very fun. On the other hand, however, I had heard from people that it was fun, so I wasn't sure at all.
So we set off on our journey on Wednesday, July Third. It was going to be about an eight hour drive to Nauvoo, which didn't sound terrible, as we usually drive to Utah, in at least eight hour hops. Little did I know.
About two hours into our expedition, Mom decided to stop at a shoe store in an outlet mall. I needed shoes too, so I didn't grumble too loudly. It turns out that they didn't have the right shoes for me, but Mom and Brica got some.
Another forty five minutes found us at Gurnee Mills. Logan and I were protesting loudly at this time, but we got outvoted, two to two. That didn't seem quite fair, but Mom used the argument she always uses; "Let's add up ages".
After several hours of boredom in clothes stores, we finally got to the Rock Shop. That store turned out to be very interesting. They had everything from stone necklaces to incense, to geodes, and a great many things that don't even fit between those. Pretty much everything in that store, I liked, and most of it was really rather inexpensive. We spent more time, I think, in there than we did in the clothes stores, so I guess I can't complain. I got several gifts for my family in there, and I'm pretty sure my family got all my gifts from there. I never actually saw them buying any of my gifts, but I got the idea that they did because they kept on sending me on meaningless tasks like keeping an eye on my brother in the toy store, when he's certainly old enough to entertain himself without my supervision.
After Gurnee Mills, we drove a couple hours and then stopped at 'The Cracker Barrel' for dinner. The food there was pretty good, though it took a long time to be served. By the time we finished dinner, it was getting on into the night.
Being nearly my birthday, my family gave me back seat so that I could stretch out and read or sleep. I did so, so I wasn't truly awake till midnight as my sister and mom were...
At midnight we arrived at Nauvoo, and sought our hotel. We were a bit worried that they would have given away our room, though we had reserved it. Mom went in to the main office, and stayed there so long, we thought for sure that they had given away our rooms, and were perhaps trying to find us somewhere else to sleep. Finally Mom emerged, and told us that the owners were Mormon also, and had been telling her all the sights we should see.
We found our room, and to our great delight, it was very clean. In our annual trips to Utah, we've stayed in many hotels. Some of these have just been terrible, so we've come to fear all hotels, to a certain extent. In our AAA TourBook, this hotel only got two stars, so we were slightly nervous. It turned out to be great, though.
In the morning we packed up, and went to see the sights. The historic section of the town has been rebuilt and preserved, and they give tours of many establishments and homes. Before going on any of these tours, though, we took a horse drawn tour of the basic elements of the town. That was fun, and after that we went to the brick making building. At that time I had a notion of how one would go about making a brick, but now I know for sure. There were one or two steps that I would have never thought of.
After that we headed over to Brigham Young(our second prophet)'s home. This was far less interesting than the brick making building, and our guide kinda went off on some tangents, not all of them interesting ones, and we had to be standing throughout the whole thing because he got off on all the tangents in one room, and it had no chairs. Oh, well.
After that we headed home. The trip home went far faster than the one down because we didn't stop at any shopping centers. Phew. At dinner time, though, we did stop at an 'Apple Bees'. Our food here came quicker than at the Cracker Barrel, and was a bit better too.
From there we drove straight home.