Friday, August 27, 2010

Back "home" in Fremont, IN

Fremont is a little burg right next to Angola,'s a small town with a big heart, population about 3,000 or so.If you were driving on the interstate and got off at Fremont, it would be so easy to dismiss this little town as typical small town America. If you did, you would be missing a little nature's gem in the midst of Indiana cornfields...Despite its small size, Fremont, and it's neighboring city, Angola, right off interstate I-69, have a lot to offer...There are 101 lakes in Steuben County, which encompasses Fremont and Angola. That was one of the attractions that led me to move here back in 2003....Not only the lakes, but there's the Pigeon River, the Fawn River, three nature preserves and two state parks (Pokagon State Park and Chain o Lakes State Park) within a short driving distance..AND, if you need retail therapy, there are the outlet malls on interstate 69, exit Angola/Fremont....I used to kayak quite regularly, and the beauty of the Pigeon River and the Fawn are tough to beat...I have seen bucks on the rivers, a doe leading twin fawns to the river to drink, and many different kinds of ducks, sandhill cranes nesting, and many other sights that I fondly remember.

Would you believe that the little town of Fremont also has a great restaurant called Timbuktoo's, and an award winning winery called Satek Winery, and a super friendly post office that goes above and beyond taking care of their customers as only a small town post office can?  (thank you Cheryl Gleason and staff!)...As I went back and visited old friends today and took care of some appointments, I remembered why I came to this town seven years get away from the hustle and bustle of South Bend and Mishawaka, IN...the endless traffic jams during Notre Dame games, the constant building of malls and mini malls, the disappearing open spaces--all that made me yearn for a slower paced, less stressful life, a greener life in all aspects of the word, and I found it in Fremont...People have different opinions about small towns, some hate them  and their politics and can't wait to get out to find the urban culture, job opportunities and a  busy life that a bigger town offers, some people love small towns and everything about them and want to still raise their families we get older, we are gravitating away from the traffic and stress that accompanied us most of our hard working lives, so we really enjoy seeing smaller towns on our journeys, small towns just seem to reflect a better sense of pride and patriotism, or at least to us it's a little more noticeable ...if you ever get a chance to stop and experience Fremont or Angola, IN, check out the beautiful Ropchan Conservation Wetlands preserve on S.R. 827, going south out of Fremont, one of the most beautiful hikes across two forests, little streams, and a meadow, you can hike a half mile or go a little more than two miles....kayak or canoe on Chain o Lakes---five small lakes connected by water channels, paddle from one lake to the can rent kayaks and canoes there if you don't have your own...swim at Pokagon State Park which borders one of Steuben County's largest lakes, Lake James. Pokagon has a beautiful inn there should you decide to get out of the camper or RV for a bit...(personally, I am missing my daily hot bath at night, but, it's a small price to pay for the life experiences we are having right now...)

It was great to see my friends at Angola Middle School today...but it was also great to be able to go home without having had a stress filled blood pressure is definitely lower since I have retired...I really had underestimated what stress can do to your body, I had lots more aches and pains every day than I do now..'course that's age working on me, too, but really, the aches and pains went away once I extended my weekend relaxation journeys to every single day journeys...teachers have to keep calm under tremendous pressures these' attention spans are not what they used to be, behavior is not what it used to be, and the multiple types of disabilities of kids that both general education teachers and special education teachers work with, make teaching a much more difficult job than it used to be (that's a former special education teacher talking!)...I'd like to thank all teachers today, for coming back to school for another year, for their enthusiasm and desire to reach all kids, despite what kids' home environments might be, despite what's going on in the world today, despite all the pressures that legislators place on schools to test, test and was great to see that enthusiasm very much present at the middle school today......

Wish I had some photos for you today of beautiful Steuben County, my home for the last 7 years...but they have been packed away in storage....Saturday is a visit with Eldy's children and grandkids at their soccer games...we're looking forward to seeing that! I am posting a photo, one of my favorites from the summer, from Acadia National Eldy and I, this is what full time RVing is all about...
seeing God's country

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