Getting used to the diet

I won’t be reporting every day, but I did want to mention how the beginnings of my diet are coming along.  Here is the link to my first declaration of diet post yesterday.

So far it has been OK to have a protein meal replacement shake for breakfast. Take it slow, don’t gulp it and make it last! Yesterday we (Sher is also consuming some of what I am) both had salads, and again today salad was on the lunch menu. In addition to the salad, I also had a small portion of baked beans and some bread and butter chips. Yesterday and today are the first consecutive days when I had only fruits and veggies to eat. Yes, no meat or breads.

Today’s lunch plate

I have been riding my bike each morning and today I took a second ride after lunch. I am fortunate to have a good place to ride: our neighborhood has very little traffic and an official bike trail runs behind our house. Sher and I also have started doing Tai Chi. As soon as we get the hang of it, we’ll be able to do that outside.

So far I have lost five (5) pounds since my pulmonologist’s appointment last week. My blood pressure has also lowered from the readings from last week. I’m monitoring blood pressure, oxygen and blood sugar daily. I feel pretty good, am not overly hungry and am optimistic. I am confident that I’ll be successful.

Hot day at the track

Last Wednesday we went out to the Indiana Grand Racing and Casino  to see what was going on with the day of the 27th running of the Indiana Derby. The Indiana Derby is touted as the premier thoroughbred race in the state. There was a full race card with 12 races and several high stakes races with purses totally nearing 1 million dollars.

The parade of entries

Ready to run…

 

 

 

 

 

Looking at the parking lots and garage, it was obvious that there were tons of people at the facility. We parked in the garage, having to go to the top (5th) level to find a parking spot.

We went into the casino for a bit first. Complimentary drinks and the AC were a draw for sure! Not having a tremendous amount of luck at the slots, we headed to the track. The first floor was packed, with folks at the large bar and at the many tables looking at the screens with tracks from all over. Many were placing wagers with tellers or at pari-mutuel kiosks.

We sat out side for a while, at least there was shade from the building. We stayed for four races, and then decided it was too hot even in the shade. It wasn’t the best time we have had at the Indiana Grand, and headed home to the AC!

It is time to diet

With my blood pressure on the rise, it has become apparent that it is time to get serious about losing weight. My pulmonologist is a champion for maintaining proper weight and has told me about a diet for losing weight.

Looks good, and full of good stuff

His diet: A protein shake for breakfast. A protein shake for lunch. A salad for supper. When he first told me, I thought that’s the diet from hell. Exercise? Yes, I’ve already started riding my bike each morning.

Sher is supporting me 100%. I know I’ll need that support as this will be a drastic change in lifestyle for me. Portions size is going to be a real challenge for me for those times when I have something other than salads. I’ll give updates on my progress every now and then.

New home for an old bridge

By 1870 Shelby County Indiana had 154 miles of new gravel roads. It was time for the county to start building bridges at principle crossings of rivers. By 1880 there were 10 “substantial and elegant” iron bridges  with additional bridges planned each year thereafter.

The bridge’s new home, seeing bicycles and pedestrian traffic only

The Clover Ford Bridge over Buck Creek was constructed in 1889 by the King Iron Bridge & Manufacturing Company of Cleveland, Ohio. The cost of the bridge, Shelby County Bridge No. 13, was $3,384.50. The bridge served many years but was closed due to structural issues in 2011.

Beautiful and sound reconstruction

History board

 

 

 

 

 

Deemed historically important, it was refurbished in 2018 and moved to the Blue River Memorial Park in 2019. It is now part of the Blue River Trail that traverses Shelbyville. USI Consultants was the company that oversaw the relocation of the restored bridge, as well as designing the new Shelby County Bridge No. 219 which replaced the old Shelby County Bridge No. 13 over Buck Creek.

A neat feature at a park

This afternoon Sher and our son and I went on a ‘hunt’ for a Geocache at a nearby park. We had looked it up last night on a map, and there it was! So off we went.

Explanation of how the swale works

This Geocache was not one of those hidden boxes or log books. This one was a feature at the park. We went in search of a Water Quality Bio-Swale. Yes, a feature that is designed to collect pollutants from rain fall runoff.

That’s the swale in the background

It actually looked like an ordinary swale for rain runoff. This one had a more complex design than you normally expect. There was a thick layer of sandy soil in the low part of the swale which filtered any pollutants. A layer of gravel at the bottom surrounded a  perforated drain pipe in which the storm water runs off to a nearby river.

The story of Indiana’s state tree

The swale banks were planted with trees native to Indiana. One of the park volunteers was mapping the location and species of each tree while we were on site. He informed us that there will be individual ID signs on each tree and a brochure with detailed info coming soon.

Visited a local Mexican restaurant

We had heard lots of good reports about one of the newer restaurants nearby. The Cholula Mexican restaurant touts itself as “an authentic Mexican restaurant”. That claim is 100% on target.

Looks like Mexico

Colorful dining room

 

 

 

 

 

 

The decor of the facility is most definitely appropriate for the restaurant. The brightly colored tables and chairs are fun to sit at.  Wall decorations include Mexican items and there are even two large vintage B&W photo murals on the walls. But what counts is the fare.

A cow watches you enjoying chips and salsa

Now that’s a margarita!

 

 

 

 

 

The food is absolutely delicious. We’ve enjoyed authentic Mexican cuisine in many  places in Texas and frankly Cholula is just as good as any we have been to, and better than some! The choices we made were delicious and filling.

Sher’s vegetarian meal

Maj’s chicken & beef burritos w/rice

 

 

 

 

 

The staff at Cholula is a delightful crew providing excellent, friendly and timely service. All staff were wearing masks, and table cleaning techniques were observed to be thorough between patrons. Cholula says it best: “Independent Mexican restaurant from the beautiful city of Cholula, Puebla. Come try our variety of unrivaled authentic dishes and drinks leaving you with a real taste of Mexico.” We couldn’t have said it better.

Even though it is one of a chain…

…the Lincoln Square Pancake House in Greenfield, Indiana is more like a small town  independent diner. This group of 9 restaurants has a fascinating story. The restaurants are scattered around central Indiana, and unlike other chains no two buildings are alike in design nor size. They are the result of decades of hard work of George Katris ,  first generation Greek immigrant who came to North America at age 18, where he bussed tables in Toronto.

Hoosier tradition breaded tenderloin

Yummy waffles covered with goodies

 

 

 

 

 

Fast forward to today, and the Katris family still owns and operates the restaurants. A diner? Yes, in the typical definition of good food and lots of it! Sher and I were told of the Lincoln Square Pancake House by one of the shop proprietors.  We got there at 2:00 PM with an hour to spare. The restaurants, in true pancake/breakfast tradition, open at 7:00 AM and close at 3:00 PM.

Sher and I enjoyed very tasty and very filling meals. We’ll look for other Lincoln Square Pancakes Houses as we travel around Indiana.

James Whitcomb Riley, The Hoosier Poet

“When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck.” We know you’ve heard that saying before. Did you know that is a quote from James Whitcomb Riley, know as The Hoosier Poet? Riley was born in 1849 in Greenfield, Indiana.  His home is preserved and is open for tours.

Riley’s birthplace in Greenfield

Front door signage

 

 

 

 

 

 

Riley was noted for his down home use of dialect that epitomized rural Indiana. He first wrote under a pen name (farmer Benj. F. Johnson, of Boone) for newspapers in Anderson and Indianapolis. As a boy Riley worked as an assistant to traveling patent-medicine hucksters.

Historic Marker outside the home

Riley is famous for his remarkable volume of poems. He wrote and published over 1000 verses. His most popular are “Little Orphant Annie”, “The Raggedy Man,” “Our Hired Girl,” “A Barefoot Boy,” “The Bumblebee,” “Granny,” and “When the Frost Is on the Punkin.” Many of his poems were aimed at children as well as adults.

Have a seat with Mr. Riley, he might share a poem with you!

Riley’s birthplace and the next door museum provide an most enjoyable attraction in Greenfield. Located on the historic National Road (US 40) the home is east of Indianapolis.