Monday, April 30, 2018
Council Bluffs, Iowa, is located on the eastern bank of the Missouri River, across from Omaha, Nebraska. The first thing you’ll notice when you arrive in town via I-80 is four huge, hideous-looking sculptures, on the corners of the 24th Street Bridge. They stand 60 feet tall in some places, and what with their serrated edges, jagged spikes, and spears, they look like the work of Edward Scissorhands. In actually, the sculptures are the creations of world-acclaimed artist Albert Paley. I’ve never heard of him, but then again, I don’t exactly travel in modernist metal sculptor circles. The sculptures are called Odyssey. Personally, I think Oddity would have been a more fitting name. And believe it our not, the city of Council Bluffs paid $3-million for the four-piece metal monstrosity. What were they thinking?
We boondocked in the parking lot at the Horseshoe Bend Casino, sandwiched between a dozen semis. Between the eighteen-wheelers and a five-level parking deck nearby, we were completed sheltered from the high winds. We were thrilled to have the truckers as neighbors. As an aside, truckers are generally the most courteous drivers on the interstate. They will let you over if you need to change lanes, and they know better than to tailgate. I have yet to see a semi whip over in front of us and slam on their brakes the way other drivers do. Big rigs cannot stop on a dime. Unless you have a death wish, please remember that before you decide to dart in front of a motorhome or semi the next time you’re cruising down the expressway.
After arriving at the casino, we hopped in our Jeep and drove to Camping World to purchase a surge protector to see us through our trip. Harry is not convinced our electrical problem on Saturday was caused by our EMS. However, he has decided to wait until we return home to address the issue.
We had dinner at Texas Roadhouse with our good friends, Randy and Debbie. Afterward, we went next door to a fast food restaurant called Culver’s, where Harry and I were introduced to frozen custard. Yum-yum.
The main ingredient that sets frozen custard apart from ice cream is a high proportion of egg yolks. Frozen custard is also churned differently than ice cream, utilizing a process that introduces much less air into the mixture. The result is a frozen dessert with a creamy, dense, smooth consistency that is absolutely delicious. Surprisingly enough, frozen custard has about 10 percent less calories than ice cream. All the more reason to eat it!
The wind moved out early Tuesday morning, and we relocated to the casino’s so-called RV Park. It turned out to be nothing more than a parking lot with diagonal back-in sites and electric and water hookups. It looked like a drive-in theater, minus the speakers. There was a bathhouse on site, but it was, well, filthy. The laundry room didn’t look much better. At least all of the sites were level, and we were close to the casino. We paid $40 a night for our “deluxe” site, and—get this—they charged us a $50.00 per night security deposit. Seriously, what did they think we were going to do? Tip over the Dumpster or whip out a jackhammer and pulverize the concrete? I hate to break it to them, but judging from the number of potholes in the area, I’d say someone beat us to it.
The only reason we stayed at the casino “RV Park” was because the only other campground in town—a city park—was booked up solid. Next time, we’ll bypass Council Bluffs and spend the night in Omaha.