The Don Q Inn with a Twist of Goose

To continue on with the travelogue of a goose, we left Grandview and headed up the road, around and around through detours and through the rolling “driftless” land of southwestern Wisconsin until we reached the village of Dodgeville.

We were famished and nearly faint with hunger.

We stopped at a Quik Stop and asked an elderly couple where was the best place to get a dinner in Dodgeville. Figuratively speaking, elderly people usually know the diners in town.

They gave us the classic reply:

“Well….you go back up town there a ways, about three blocks to the light and take a left if you want some barbecue food and live music… That’s Bob’s Bitchin’ BBQ.” The old people actually said the “b” word…

We shook our heads.

“Oh well….then there’s Sam and Maddie’s on your way out of town. That’s right next to Don Q’s Inn, you know that place with the big ol’ airplane parked right out front. Good steaks there and nice family place. Can’t miss it…..just up this way, take a left, take a right past the gas station…”

Well, for gooseness sakes, that sounded interesting to Mother Goose and her dear Gander — hunger will drive you to eat even at a place with a big ol’ airplane parked right out front.

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“Unique in All the World”, the Don Q Inn is actually one of those scary “theme” hotels with rooms bearing these names:

Jungle Safari
Sherwood Forest
cupid’s Corner
Casino Royale
Arabian Nights
The Cave
Caesar’s Court
Paradise Cove
Up, Up and Away
Shotgun
Swinger
Mid-Evil

Nearly all rooms are decorated just as you’d imagine with mirrors on the ceiling, heart-shaped whirlpools or 300 gallon copper cheese vat bathtubs. Yes, 300 gallon copper cheese vat bathtubs.

The Steeple Room is obviously on the right...

The Steeple Room is obviously on the right…

So we made our way through the lobby of the Inn and into the secret passageway to the Sam and Maddy’s Restaurant which, of course, is in the barn of the estate because this is Wisconsin after all.

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Hungrily licking the menu, we devoured a basket of deep-fried dill pickles and for our entre, we finally decided on the porterhouse steak with double-baked tater for the dear Gander and some deep-fried walleye for the Goose. But we soon found that what’s good for the goose is not necessarily good for the gander in this instance…

The steak was quite delicious I was told — aged and grilled to perfection. However Mother Goose took one look at the “walleye” and realized that I had been duped once again! This was no fine northern Wisconsin fresh walleye, batter-dipped and deep-fried, but just a plain old oven-baked catfish.

HONK! HONK!!

But you know Mother Goose….not one to complain about a meal or make a scene about a fish mistake. I politely picked at it a little. When the young server asked how everything was, dear Gander asked her what kind of fish she had served to Mother Goose, and she brightly chimed in that it was a walleye.

But Mother Goose knows it was not a walleye. Mother Goose is from Minnesota for gooseness sakes — land of 10,000 lakes and over 10,000 fresh walleye caught daily.

We left Sam and Maddie’s dining room in a huff when we had finished our meal. And then we noticed another secret passageway — this one leading UNDERGROUND!

"Just walk this way, Mother Goose."

“Just walk this way, Mother Goose.”

Oh the dreadful smell, the horrible despicable sights within that “tunnel of despair”…

WHAT?

WHAT?

"Don't look behind you, Mother Goose!"

“Don’t look behind you, Mother Goose!”

"Get me outta heeeeere now!"

“Get me outta heeeeere!”

Whew!

You won’t want to miss the next episode in the travelogue of Mother Goose where we check into The Silver Star Inn (for the third year in a row).

The Goose Goes to Grandview

This past weekend, Mother Goose and her dear Gander made the annual pilgrimage to Spring Green, Wisconsin to commemorate their wedding anniversary. Along the way, they discussed many items they had forgotten to bring along with them, including the drops and ointments for the eyes of Mother Goose AND the list of suggested attractions to visit whilst they were in the area. Of course, these were the attractions which were suggested by Mother Goose and not necessarily the attractions approved by her dear Gander who had secretly loaded his golf bag into the trunk of the Goosemobile…

As they drove nearer and nearer to their destination, Mother Goose suddenly recognized the name of the town of Hollandale. She remembered that one of her many desired attractions was a place named Grandview, just outside of Hollandale. Dear Gander looked slightly hesitant as she directed him to the quaint little folk art and touristy location, but happily obliged when he saw her beaming face upon their arrival.

The sign simply says it all...

The sign simply says it all…

Mother Goose quickly leaped out of the car, nearly falling down in her excitement. She grabbed her Coolpix camera and sprinted towards the entrance to the park — dear Gander close behind her.

I'm sure the suspense is just killing you right now...

I’m sure the suspense is just killing you right now…

Here are the wondrous sights which met her eyes!

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The inventive genius creator and artist of this space was Austrian immigrant, Nick Engelbert, who came to Wisconsin with his beautiful Swiss bride in 1922. He began creating these amazing concrete sculptures in the 1930’s as he recovered from a sprained ankle. By the mid ’50’s, his yard was completely filled with these whimsical characters. His home and workshop are made of stone and concrete, covered with glass mosaic tiles and scraps of broken bottles in all colors.

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It was a mythical place, a mind-blowing attraction. Aren’t you glad that my dear Gander stopped there?

Are you wondering where Mother Goose and her dear Gander went for dinner that night? You must return for THAT interesting story…

Mother Goose Goes into the Shoebox

Sometimes when a goose gets older, she forgets. She may forget what she had for dinner the night before; she may forget her children’s names; she may forget that she writes a blog. Hence my lapse in storytelling for the past few days…

Going back up to Wisconsin for one last story.

On our way home, merrily driving through the village of Black Earth, we saw this:

Oh how nice! A shoe store!

But then we saw other things.

Not just an ordinary shoe store…

My brother goose wears Red Wing boots, but this one would probably not fit him.

They must certainly have giants living in the black earth here.

And then this…a very thought-provoking image indeed. Are the boots disproportionately big or is the white stallion very small? Hmmm….

Well, of course, we stopped the Goosemobile and went inside. The interior of the store was a virtual shrine to The Shoe. This was truly the largest shoe store in the midwest, and we were duly impressed. Mother Goose dropped her camera at this point and just went dashing about like a mad goose. Every single shoe label was represented under one roof — all of my favorites were before me! How could I possibly choose just one pair? Every size and every shape — every foot could be dressed here, even my big old rubbery and webbed feet could be covered at The Shoebox.

Husband Goose found a nice pair of Florsheims to impress his feet and his clients alike. He also found socks. And some shoelaces.

Mother Goose ran in circles, flapping and honking at all the prime choices before her. Should she try on this one? Or that one? This color or that one? Flats or heels? Mocs or sandals? Boots or running shoes?

Omigooseness, TOO MANY CHOICES! Mother Goose had an anxiety attack and left the store with no new shoes…

So sad for Mother Goose…

We thank God for the “world wide web” and for the “internet” where we can shop at The Shoebox from afar. Blessings on your day today, dear and gentle reader. Stay cool. Drink lots of water. Please pray Zane’s family and friends.

The Gooses Enjoy a Picnic In The Cemetery

Mother Goose and Husband Goose have established a new tradition for celebrating their wedding anniversary! For the second year in a row, we’ve rested in the sweet country air near Spring Green, Wisconsin. The rolling hills and valleys remind us that we live on a lovely planet — not just in a suburban rectangle of lawn with a house on it.

We spend most of our days in Oak Park where the brilliant architect Frank Lloyd Wright began his long, incredible career as the founder of the Prairie School of Architecture. Everywhere we walk in our village we are reminded of his vision for organic architecture. Mother Goose is also intrigued by his scandalous personal life…

Arriving up north on Friday afternoon and needing to rest from our three-hour drive, we promptly set up a picnic in the cemetery of the Unity Chapel. Many of Mr. Wright’s Welsh ancestors are resting here as well. Mr. Wright himself was once buried here…

Resting in the shadow of the great architect.

Frank Lloyd Wright loved a woman named Mamah Borthwick Cheney. Oddly enough, she was the wife of one of his clients in Oak Park. She left her husband and two children to spend the rest of her days with Mr. Wright who, by the way, was also married and the father of six children in Oak Park.

Isn’t it strange how life goes? And trust me, Mother Goose knows all about these sorts of unfortunate circumstances…

So Mr. Wright built his dream home, Taliesin, on the eyebrow of a hill on the 600 acres of the family property. He brought Mamah to live with him there one hundred years ago. They had a love story that rocked the world in many ways, but life was good at Taliesin. It was a rich, creative time for his work. But tragedy fell hard in 1914, when a disgruntled employee set fire to Mr. Wright’s beloved home and murdered Mamah. Several other people, including her precious children, also perished in the blaze.

He personally laid her to rest in the family cemetery.

Mamah’s final resting place.

A majestic white pine tree grows near her now.

Mamah’s tree.

Please come back for the next story of Mother Goose where we doze off during the Twelfth Night.

Did anyone see where I set down my bottle of Santa Marguerita?

Important Stats for a Goose

  • 63,327 honks to date

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