It's the month of May again, and the time of year when frequent trips to Indianapolis signal it is time for the Indianapolis 500 and our family’s traditional back and forth trek to the Speedway. The ritual has morphed through many changes over the years, beginning 40 years ago with Tom’s frequent statement: “When I retire I am going to spend the whole month of May in Indianapolis watching the cars go ‘round'.This will be the last year that working restricts Tom’s presence at the track, and we’ll have to wait one more year to see how that statement plays out!
The month of May activities opened on May 10 with the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis, which was won by Simon Pagenaud. Tom, Micah, and Caleb made a day trip for this big event. Next the 500 Time Trials were held over two days, May 17–18, a much shorter time span than in the past.
Ella drove the Silvermine to Mounds State Park Friday afternoon, met Micah, and set up camp. Tom and Caleb left Van Wert at 11:30 Friday night, arrived at 2:00 a.m., slept for 4 hours and the three boys left for the track at 6:30 a.m. Saturday morning. On Sunday, they repeated the early trek to the track to watch the race for the pole. Ed Carpenter was the last of the nine fastest racers from Saturday to hit the track and used his last lap to knock off James Hinchcliffe. This good hometown Indiana boy sat the pole two years in a row!
My boys won't be bothered with the encumbrance of documenting their day with pictures, but Micah did send me a panoramic view of their seating for time trials. It seems that other race fans do not feel the need to be in their seats by 8:00 each morning!
With a Saturday morning and afternoon on my hands, I took a little trip into a Fry’s – a big electronics store in Indianapolis. I found absolutely nothing that I wanted or needed but had a good time looking at all my options. I hate to admit that the most interesting thing for me in the whole store was when I visited the restroom and had a seat – the notice on the inside of the door took way longer to read than the business that I needed to conduct! I took a picture so I could read the rest . . . later! It all seemed very complicated!
Next up -- 4 days at the track! I'll try to have more pictures to share.
There is no better setting for an Airstream than a deep, woodsy campsite in a remote location in a National Forest or State Park . . . unless it is the front lot, asphalt tarmac of a camping dealership located smack dab in the City of Columbus! Nestled among the Airstream (and SOB) inventory, this is exactly where NOVA set up camp this past weekend! Haydocy Airstream RV, in Columbus, OH, and NOVA forefather Terry came up with the idea of an on-location rally at the dealership to showcase the silver icon and the Airstream way of life! Marketing the Airstream and NOVA combined is a natural -- with Haydocy leading the way in Airstream know-how and sales, and NOVA leading the way in progressive WBCCI membership.
The Haydocy lot was stocked with a flock of new Airstream trailers – everything from 19’ to 30’ and from the Flying Cloud interior to the Serenity make-up. Many were lined up side by side inviting inspection and others were sprinkled throughout the lot. From the front view they all looked pretty much the same!
At first glance, our little trailer blended right in, but it was in fact the only 16-foot on location! Throughout the rally when a customer wanted to view the smallest Airstream, they were sent over to the Silvermine!
You could tell the difference between the Airstreams for sale on the lot and the Airstreams belonging to our NOVA folk by the chairs and decorations giving them that lived-in look.
Just like in the primitive campsites we wandered around the site talking Airstream talk, sharing Airstream savvy, and checking out the new Airstreams on the lot.
Aside from hosting NOVA to camp on their lot, Haydocy also planned an excursion for us -- a trip to and private tour of the Hollywood Casino which was located right next door. We were chauffeured to the casino in a brand new Airstream Interstate motor-coach!
That wasn't the only food-trip that Haydocy had lined up for us. Right on site was their recently renovated 1963 Airstream Overlander, outfitted as a top of the line commercial kitchen -- the Land Yacht BBQ! Our Friday night dinner was a short trip across the parking lot for BBQ pork or brisket!
With our food in hand, we zipped back across the parking lot to a Haydocy meeting room where Tim Maxwell, with Airstream since 1987 (37 years!), spoke to us about the Airstream Dream.
Saturday was a visit from Naomi Rossman, a Junior in Cinematic Arts at the Columbus College of Art Design. About 170 students from CCAD’s nine majors are working to design a new mobile office and living space created from . . . . an Airstream! Naomi mixed and mingled with us, filming as we sat around talking in the showroom and on the outdoor lot.
She visited each of us wanting us to show and tell how we used our trailers, searching for new visions of Airstream use to share with the CCAD project. Airstream will deliver one of its iconic 23’ silver shells to campus to be transformed into the “work and play” space. Those at the “Share the Dream” rally had a bit of input in the process!
But, by far the most memorable part of the rally was being handed the Haydocy keys every night for our own little after-hours "night in the showroom!" Is this what Airstream means with their encouraging new slogan,
We don’t go camping any more . . . we go ‘streamin’ ! The “SIlvermine and His” is our 2016 23' Airstream, and ‘streamin’ is the name we use to describe our adventures. Stream along as we document everything from weekend trips to longer summer excursions and full-blown vacations. You know what they say: if you’re not in an Airstream – you’re just camping!
Tom & Ella Brown