Three years ago, my mother and I ventured on a cross country trek in my brother’s Jeep across Canada. We drove west from southwestern Ontario to Vancouver, BC over the course of two weeks, and then down to northern California to meet up with the men in our family. The following are taken from emails I wrote to family and friends.
Day 26: Saturday, August 25, 2012
Today was a driving day. Left South Dakota bright and early, crossed into Minnesota by second breakfast (~9:30 am – I am a hobbit!), and once in Iowa, we took a detour to take a more scenic highway. Pops saw a sign for Mason City and after recalling that he had been there the year before with mom to stay at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Park Inn Hotel, we decided to stop for lunch and for me to see said hotel.
Very cool. I dig his vision. Apparently the hotel is booked months in advance – this does not surprise me. Drove around the ‘hood a bit and saw his Stockman House, as well as other homes designed by his “disciples”. I could live here.
Clearly Frank had a certain aesthetic – also known as the Prairie School style. Sadly, the Park Inn Hotel is the last remaining FLW designed hotel, and the bank is only one of two that were designed by him (first in Iowa! Congrats Iowa). After being commissioned to design the bank and hotel, and while waiting to begin contruction, FLW was contracted to design a small house near the bank and hotel site. Et voila! His “Fireproof House”* vision came into existence and is known as the Stockman House.
More driving. Ended up in Illinois, just southwest of Chicago. Or “chick-ay-go” as I once pronounced it when I was but a child.
Kilometres achieved: 1146
*Mostly because it’s a home made of concrete. Read this.