Monday, September 5, 2011

The Mirage

September 3: My sudden decision to halt early at the HoJo turned out to be fortuitous. Thunder, rain, and wind struck ferociously in the early morning hours. Instead of being kept awake as I would have in the tent I fell right back into slumber.
I would not, however, avoid getting wet on the day's walk. I was beset throughout the eighteen miles by a steady sprinkle and sometimes more. I was miserable, but on the upside a desire not to stop in those conditions drove me to Reinbeck early in the afternoon.
I went into town merely to grab grub and escape the weather. As I turned onto Broad Street my eyes found a sight my brain would not believe. Sure I had seen a mirage I wandered in a befuddled state around the business district, which took all of about three minutes. Suddenly I stood in front of the mirage once more. There staring back at me with a come-hither look was the Broad Street Brewery. I went inside.
What I found there was equally amazing. The owner, Trevor, a young father of four was trying his hand at the micro-brewing game. He had just opened the place on Independence Day of this year. Did he hear the voices? If you brew it they will come....
Craig, Trevor's stepfather, had helped manufacture the rye and sorghum beers on tap (the sorghum is for Coeliacs) and was working on an ale for Oktoberfest. Teeni, Trevor's wife, is a substance abuse counselor who helps out on weekends in order to build up her clientele. Connie, Trevor's mother, showed up later to lend a hand. Connie and Craig promised to put me up in Marshalltown where they live.
I felt at home immediately and the delicious rye beer certainly didn't hurt. A brigade of interesting people trooped in and out the door while I sat and enjoyed their company. I exchanged toasts with a pastor, the mother of a NHL prospect, a baker/musician (Dan, who along with his wife Meggan we may see in a later episode), and a descendant of Quanah Parker, the famous Comanche leader, just to name a few. All had great stories to tell, which, along with the great music provided by DJ Trevor, made for an unforgettable evening.
Everyone was gung ho about my journey - a music festival the next day, Jackfest, had in fact been organized to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project. Most, therefore, were already familiar with the charity. Not since I stumbled into Wildcat Hollow in June had I met such an eclectic group.
I am so thankful to Trevor and Teeni, who offered me a place to sleep for the evening, allowing me the luxury of staying at the brewery. This oasis is real and if you're ever in the area I suggest you go out of your way to find it.

Check out the Broad Street Brewery's site at
18 miles/1506 total miles

1 comment:

Teeni said...

Alastair, it was such a pleasure to meet you and hear about your amazing adventure. Thank you for your glowing review of our "oasis." Our website is, and we're also on Facebook under the same name. We look forward to following your adventure and cheering you on!