Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Highway 60: The Yard Sale! (Continued)

Okay, so here's the run down, in as condensed a form as I can put it.

Somehow, despite our best intentions, it was after well after 10 before we were on the road Saturday. Even though Highway 60 runs through Louisville, the sale didn't start until Meade County, which is to the south. So it was after 11 before we were in sale territory. We clearly had a lot of territory to cover and not a lot of time to do it in.

Since we knew we'd be coming back on Sunday, we decided to limit our stops to our side of the road. We planned on hitting whoever was still set up on the other side during the return trip. We also didn't plan on trying to make every stop, but we'd play that by ear. I had looked up info for the main stops in a couple of counties, but I stopped with Hancock, which was as far as I thought we'd get.

A couple of things to understand about these 100+ mile sales, for the uninitiated:

First, it's not 100+ miles of shoulder to shoulder yard sales. I think every person who lives in those seven counties would have to have a sale for that to be possible.

Second, this is mostly rural territory, which means it's not densely populated. It also means that large stretches of 60 are your typical country road with lots of hills and curves and narrow spots where it wouldn't be safe to set up a table full of junk to sell.

So what you get are lots of places where several folks have set up together, followed by several miles of no sales whatsoever. Then you have the towns, where there are lots of set ups all over the place. And you also have the more traditional front yard set up from time to time.

Still, even though it wasn't mile after mile of endless sales, it was still pretty slow going in spots. We were on the road for well over an hour before we even left the first county.

We ended up not hitting every single sale, which is a good thing, as we'd probably still be out there if we'd tried. But we hit so many that it all seems like a fantastic blur.

I do think we saw every kind of set up possible: in the service bays at gas stations, in front of abandoned stores, in fields, beside fields, under huge trees in the yards of farm houses, grocery store parking lots, and on and on. There were private sales. Group sales. Benefit sales. And every other kind of sale you can imagine.

And not every sale was on the highway either. There were countless signs directing bargain hunters off onto side roads. We passed those up for the most part, since you just can't do everything.

Probably the hardest part of the day was spotting sales far enough in advance to plan to stop. Traffic was heavy in some places and there wasn't always a place to run around or back up. Many of the houses are set back from the highway and it was easy to miss a sale set up near a house with a huge front. Still, we did make plenty of stops.

And the stuff! Old stuff. New stuff. Junk. Crap. Cool treasures. And the totally unexpected. (More on that next post.) And the prices were simply rock bottom. I only bought one or two things that cost more than a dollar and most were a quarter or less. There were quite a few folks who were obviously out for the bargain shopping and found it--trucks full of furniture and vans full of clothes and stuff.

We had tons of fun. We got yummy cider from Spencer's Orchard and kettle corn fresh from the popper. We actually heard a woman yell for Billy Bob to go get Butch because someone wanted to buy his lawn mower! (You can't make stuff like this up.)

There was a little bit of a worry towards the end of the day Saturday, since we weren't quite sure where we were going to stay the night. We were trying to get into a state park, but the one in Owensboro didn't have a campground, so we were pushing on to another park in Henderson, trying to get there before the park gates closed. This meant that toward the end of the day we passed up a few sales. But we did get to the campground in time, found a spot and even got set up before it got dark.

Sunday, on the way back, we spent more time in Owensboro and Henderson than the day before, and then repeated our pattern on the way back. All told, we hit five of the seven counties, which is pretty good for a spur of the moment thing. In fact, that was two more than I orignally thought we would get to.

I did hear from one of the vendors that further down the road in Union County there was so much yard sale action that traffic was backed up for hours, but we missed that fun. Still, there's always next year!

Next: The scores!

(EDIT: Your Eddie-tor went back in 10/8 and cleaned up some of the text to make things a little clearer and neater.)

Monday, October 06, 2008

Keith and Eddie's Excellent Yard Sale Adventues!

Narrator*: It all started last week, when Keith came home from camping.

Keith: Hey! They're having a yard sale on Highway 60 next weekend.

Eddie: Really? I didn't know they did that.

K: Yeah. I saw the signs on the way back.

N: So Eddie hopped on the internet a few days later to check it out.

Hmmmm....175 miles.....seven counties....sounds like fun to me!

N: And so, a few days later...

E: Honey, why don't we do the Highway 60 Sale this weekend? We can just go until we're tired and turn around and come home.

K: Okay.

E: Really?

K: Yep. I'm game.

N: The counter-proposal** came the day before they left.

Honey, what would you think abut making an over-night out of it?

E: What do you mean?

K: Go until we're tired, find a place to camp, and spend the night, then come home on Sunday and hit some more sales.

E: Do we have enough time to get everything ready?

K: It's already ready. I haven't put the camping stuff away yet.***

E: What about food?

K: We'll get some stuff tonight and take it with us.

E: Okay.

K: Really?

E: Sure. Sounds like fun.

N: And so the next day, the boys loaded up the car and set out west looking for bargains.

More to come!

*This works best if you imagine the narrator sounding like Waylon Jennings, a la Dukes of Hazzard. Waylon frequently makes guest appearances from beyond to narrate our trips.

**There's always a counter-proposal. And sometimes a counter-counter-propsal!

***Truth is, in the summer the camping stuff never gets put away!