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Besides planning trips, Burdell also writes this weekly column which tells about sports happenings now and 100, 75, 50 and 25 years ago, sometimes a trip down memory lane that some of you may relate to, what the Ancient Sportsman (Burdell) and Ancient-ess (Charlotte) have been up to and about trips they have been on. Each week is a new adventure.
Tales of the 
Ancient Sportsman
    We are definitely moving toward winter. The cold grey clouds filled the sky this morning and a cold and blustery north wind whipped across the plain as we made our way to the little country church. There was a little white stuff in the air earlier in the week which made it better puzzling weather than fishing weather.
    I knocked out a 1000 piece puzzle that I picked up in Maine on our Trains of New England tour and it only took parts of three days to do it. I enjoy working on puzzles while watching Hawkeye basketball and football or most any other team that at is playing. I think I was hooked on puzzling by my stepdad, Verl Rothe. He seemed to have a puzzle going on the card table most all winter and I spent a lot of hours with him at that table when we were not hunting pheasants. So far no one else in my family appears to have caught the puzzle disease and the Ancient-ess will not touch one. The pleasure is all mine.
    Hooray! Floyd gets to stay in the warmer climate of Iowa for the seventh straight year. It is just too cold in Minnesota for pigs and they don’t play hockey very well. 
    I missed the game Saturday as we attended the wedding of Travis and Angie Blom. They actually got married during the height of the pandemic and only 10 people was able to attend, so they decided to do a rerun with a packed house in attendance. It was a neat time with lots of neat people. 
    I enjoyed watching the Iowa men’s opening game, but I could not find the Friday night game anywhere on my TV. The Hawks are a much more up tempo team this year and Keegan Murray appears to be something special. They may lose some games, but I don’t believe it will be from lack of effort.
    I watched the Hawkeye women play UNI this afternoon. The Hawks appear to be pretty good and Kaitlyn Clark is as electric as she was last year. The Hawks could possibly make a run at the Big 10 title this year, but it is a rugged conference. UNI has some players that are not too bad and they may be a factor in the Valley.
    I am missing high school sports already. It will be another week before I can get a fix with some real basketball. I plan to get a little preview of some area teams Monday night as Lynnville-Sully hosts a girl’s basketball jamboree with each team playing a half. Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont and Montezuma are both in the meet, so I believe I will head up to Sully Monday night.
    I still have not received my new cell phone, so I am still nearly helpless. I guess it is probably on a ship from China that is setting in a dock somewhere. The Ancient-ess will continue her duties as company CEO and I will just sit back and try to relax. She is adjusting well to retirement, but sleeping in has not become a way of life yet. She is still up and going at the same time as usual. Some habits are hard to break.
    We have one more Branson tour to get in before we shut down for the year. It has been a hectic fall and I am ready for a little down time and a little grandkids time. 
    I just put out our proposed schedule for next year and we will be working hard to complete itineraries and trip pricing in the next month. We are finding that the inflationary trends in our country are playing havoc with trip pricing. We will do our best to keep prices down, but there are some things that we just can’t do. 
    I took a little jaunt down through Monroe, Appanoose and Davis counties Saturday morning. I needed to find a new coffee break and restroom stop for our upcoming Branson tour. We usually stop in Kirksville, but McDonalds and other places in Kirksville are drive through only. The Dutch Country Store at the junctions of highways 2 and 63 will work just fine.  The drive down was beautiful with plenty of deer and turkeys out and about. The deer were kind enough to avoid the blue velvet Malibu for which I am grateful. I was intrigued by an auction that was being held at the Amish Produce place. They had a large number of big round bales of hay to be sold and lots of cut wood. There were other things as well and there appeared to be a large crowd of bidders
    Fellowship Bible Church invites folks to a Retirement party for the Ancient-ess on Nov. 21 at 3:00 pm. She has ministered as the Administrative Assistant for 41 years at The Gospel Tabernacle/Fellowship Bible Church.  A program is planned in the new sanctuary followed by a time of fellowship and refreshments in the fellowship hall. FBC is located at 1000 A Ave. West in Oskaloosa.
    Have a great week and winter sports are just around the corner. Yea!