THURMAN Lila Harrington visits her daughter in Iowa as often she can, but her most recent trip brought her up close and personal with some presidential types.
Harrington, who lives in Thurman, happened to be spending a couple of weeks with her daughter, Leslie (Silva) Saftig in Ames, Ia. when they realized it was almost time for the annual Straw Poll festivities.
I decided to stay an extra week, Harrington said. So Leslie and I traveled around to see the candidates.
The two personally met and chatted with Mitt Romney, Barack Obama, Rudy Guiliani, Mike Huckabee, Sam Brownback and Tommy Thompson.
During her stay, the annual RAGBRAI Ride took place, in which her son-in-law, Dan, and grandson, Andy, rode a tandem bike. The RAGBRAI is an acronym for the (Des Moines) Registers Annual Bike Ride Across Iowa, and it is a benefit for the Cancer Society. The ride is a week long and covers 477 miles.
Lance Armstrong was there riding, too, she said. They close all the roads across the state, and there were 20,000 riders.
Meanwhile, Harrington and her daughter traveled from site to site to visit with presidential candidates.
Mitt Romney is so charismatic, good looking and I agreed with ll of his platform, she said. I was so bowled over by him, he looked right at me and I almost melted into the floor.
Barack Obama was at a farm, standing in front of a large white barn with an American flag on it and next to a huge field of corn.
He answered our questions after his speech, she said. She was disappointed that her camera ran out of film as they conversed with Obama so she didnt get many good photos.
After that, we drove across the state to pick up Dan and Andy after the RAGBRAI race, she said. It was a beautiful ride through miles nd miles of fields of soybeans. After the two riders did the traditional dipping of their bikes in the Mississippi River, they all returned home to Ames.