520. Beloit, Mitchell County (KS042)

While I have heard of the more famous Beloit in Wisconsin, I wasn’t familiar with this one. To be honest, even the famous one isn’t all that big a town so I never really thought about it much in any regard anyway. The population of this one is small, but the town seems larger than its 3800 people would suggest. It also seems like it has a bit of…something so kudos to them for that. I’ve seen far too many towns that look and feel as if the life has gently faded out of them, leaving them with some weird sepia spiritual aura. As for the courthouse, I always like seeing them get a little tender loving care so that was nice. My presence here is actually somewhat ironic. Beloit wasn’t on my original itinerary for this drive through Kansas. But there was a cache in the county I had to have once I learned about it. There was no question and no hesitation to redraw my route. The fact that Mankato worked out for other reasons was nice, but I couldn’t say no to Beloit. More to the point, I couldn’t say no to Cawker City, about 20 miles west. Normally, it wouldn’t rate a second thought, but there was a virtual there I needed to get more than anything and I’m so happy the Kansas County Challenge allows virtuals. I rolled into town, not particularly impressed and then I found my destination and I was blown away.

Ladies and gentlemen (or however you identify—I don’t mean to be gender assumptive), I give you the World’s Largest Ball of Twine! I mean, one hears about things like this, but you never really ever expect to see them in the flesh (or in the fiber, as the case may be)! I know this sounds a bit stupid, possibly a little fanboyish, but I was far more excited to see this than you would think a person would be. I took a break from my travels to inform a few people, some of them visually (there are a few people I provide live updates from my especially interesting stops). In the meantime, several other passers-through stopped to gawk at the wonder themselves. There’s a local souvenir shop down the block that sells twine to add to the ball. I considered going to get some to add to it, making myself part of its legend, but I decided against it. On later reflection, I should have gone to at least grab a few postcards to send to people (if they had them, that is. So few places sell them anymore. The last place I found that did was all the way back in Roswell). But that wasn’t important. What was important was claiming the virtual here.

I answered the questions. I sent them off. I logged the World’s Largest Ball of Twine. Then I spent a few minutes basking in the touristy wonder of it all. It was a dumb, silly joy, but it was my joy nonetheless. But all good things come to an end. Eventually, the reality of the well marketed attraction set in. That and, my ultimate goal for this trip was achieved. Don Draper (if you’re into Mad Men) said that happiness is the moment before you need more happiness. Admittedly, he was trying to pitch a possible client, but there’s a certain truth to it. I had what I came for, but there’s always a new cache, a new county, a new horizon. It was time to move on to the next one. I took a long drink of water and put the twine in the rearview mirror. The undiscovered country lay before me, twenty minutes away, in…

6 thoughts on “520. Beloit, Mitchell County (KS042)

  1. Thanks for taking me and other along for the ride.😎 So nice to go with you, I enjoy your writing and the Photos. We did get out to Mammoth Springs State park for the Adventure cache yesterday. Nice ride on US142. 😀


  2. M, I loved the post about the Biggest Ball of Twine! I too love the absurd and can share in your joy! Keep on looking for your next happiness, for that is truly the secret of life, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

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