awoke to driving blinding soaking rain with lightning and thunder.
After breakfast with the folks and warm hugs goodbye, Michael
hooked up in the rain with umbrella-holding assistance from Aunt
Dots. Hooking up came off without a hitch, <g> and we were
on the way to Massachusetts before 10am.
Driving was tough
in the rain, and we got lost a couple of times in places where the
roads were not well marked, and one place (Woonsocket) where the
road we wanted was mismarked on the map. Finally we made it to
Bellingham, MA to the Circle CG Campground and Michael scurried to
the office in the driving rain and secured our site. (We ended up
getting 7 inches of rain in the one day at Bellingham MA!)
Hooking up in the
pouring rain was another adventure. Michael wore the dry rider and
we got leveled and hooked up.
Once we had that
done, we loaded the dirty laundry into the car and headed to the
laundromat in the campground. It was well-furnished and very
clean. I did the laundry as Michael cleaned the rig. (See TIPS
for more on our traveling routine.)
sooner had we gotten the clean clothes put away, but the phone
rang! It was my friend Dave whom we had come to visit. He presented us each with a gift. Michael got a little
sailboat and i got a T-shirt that Dave had made me! Click the
picture to the left to see my shirt and its creator with me. :)
We went together to
a fantastic Italian restaurant, Bertucci's in Holliston, MA.
Michael got shrimp scampi, Dave got rigatoni with plum tomato
sauce (except that it was actually fettucine) and I got a dish
called Chicken Domani, yummy chicken medallions with spinach and
rotini pasta in a wine broth. Everything was wonderful.
After dinner it had
stopped raining and we went off in search of the elusive ice
cream. Scoops was our first choice since it was the original lure
that Dave used to get us to come here. <g> But they were
closed! 8pm on Sunday night and they were closed! So was the the
Newport Creamery, another ice cream place down the road! .. So we
went to Baskin Robbins and satisfied our passion for ice cream
there. A drive around the Irish cemetery and a look at the tower
there, and we returned to the campground. We said our so-longs
till tomorrow and ... here i am! :)
morning we awakened to bright beautiful SUNSHINE! Oh, what a
difference a day makes! We did our morning routine including
uploading yesterday's site update at the campground office. We
were ready at 11am when Dave arrived to take us off on our tour of
some of the sites around this area.
Dave drove so that
we could both enjoy the scenery on the way up, and since we went
via the circuitous route (r-OW-t) 126, the sights were abundant.
Our first stop was the site of "the shot heard 'round the
world" where the Revolutionary War started in Concord
posed for photos in front of the Concord Monument. Dave read Ralph
Waldo Emerson's Concord Hymn as we stood on the site where Emerson
himself had spoken the words of dedication in 1837.
"By the rude
bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world..."
We felt as if we
were living the beginning of this momentous war when Dave read
William Wadsworth Longfellow's poem:
It was two by the
When he came to the bridge in Concord town.
He heard the bleating of the flock,
And the twitter of birds among the trees,
And felt the breath of the morning breeze
Blowing over the meadows brown.
And one was safe and asleep in his bed
Who at the bridge would be first to fall,
Who that day would be lying dead,
Pierced by a British musket-ball.
We were all really
moved by this quiet pastoral scene, unsullied by the years,
preserving for us the sense of calm that was ended only
temporarily by the shots of the Revolution.
photos at the right came from this park.
on the agenda was the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum of Our Natural
Heritage in Lexington, MA. Here we saw all manner of relics of
Scottish Rite / Masonic and other lodge heraldry including the
beautiful glass mosaic we posed before in the photos you see at
There was also a
nice display of photos and artifacts called "Return to Route
66", a display of "Made in Massachusetts" items,
and "Flash! The Associated Press Covers the World" with
a collection of memorable photos from the past 150 years.
A lovely flower
meadow tempted my camera and i got these flower pics.
The last photo is
me at the starting line of the Boston Marathon. <g> .. as if
i'd run a marathon in those sandals.
to the Market Basket and picked up some supplies and then headed
back to our campground where Michael fired up the grill for our
picnic. Here is Dave and Michael enjoying some cheerful banter and
this delicious dinner. (Details and more
pictures of us and of the food.)
At the end of the
day, both Michael and I were happily remembering all that we had
done and seen, thanks to our wonderful friend and tour guide,
We parted with a "so long, see you" and a feeling that we certainly will meet again. Have I mentioned that Dave is a friend that I met online from the newsgroups and my Art Challenge? :)
we awoke early after a great night's sleep at Bellingham and got
our rig ready again for the road. This included filling with
propane and hooking up the car. Then we said goodbye to this
beautiful campground and headed north on I-95 toward Maine.
Aside from the fact
that the driving was difficult with lots of erratic drivers (My,
am I being polite!), the journey was uneventful.
We arrived in
Kittery at about 11am. Kittery is one of several Maine towns along
the coast that has garnered fame from hosting a huge assortment of
outlet stores. The main street of town is just one outlet mall
after another, so close together, the one can walk from one to the
next for the whole length of the town!
After a quick run
into Harry and David's outlet store to pick up some Moose Munch
(see photo at right) <g>, we walked across the bridge to
Bob's Clam Hut for a delicious and bountiful treat of clams and
clam chowder. (See photos)
lunch, we did a little more shopping in Kittery (see above) and
then headed up the road to Freeport ME where we secured our
campsite (left). It was only 4pm by then and so we unhooked the
car and headed into town. Our stop at LLBean proved fruitful as
Michael found the duck shoes that he wanted and I found the
rainwear that i wanted. (Pictures to follow.)
|We began this day
early, uploading the site to the 'net at our camp in Freeport.
Then we drove the RV mit car to town, stopping for gas along the
way (see photos, right). I found the bleeding heart growing right
beside the gas station building!
||After we parked in the big lot on
Bow Street, we walked to the bank to get some Canadian Money and
then to the Post Office to mail some bill payments. (Another of
those necessary evils!)
|We decided that you all might want
to have a glimpse of the remarkable place that is the LLBean store
here in Freeport and so we went in and got a couple of pics before
heading back to get lunch.
||We were all set to have our usual
picnic in the RV when I spotted Ralph's Lazy Lobster along the
road and Michael thought that a lobster roll sounded good. (See
right photo and also the yummy-licious one on the food page HERE.)
Our GPS showed an
outline of the next interesting events, if it indeed posted our
locations. Here is what happened:
I was driving on I-95 north from
Freeport for about an hour when I became too tired to want to
continue driving. We pulled into a rest stop to trade drivers.
As Michael took over driving, as always, he asked me how it had been
handling and what speed i'd been going.
I told him that the brakes
seemed a little squishy, but that they had been that way for a few
days. (He had not driven since before NY.) Since we are towing the
car, things feel a bit different than they ever did before.
When he started driving, he found
that the "squishiness" of the brakes was unacceptable so
he pulled us into a K-Mart lot and we went in to get some brake
fluid and he checked it. It was ok, so we continued on up the road
with me driving again. I was joking that he would do anything to
get out of driving. <g>
|We were going along seemingly ok
when a noise began in the living room. (This happens from
time to time; things shift about.)
I asked Michael to fix it and,
"While you are back there, get the camera and take a pic of me
driving with a view through the windshield." (See resulting photo at right.) :)
discovered that the noise was one of our light bulbs in our
homemade lamps that had worked loose. After he took the pic of me
driving, he came back up front and we saw a sign for a rest stop.
We decided that M would drive from there. ...
||Ch-KUNKKKK!!!! The RV
shuddered, pulling to the right. My teeth clenched together, my
gaze matching my grip as i steered us to a stop safely off the
side of the highway. Only then did i dare to ask Michael,
"What in the hell was THAT?" The smell of panic and
burning rubber filled the RV as he went out the back door. I
|| The tread on the right rear outside tire had completely
exploded, sending itself ripping with its steel belting into the
cabinetry of the RV, ripping a gaping hole in the bottom, before
depositing itself in the road behind us.
|Michael instructed me to shut off
the engine and turn on the flashers. I went back in and turned off
the engine, but then realized that i'd somehow already turned on
the flashers. I wandered back outside into the artificially bright
sun which seemed to be making a funny singing sound. Michael told
me to go back in. I did.. but then came back out. He later told me
that i was white as a sheet and that he feared that i would faint.
I came back out drinking some water
and then insisted that we set up our reflection triangles which
were in the wrong side of the RV so M had to dodge traffic to get
them. I set them up.. very nice triangles.
||Anyway.. scary stuff. It
was some time before we discovered that our jack didn't work and
that we would need help getting it fixed. Our cell phone didn't
work from our remote location, so calls to AAA went uncaptured
into the ether. Pretty soon a tow truck appeared and the man (not
the brightest light on the tree) ascertained that he didn't have
the tools to fix it so he called someone else. That guy didn't
have the tools either.
|A third call produced Al from a tow
place, and after a few false starts with his air-hose attachments,
he was able to jack up the motorhome, and, using some of Michael's
tools and his, he replaced the tire with our
new spare. He was meticulous in making sure that all was done
right and that everything was put together properly. Then he told
us that a tire shop where he was heading would be able to sell us
a new tire and mount it on our rim if we followed him into Bangor.
We did this and got our new tire for $120.
||We decided that we really wanted to
see what was up with the brakes, to make sure that they were ok.
We had had a complete several hundred dollar brake adjustment job before we left Indiana, but
things just didn't seem right.
The people at the tire place
suggested a Ford repair facility. Michael was watching the guy at
the truck place as
he opened up the brake thing today and a piece that is supposed to be
used in adjusting the brakes just FELL OUT. It had been jiggling
around LOOSE in there with the brake shoes and drums and stuff.
This was not related to the tire trauma in any way. Lice AND fleas.
They are fixing this now, 10 pm on Wed, 6/20. We will spend the
|Last night at the repair
facility was amazingly quiet. Of course there was all the drilling
and air jacks and other noise till midnight when they closed down,
but it was silent as a tomb till 6am when they all came back to
work! We were on the road by 7.
The drive today was pleasantly
uneventful. We did stop at a Walmart and got some supplies to enable
Michael to fix the underneath storage compartment where it had
ripped apart. Another stop at a home-improvement store netted us a
"scrap" piece of plywood that was perfect for this
project. I also bought a hook that i wanted for my dresses.
flora have changed significantly over the last few days, from maple,
oak, and pine to primarily birch, spruce and pine. Lupine of blue,
pink, and white wave lazy hellos as we pass them.
We arrived here in Sussex
New Brunswick early this afternoon and had time to do some of the
work that we bought ourselves at the home improvement store. I
showed you the "before" photos of the outside compartment
that had gotten hurt in our tire terror. Here are the after photos.
Michael lined the inside with new plywood, screwed it in.. then
lined it with a rubber liner.
We took the car into town after we
did the upload of the above (I just added the paragraph about the
flora, too.) We drove to the Sussex Mall and found a grocery where
we bought some supplies to tide us through the weekend, including
refills of our 4 one-gallon water jugs. (A gallon is slightly LESS
than 4 liters. ;))
After our shopping, we bought some
beer at the liquor store and then grabbed a late supper at the Dairy
Queen. We carried our "cool treats" back to our car and
watched people pull on the door of the liquor store, since it had
closed at 9pm. <g>
|Woke up early to a very
cool morning at Pine Cone Camp in Sussex, got ready and hooked up,
and headed down the road. Along the way, we crossed over into Nova
Scotia and got these photos at the Welcome Center.
I drove the entire way, about 5
hours. I kept thinking that we were almost there. A kilometer is
just 1000 meters, i thought.. that's not far! Well.. you get enough
of them piled up and they are just as far as a bunch of miles. I was
plenty tired by the time we got here.
|After we got settled into
our site, I took the pics at the left. Then we went to the office to
upload, get our email, and put in a call our friend Ken who lives in Halifax.
Ken called us back on our cellphone
later and we made arrangements to call later in the weekend. He is
working on the boat and thinks that he will have it ship-shape for
us by Monday!
Michael checked on the Halifax
repeaters and announced himself on one. He got into a conversation
with a guy in Halifax who told us that he had just been on a trip to
the States. He told us that he had been to Dayton and asked us if we
had camped at the KOA there. We said yes, that we were the ones with
the loud party. He said that he was camped just a few feet away from
Michael then worked on the big radio,
getting it all set up for Field Day and made some
"practice" contacts. He worked a station in St. Louis, one
in Belgium, one in Russia, and another in central Pennsylvania.
These were on 20M.
While he did this, i lost a bunch of
money doing vegas style scoring solitaire.
At 1:45 GMT, we listened as well as
we could to the W1AW Field Day message and tried to get it all
|Before Field Day
started at 3pm, we had a leisurely breakfast and then I did laundry
and uploaded the site while Michael cleaned the RV. We were happy to
receive several nice emails from our friends who are following us
around. Thanks! :)
We started off our Field Day
2001 with visitors! Glenn and Rae from near here in Halifax came to
visit us. We got just one picture of them, but it wasn't even very
good, so we will need to visit with them again for sure!
||Barry from the
campground came over too and had a look about. Barry and his partner
Donna are really renovating this into a nice campground. They have
done a lot of work in remodeling of buildings and replacing
utilities, etc, as well as laying out new sites and putting down new
gravel. We are confident that this is going to be a really beautiful
campground. Well, it is nothing to sneeze at right now!
See our Field Day pictures
under Hobbies on the Road.