Moved to New Site

10/21/14 Tuesday in Advance, NC (Forest Lake-TT)

I slept in this morning, then we got talking to our neighbors who love sitting by their fire early on a very cold morning (in the 40’s). They are truckers (all men gathered), some of whom have been to Washington. Anyway, we mentioned that we needed a really level site. They noted a nice long pull through site that someone had just vacated this morning.

We went back to Miss Zanzibar, ate breakfast, then walked to the office to ask about being able to leave the rig for 2 nights while we attend my niece’s wedding. They said fine, as long as it was just for that and that we were letting them know. Knowing now that we wouldn’t have to put our RV into storage for those 2 nights, we wanted to move to a more level site.

We checked out the one near our fire lovers and another by the lake; the lake site won. It wasn’t perfectly level, similar issues to our other site, but we now have both slides out, FHU, great/strong 50 amp power ($3/night), face North, with lovely lake views. This campground is really nice; very friendly staff and campers, clean bathrooms, gorgeous pools (yes, one for adults and another for families), even 2 hot tubs. Lots of critters: birds, squirrels, ducks. Some of the roads have bad potholes and rough gravel, others are asphalt. They have lots of trees so few satellite sites and more short than long sites.

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Then I got my light housecleaning done. Believe it or not, it was lunch time already. In the afternoon I worked on the blog and caught up on Internet research (RV dealers, things to do/see, route to next destination). The perfect relaxing day. I’d set my chair out under the shade of a tree by the lake but never managed to get there. Even though it was pretty cold this morning, the sun brought wonderful warmth (low 70’s) later.

Nothing special for our evening except adjusting to no DVR. John watched “Person of Interest” in the bedroom while I watched “Frontline” in the living room.

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Moving on – to Advance, NC and Dentist Visit

10/20/14 Monday in Advance, NC (Forest Lake-TT)

On our way by 8:15 am. We had a little excitement when, on our way, John realized he’d never input the address into his GPS. Would we find a wide spot to stop and set it? He did, before I-64W, thank heavens.

Long trip, but mostly freeway roads so we were hoping our trip would be pretty endurable. I-64W, I-1295S, I-85S. The intersection of I-64 to I-295 went smoothly, although the road was pretty rough around there and for several miles, even on I-85S for several more miles. Plus we had the refrigerator break open and drop out a couple items. Finally, the road got decent. Ah, North Carolina – it’s beautiful.

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We had a little excitement when John saw a sign for Pilot (fuel). He’d seen the paperwork for this Pilot saying there were no pumps, but he so wanted to get our fuel in Virginia because it’s cheaper than in North Carolina. Well, after pulling off we couldn’t find a Pilot. There was an Exxon with diesel, so John had to finagle some tight spaces to get to the pumps, only to realize that he’d driven onto the wrong side of the pump for our RV. At that point I suggested we just get back on I-85S, so we did.

I called the dentist. An appointment was available Tuesday. Good, no pressure. Later the dentist called. There was a cancellation for 3:30pm today. We might make it, but it would be tight. She said she’d leave my appointment for Tuesday and I could call around 1 or 2 if I thought we could make the 3:30 one. Meanwhile I’m to connect to the Internet and print some paperwork, bringing it to the office completed. In the interest of efficiency, I used my smart phone hotspot to connect and tell my computer to print. When we stopped at a rest area, I connected to the printer and printed them. Wouldn’t you know, it looked like we’d get to the campground at 2 pm, so we called to let them know we’d come to the 3:30 pm appointment.

Once we arrived, it took an hour to check in, unhook the car, find a place and get level. Off we went to the dentist in Lexington. They were wonderful and the great news is: No filling came out! My teeth are fine!!! On our way back we picked up some groceries.

Need I say, we were really tired then and glad we just had to heat up our leftover taco soup from yesterday. We couldn’t get satellite TV but we did get the locals so we were happy to enjoy “Dancing With The Stars” then hit the sack. You know, like the sacks of straw that the slaves had to sleep on in our colonial times……

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Entry Door Problem

10/19/14 Sunday in Gloucester,VA (Chesapeake Bay RV Resort-TT)

Normal Sunday: pancakes for breakfast and Mass. After Mass a nice lady asked for information regarding our CRV as a tow car and what tow bar we use (Falcon II). We were happy to let her know how happy we are with our CRV. It’s been very reliable, the Honda service centers are great, it has lots of storage room and it gets very good gas mileage for an all wheel drive vehicle (25 mpg).

For the afternoon I worked on the blog as John began pre-travel day chores, until the front door wouldn’t open for him! Thanks heavens I was inside and could open it easily. Such a cold windy day to have to struggle with that issue. Especially nerve wracking the day before we’re to leave. Especially since the last 2 times this happened, John struggled a long time, then had a Mobile RV guy come to figure it out. This time he struggled about an hour or more and solved it!!! He had to bend some plate inside the mechanism. It looks like a Rube Goldberg set up in there, I’d say.

We celebrated (hugs and the like), then after cleaning up he came inside to see if he could find a score for the Seahawks game today. He was sure they’d be featuring some east coast team, but he was rewarded with the sight of the Seahawks!! They were behind at that moment, but made a touchdown soon after. I’m glad he got this fun TV (for him) after getting our door to work. Unfortunately, they lost that game, by 2 points.

We got both our big slides in, although we “cheated” by leaving the jacks (levelers) down. Manual and tech people are firm about the need to have the jacks up when we move the slides in or out.

Goodbye Chesapeake Bay (actually we’re on the Piankatank River)

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Colonial Williamsburg: Milliner, Music, and History

10/18/14 Saturday in Gloucester,VA (Chesapeake Bay RV Resort-TT)

On our way out we canceled our last day here, to leave on Monday. We’d decided that would give us some chance for a dentist appointment on Monday as well as put us a day ahead of the Tuesday rains. But the ranger couldn’t get us into another park.

On our way to Williamsburg we stopped at a Home Depot and bought a GFI receptacle. We realize that one of our “rules” is to stay at the campground during weekends, to keep away from the crowds. There were more people around, but we survived. This way we got a rest on Friday.

At the Milliner’s we discovered that factory workers in England would embroider such things as a waist coat (called a vest today) that could be cut out to fit the gentleman.

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On the left is a slipcover, always worn underneath the dress, yet with marvelous embroidery. They wore many things that were unseen, yet beautifully decorated. On the right is a “pocket”, also work underneath their dress.

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In summer the gentlemen could wear a banyan, a robe of lightweight material from India, with designs printed in India also.

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On up the street we went to a program “The Gamut of Music”. No photography allowed. We learned that the first musical note, what we call a “G”, they called “Gamma”. Then the next note in the first chord of 4 notes was called “ut”, thus the term gamut, which means in a linear progression. 2 Gentlemen played the harpsichord and a sort of short cello. A lady played the guitar (sort of like a mandolin). She said women could play small instruments, but not anything that came near the face or neck like violins or horn instruments because they would interfere with the beauty of their face.

Then we just made it for a public audience with Patrick Henry, the great orator of his time. People remember his words “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death”. He was an excellent speaker, but not quite up to LaFayette’s inspiration. As he was answering individual questions at the end, we ate our picnic lunch. It’s a great time saver!

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We then got in on a tour of the Capitol. I was amazed at how similar their system worked to ours. They had the House of Burgesses (2 representatives from each village), plus the legislators (chosen by the Governor) and the Governor. Of course, no checks and balances; all laws had to be approved by the King. Worse, Parliament (not even asking the King) was enacting punishing laws on the colonists with no representation by the King.

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The House of Burgess met here (the Speaker’s chair at the end is the original that survived when the first Capitol burned). The next photo is of where the legislators met. Notice how much richer their room is.

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The Burgesses were dissolved by the Governor, so they continued to meet in secret, when he was out of town. They wanted to create a list for the Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia. George Mason realized how hard it is for a committee to come up with ideas they agree on, so he drew up 10 points for them to begin with. This is what they developed and presented at the Congress:

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This is the courtroom at the Capitol, for felonies like murder, grand theft and treason. The other courtroom we’d been to was the County Court for smaller offenses. In those days the jail (gaol) just held people until their trial. After the trial they are pronounced guilty (hung) or innocent (set free). They did have an option to plea “mercy” from the Judge. If the Judge grants them mercy, then they are branded on the fleshy part of their left hand and they are set free. The next time, they won’t get any mercy.

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Right when we finished our Capitol tour, we heard the fifes and drums. They started their march right outside the Capitol (we actually knew that and planned on it). So we had a great time listening and, for awhile, following them.

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Then we hustled back beyond the Capitol to Bassett Hall. The part to the right was built in 1760, the part left of it in 1770, then when it was restored another part left of that was added in 1930. This is the Williamsburg home of Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller Jr., where they stayed every spring (when the tulips came) and fall (when the mums were in bloom). He was inspired to support the restoration of this, at the time, sleepy village. It took years, but is truly a fabulous experience of history. They loved this home because of its intimacy and ease. It was more a home than a palace, like their others. Each morning he loved to go down Duke of Gloucester Street and talk with the workers (they wouldn’t know who he was) and she loved to invite the ladies from William and Mary College and the village to her place for tea. When she died their son took photos of everything, placing furniture and the like in storage. After he died it was then restored to how it was in 1948, when she died. The last image is of a warming oven.

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At this point we gave our tired feet a treat and caught the shuttle back to the Visitor Center.

As we made our way home, I got a call from the dentist (responding to my message yesterday). Since I wasn’t experiencing any pain it was fine to wait until Monday to see if they had an opening then or Tuesday.

When we got back we treated ourselves to more yummy “Moose Tracks” ice cream. (Since we couldn’t find any true crack in my tooth via photos, I decided that I wouldn’t suffer if I had some ice cream…) While at the store John spotted the Manager, so we asked her if she could get us into Forest Lake a day earlier. She could and did, explaining that many managers can’t. All this was necessary because TT doesn’t answer phone calls (the only way to make CHANGES to your reservations) on the weekend.

When we got back to Miss Zanzibar John got ambitious, turning off all our power and taking out the old GFI outlet. At that point he found that one of its wires was not completely connected. Once he got it secure, we had our power. Nice job John!!!

Such a relief: no worries about a place to stay Monday, the dentist will find a time for me when I call Monday and our GFI issue is solved..at least it looks like it!

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What Dentist Will Take Me?

10/17/14 Friday in Gloucester,VA (Chesapeake Bay RV Resort-TT)

Quiet morning getting the blog caught up and Internet business. Then I checked the Internet for what to do when you think a filling has fallen out. Hmm. See a dentist ASAP. It’s Friday. I got one office (at Sentara, actually), but he would only do an exam with x rays of that one tooth. The treatment would have to happen in another appointment. They don’t work on the weekend and Monday is full. We leave Tuesday. We only have a few days before the wedding, so we can’t commit to being here even another week. So I decided to try for a dentist near our next place in NC. I called our TT campground there, asking the person who answered for a dentist recommendation. She gave me one. I called the dentist office next. They’re closed until Monday, so I left a message. I’ll just have to try again then. We’re thinking of leaving on Sunday to give ourselves another day for dental efforts. Life is just not so simple when you are on the road, but it is flexible.

John drove himself to Sentara to give them a lab test (FIT) he needed to hand deliver. I spent that time getting my Facebook security in shape and attending to emails. Then I realized the printer wasn’t printing. After awhile I thought of our GFI situation. Sure enough, that dining room light didn’t come on. I reset the GFI. Oh Oh. The electricity still won’t come through. I had to give John the bad news when he got back. He checked a few things and simply connected the extension cord. Guess he’ll ruminate on it for a while. He thinks maybe the GFI outlet has issues.

We took a brisk walk around the campground, discussing our travel options as we went. That felt good.

We may be breaking a couple of our travel rules if we left Sunday; 1-not to drive much the day before traveling (we’re going to Williamsburg Saturday) and 2-driving Miss Zanzibar over 200 miles (this trip will be 290 miles).

John asked about getting ice cream. I said I thought I shouldn’t because of my filling issue. He was sad; he knew he shouldn’t have any, so my not having any took away his excuse.

I baked corn muffins but something went wrong-they didn’t quite cook completely. Not sure if I did something wrong or the Microwave did. The Microwave worked fine as a Convection oven for supper, so we’ll see how things go the next time I make those muffins.

Back at home we settled in to our leftover pork supper and the “The Roosevelts…”

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Lab Draw and Colonial Williamsburg

10/16/14 Thursday in Gloucester,VA (Chesapeake Bay RV Resort-TT)

John’s doctor in Washington wanted him to get various lab results from a blood draw so on our way home from Williamsburg Tuesday I did a lot of phone calling to get everything squared away. Thus today the lab has a lab order from our doctor and will see John when they open (8 am) for his blood draw. No food, just water/coffee from midnight until the draw, so we’re getting there as early as possible. It’s on the way to Colonial Williamsburg, so it works out really well.

There is a bridge we cross going on the East side of the York River. It’s free going South, then has a toll going North. The signs say $2 each car. We wondered what it was with our EZ Pass. Yesterday I found out: $.85!! Such a deal!

We made it to Sentara Gloucester Medical Arts by 8 am, but it was 8:45 am before we continued to Colonial Williamsburg.  Nice digs for a lab, yes?

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Such a fun day!!! None of the owies of last time, to start. A couple scenes from our lovely walk from the Visitor Center to the action:

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We arrived in time to be a part of “Storming the Palace”, where us common folk our upset because someone got into our magazine and stole powder. The preacher and militia encourage our anger.

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then lead us to meet Peyton Randolph (Speaker of the House of Burgess) who tells us words are better than violence to settle disputes. He then presents our issues to Governor Dunbar.

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Time to watch parts of 18th century plays at the “Play Booth” in a rendition titled “Fops, Rogues & Villains”. We had such a great time, laughed so hard, I never even thought to take photos!

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On to the Art Museum to hear 18th century music while ambling through the Decorative and Folk Art museums (in one building). Interestingly, they required all backpacks, food, muskets, pistols to be locked in their lockers.

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Paul Revere pieces:

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Public Hospital – for the mentally ill:

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Tranquilizer chair:

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We have a picnic lunch on a bench there, where as I’m eating an apple crunch on something really hard. Hmm. After spitting that bit out on the dirt, I wondered if it might be a filling. Too late to find it on the ground……

We learned more at the wheelwright shop, where it’s difficult working without artificial light, especially on rainy days like yesterday.

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Then we saw the George Wyth (pronounced “with”) house. This man was Thomas Jefferson’s tutor and friend. He was the first professor of law at an American college and signed the Declaration of Independence for Virginia. He was into the “Enlightenment”, loving science and reason, leading many who came to his home in scientific explorations and discussions. George Washington and party gathered here to plan the siege of Yorktown.

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In his backyard there was a “dovecote”, where they raised birds to eat.

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Back to the Art Museum to watch a presentation, “Meet A National Builder: Marquis De Lafayette”. Wow. I think this man was incredible, both the real LaFayette as well as this actor. So French, so passionate, so knowledgeable. The audience gave him a standing ovation. His name is Mark Schneider. The receptionist said he’d been portraying Napoleon all over the world, for years. No photos allowed.

Next we reached the cabinet shop

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Then the Cooper (barrel maker). We were told one of those working here was trained by real coopers in England. We think he’s the man I’ve pictured.

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Time to head home, but on the way we stopped at Whitley Peanut Factory. We’d been told that have tours, but apparently, not any more. We still bought lots of their Virginia peanuts. There are actually many kinds of peanuts, which, incidentally, they say are good for people with diabetes 2.

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Not finished yet, we stopped for gas, then later for groceries. Ah, home at last for another leftover supper of pork roast, then TV.

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Rain

10/15/14 Wednesday in Gloucester,VA (Chesapeake Bay RV Resort-TT)

Since they predicted rain and thunderstorms, we decided to stay at home today, giving me a chance to catch up on my blog writing/posting. Naturally John enjoyed his TV shows (they are growing – from GMA and Kelly and Michael to now include Rachel). I even got some time for reading Internet sites. John, in his ruminations with maps and his spreadsheets, determined that if we drove to the wedding from Forest Lake (in NC) rather than The Club (in VA) it would take only 4.5 hours instead of 7 hours one way. I’m all for that! We were planning to go from The Club to Forest Lake, so it wouldn’t change our direction plans, plus we could save on “getting to the campground” miles. It would be close to 300 miles which is something we really try to avoid. The good thing is we’d be on freeway most of the time, with rest stops available. So we decided to cut out our trip to The Club. Full timing is an exercise in flexibility.

In the afternoon we went for a walk, bringing an umbrella. The rain had been giving us light fits and starts throughout the morning, so we figured we’d be okay for awhile. Well, the those raindrops picked up after we’d walked for 20 minutes, so we headed to Miss Zanzibar. Then it really let loose. Nice timing, right? I love to listen to rain while all cozy in our home. Especially when the leaks have been sealed up.

We confirmed plans to get John’s lab draw done tomorrow morning and what we’ll see at Colonial Williamsburg later. Our evening was the normal TV time.

 

 

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