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Posts from the ‘Companions’ Category

Amazing World, Emerging Beauty, and Enchanted Hike

What an amazing world we live in! Yesterday I had an opportunity to photograph a chrysalis and watched a new life as it emerged into the sunlight. Today I was graced by a visit from a lovely new friend and shared a spectacular hike up an Enchanted Rock. There is so much beauty to be found in the world, but it can be easily overlooked as we try to navigate our challenging and changing times. I believe that in the face of these challenges, it is more important than ever to draw on the beauty and order of the natural world as a means to balance and strengthen our hearts. I encourage you to spend an hour or two each week in a place of natural beauty and see what a wonderfully positive impact it will have on your life!

This morning started with a bit of rain so my friend Sandy and I decided it would be best to wait a while before heading out on our hike. I took advantage of these few hours to work on sewing the binding on a quilt I brought with me.

By mid-morning the rain was moving out so I jumped in my truck headed for Enchanted Rock, just north of Fredericksburg. Sandy was already on her way there from Driftwood, TX, just southwest of Austin.  Sandy and her husband Don were the very first RV folks I met in the very first campground I stayed in with Wild Thing, all the way up north of Seattle, WA in a little town called Bothell. Now, what are the chances that I would meet such a great couple so far from home, and what are the chances that we would be able to meet up again so soon! Life is an exciting adventure and I am frequently in awe of its elegant unfolding. Sandy and I “clicked” right away and so I was happy when she offered to drive the hour and a half to meet me while I’m in the area so we could spend this time together! She suggested a hike at Enchanted Rock which is a massive pink granite dome that rises up out of the landscape of the hill country. The summit trail was 0.67 miles and was moderately challenging but the views were spectacular all along the trail. The dark clouds moved off shortly after we arrived and we were left with beautiful blue skies and puffy white clouds to augment the rugged landscape. We both enjoyed the hike and our visit.

 

 

Here’s a link to a little video I took of the 360 degree view from the top!

 

This evening I downloaded the photos I took yesterday with my Nikon of the butterflies and chrysalis in the flower garden in Fredericksburg. I was completely enamored with the chrysalis. It is amazing to me that a butterfly as large as the monarch fits in something so small. I was also curious about the shimmering gold spots and found this article that helps explain the phenomenon.

As I was photographing the chrysalis, I looked down and saw a monarch crawling up a leaf directly below. When I looked closer, I saw that this butterfly had actually just emerged from his own chrysalis! Although I didn’t capture the moment he emerged, it was pretty exciting snapping these pictures of him next to his empty chrysalis!

Tomorrow Dexter and I will hitch up and head north up I10 towards New Mexico. I plan to stop for the night in Van Horn, Texas, the little town I moved to when we left Vermont. The past few days in Texas has been quite a trip down memory lane. I have years of memories scattered all around this state and it has been good to travel back and touch some of them again.

 

 

 

Recipe for Friendship, K9 Sport Sack, Dreaming of Sedona

Recipe for a Fun and Lasting Friendship

Mix two parts fun-loving adventurers from New Hampshire, two parts warm-and-wonderful adventurers from San Antonio, one part wacky Wild Thing from Massachuestts.  Toss them gently together and sprinkle liberally with wine!

I was honored today by a visit from two exceptional couples (and fellow Escape Trailer owners)! I met these terrific folks this past May at the Escape Trailer Appreciation Rally in Osoyoos, BC. We became fast friends during the wine tour portion of the rally and have stayed in touch since. I was fortunate to visit Lucy and Charlie on several occasions at their home in New Hampshire. They live just 2 hours from me in MA! I was also lucky to meet up with Dora and Fred again on one of those trips to NH while they were also visiting Lucy and Charlie. Dora and Fred are full-time RV’ers and they hail from San Antonio, TX. Lucy and Charlie just happened to be visiting Dora and Fred in San Antonio this week, and so they all drove to Kerrville to see me and Dexter today! What fun we had. It’s such an amazing thing to meet people who have the same passion for travel and adventure that you do! We all missed you, Steve!

We enjoyed a  spectacular lunch at a local gem called Grape Juice. Our server, Lanette, was a delight! She’s from Ohio and a fellow traveler! Thank you for the excellent service today Lanette, and thank you, Janice, for introducing me to this great restaurant! Everyone loved the brussels sprouts!

I love these people and am so fortunate to have had an opportunity to share a meal with them and to give them the grand tour of Wild Thing. They were all so helpful and supportive of me during the trailer build process, giving me tips on which supplies to bring on the trip, and coaching me on the fine points of handling the rig. Today they provided even more helpful pointers and equipment suggestions. I’ll soon be investing in a new hose, a space heater, and a water filter as soon as I can find a Camping World!   Lucy and Charlie will also be heading for Tucson in a few days and will also be staying at the Catalina State Park over the Christmas Holiday! Jingle Bells!! It will be an Escape Christmas in Tucson! They will then join Dora and Fred for a guided tour down the Baja Peninsula. That trip is on my wishlist, but not feasible for this year! I’ll be following their journey closely though and wish them safe travels Maybe they will catch up with Glen in Baja!

Dexter was happy to see everyone, after his initial barking-fit-intruder-alert-moment. He is my protector and showed it today! After he calmed down, we modeled his new backpack for everyone. I purchased this dog backpack just before I left for this trip and am thrilled with the product. It’s a K9 Sport Sack and allows me to carry him comfortably on my back. I will be taking some hikes that will be too long for his little 2” legs to keep up with, so this will give me a way to carry him in a way that’s comfortable for both of us. I tried carrying him in a cross body bag, and a purse-like bag, but both were too hard on my back. This pack sits high up so he can see over my shoulder and it’s very comfortable.  He won’t be in it for more than an hour or two but it will be a lifesaver when I need it!

After my visit with the Escape gang, I lay down with a book and promptly fell asleep! I realized that I have been on-the-go for several days and a bit of downtime was in order. I ’m feeling refreshed tonight and glad I took a little time to recharge

Dexter and I have taken three good walks today, so we are getting plenty of fresh air, exercise, and sunshine. I saw this lovely creature on the path…is it a butterfly or a moth?

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This evening, I spent a few hours researching places to go after my stay in Las Cruces, NM,  and before Catalina State Park in Tucson. I have 10 days between those two stops and I’m considering a trip to Sedona, AZ. Steve and I loved the area when we visited briefly last fall and I have been itching to get back there.  I found a campground where I can stay 7 nights on the 50% off Passport America rate of $20.00 a night. Not bad at all for the area. I’ll call them tomorrow to see if they have availability.

I’m planning to take a ride to Fredericksburg tomorrow morning and visit the St. Mary’s Cemetery where my parents are buried and depending on how crowded it is, I may poke around the town a bit. Fredericksburg has grown into quite a top-notch tourist destination with shopping, vineyards, and wineries. There were plenty of Holiday shoppers out when I drove through the town on Friday and I’m not too interested in fighting crowds so I’ll play it by ear tomorrow. Maybe I can sneak in early….

Reconnecting with old friends and Re-Un-Hitching….

I was up today at 5:30 and got hitched and ready for the 250 mile trip from North Texas Jellystone Park to Kerrville-Shriner Park. Along the way I stopped in Waco to see my old friend Vonessa. We haven’t seen each other in 20+ years but it was incredible how those years just melted away when we began to talk. Our friendship remains strong and I hope we can find more time to spend together in the coming years. The more things change, the more they stay the same!

I took the back roads and state highways from Waco to the Texas Hill Country. The drive was longer but much less stressful. Along the way I saw Blackbuck deer, Buffalo, and Axis deer grazing in the pastures. There was not an opportunity to stop but I’m hoping to catch a few of these beautiful creatures in my camera lens over the next few days. I arrived at the campsite an hour before dark. Dexter was in a mood and did not want to be left alone. He’s getting just a bit spoiled with all the one-on-one time he’s receiving from me!

This site is a pull through shaped like a half circle. It wasn’t very level and I futzed a bit pulling forward and backing up in an attempt to find a sweet spot, but finally resigned myself to using the Anderson Leverers. It was then that I noticed that the connections were pretty spread out. The sewer connection was quite a distance from the water and electric.  I laid out my water hose and power cord to be certain they would reach once I got set up and proceeded to back the camper up on the Anderson Levelers. I chocked the wheels, unhitched and began to make the connections. It was then that I found the power cord was about 2” too short. I could connect it if I stretched it so it was suspended off the ground! ARGH…soooo close!! Well, there was nothing to do but hitch back up and move the camper so the power cord could reach comfortably. That was a hard lesson to learn! I need to give myself a larger margin of error when eyeballing distance. When I laid out the power cord, it would have worked if I hadn’t moved the camper that 6” to level it! I’m getting pretty good at hitching and unhitching with all the practice I’ve been getting so it didn’t take me too long to make the correction and I was fully set up by dark.   I’m glad to be settled in for the next few days here in the Kerrville-Shriner State Park. My campsite is close to a busy road but traffic noise is just background for me and I’ll put on the white noise machine to muffle it.

I’ve just returned from dinner with my High School friend Janice. We had a wonderful time catching up. I think it’s only been about 15 years since I’ve seen her! What a gift it is to have the means to visit my friends and what a blessing it is to spend time together.

I’m also going to reconnect with some new friends while I’m here as well! Tomorrow some of my new Escape Trailer friends are coming for a visit from San Antonio. On Monday, Sandy and Don, the friends I made in Bothell, WA in the first campground I stayed, will meet up with me for a hike. I am enjoying such a community of friends on the road!

Gettin’ My Girl On, Family Time, Rosas Cafe with Rose!

I spent this morning shuffling things around in the camper. The more time I spend in her, the more I see how things can be better arranged. I also labeled some of my bins so I know what is stored where!

I had a shopping list to fill, so I set out for Burleson just after lunch. At the top of my list was makeup. I forgot my makeup kit at home and it hadn’t bothered me until I got to Texas! A girl can’t do without her beauty aids here in the Lone Star State…especially with company coming! The helpful staff at Ulta Beauty helped me “get my girl on”! Thanks especially to Tanner, I’m now ready for anything!

A quick stop at Walmart for bottled water, Dr. Pepper, and a broom rounded out the errands. I didn’t think I needed a broom in the camper. It’s small enough that I can just clean the floor with a small whisk broom and a cloth, but I realize that I need a broom for the exterior. Often the area around the door of the camper is littered with leaves and branches and an outside broom would make it easy to tidy up the campsite so I don’t track stuff inside.

Dexter and I took a nice walk while we waited for our company. This brilliant tree against the clear sky caught my eye…Auburn Leaves and Blue Sky.

My brother John and his wife Tracy arrived just before 5. We had a nice time catching up and they love the Wild Thing! They have a camper of their own and keep it parked in Matagorda, TX on the coast. I will have to visit them there someday!

John drove us to meet their daughter, my niece Robyn, her husband James, and their (adorable!) daughter Rose! We met at a gymnastics facility where Rose was taking her weekly lesson. She is quite a talented soon-to-be-4 year old! It was fun to watch her tumbling around, she is so full of life and joy!

After gymnastics, we met up at Rosa’s Cafe and Tortilla Factory for a little Mexican food. I have been craving so good southwestern Mexican food and this was a delicious dinner filled with stories and laughter. It’s so good to catch up with family!

 

Two beautiful girls with Auburn Hair and Blue Eyes!

Tomorrow I’ll hitch up and head south. I’m meeting my friend Vonessa in Waco for coffee on my way through, then driving on to Kerrville where I’ll set up camp at the Kerrville-Shriner State Park. Tomorrow night I’m meeting my friend Janice for dinner. I’m so blessed to have this opportunity to catch up with so many people I care about!

Art Projects, Wizard of Oz, Homemade Pizza, and Hurts Doughnuts

It’s 10:45 p.m., and after a full day with the Jones family, I’m settled back in the camper and beginning to repack things for my journey tomorrow. It was a full and fun day with lots of fun and laughter! Dexter and I arrived at the Jones house in Tulsa about 10:30 this morning. The kids were eager to share with me some of the art projects they’ve done over the past year and to spend some time drawing together.

Last year when the kids visited Steve and me, we went for a long walk in a park. Jane picked up sticks and branches and brought them home. She used these to create these wonderful art pieces with the kids.  The branches she collected on our walk were used to form the outer circle and then yarn and ribbons were woven to create the trunk and the tops of the trees. What a wonderful way to preserve the memory and to enjoy a craft project with the kids. Each tree is so unique, reflecting the personality of the individual child.

Another art project they completed last year were hand-painted Russian Matryoshka Dolls.  Roman’s, of course, were decorated as Apple Corporate Executives!

 

Then they got creative with the stacking aspect of the dolls!

And of course that disintegrated further into the sillies! Always so much fun with this crowd!

No day is complete with kids without an injury…Poor Colin wrenched his ankle. It required ice and a few minutes of elevation before he was over it and back to his bouncy self!

Dexter is adjusting so well to the increased activity in his life. He and Chewy, the family Newfoundland, behaved very well together again today. Dexter even let little miss Laurel hold him!

Laurel wanted me to draw her a monkey eating a banana from a photo she found online so we sketched it out. The splotches on the side are Chewy Kisses!

Sketch Monkey Eating Banana

 

Laurel then drew her own chimpanzee!

She is doing so well!

Jane fixed us lovely picnic lunch and we went to the local park to enjoy it and a romp at the playground. Dexter enjoyed running and playing the chase game with the kids, barking at other dogs, and chasing leaves.

After all the excitement of the morning it was time for a little quiet,  so we snuggle down on the couch to watch The Wizard of Oz. Jane let me use her washer and dryer so I got my laundry all caught up while we enjoyed the movie. It’s nice to have that chore out of the way.

Jane has been knitting a beautiful lace scarf and it had gone a bit awry. She was having difficulty getting it back on track and I was able to help her sort it out. She’s now ready to pick up where she left off and continue with this stunning piece! What beautiful work she is doing!

 

I was treated to Jane’s famous homemade pizza for dinner. The crust was amazing, it was light and fluffy and so flavorful. For dessert, we had Hurts Donuts, a family favorite. This small company started a with a few stores in Missouri and now has one store here in Oklahoma. The donuts are so good, they’re almost like having cake. Each one is a unique flavor! Mine was a chocolate cake donut covered with Butterfinger Crumbles. Yummy! It was worth the splurge!

Dexter and I are both pretty tuckered out after such a full an exciting day and we’re looking forward to a quiet sleep here at the campground. We are the only campers left in the park after the busy holiday weekend except for one permanent resident and the Camp Host. Tomorrow morning I’ll get this buggy hitched up to the truck and head on down to Burleson Texas! Yee Haw!

Walks on the Lake, Breakfast at the Lodge, Cookout with the Jones Family, and Colored Flames

What a spectacular day here in Hulbert OK! Dexter and I slept in a little, then took a nice walk along the shores of Fort Gibson Lake. I find the cypress trees so beautiful. They put their roots down in the shallows and look so stately and strong. The sun quickly burned off  the morning chill from the air and the sky was a brilliant blue.

After our walk, Dexter was ready to nap in the camper, so I I decided to eat breakfast at the Lodge Restaurant here in the Sequoyah State Park. I enjoyed an omelet with toast and hashbrowns for $8 and a pot of coffee for $2. What a bargain compared to the prices we see around Boston and Jimmy was an excellent waiter!

I have received terrific service her at the Sequoyah. Tabby helped me out when I first arrived, calling ahead to be sure my campsite would be ready and offering directions and helpful suggestions. Service with a smile!

After breakfast, I walked along the lake shore and down to the point. The rocky coast was quite beautiful and I saw fossils in the rocks along the path. The fish were jumping, there were hawks out feeding, and seagulls diving for fish. I’ve seen a heard of deer crossing the road twice while I’ve been here but haven’t had an opportunity for a photo of them.

After my walk, I drove into town to fill my propane tank. I’ve been burning through propane at a fast pace since I’ve been running the furnace most nights. I also stopped at the Auto Zone where Jason helped me with the taillight of my truck. I had received a message on the trucks display that the passenger side taillight was burned out. Jason checked it for me and found it was working fine. He pulled the light assembly out for me to double check but everything seemed to be in order. Jason told me that the entire taillight assembly will need to be replaced if it does go out so I’m going to wait.  I’ll have to figure out how to reset the error message but I’m happy the light is working. Thank you, Jason, for taking the time to help me today! What terrific service!

Back at the campsite, I got things ready for the cookout. I set up the Clam House, brought out the Weber Grill for the first time, set the table, hung my wind chime and Camper Sign (from my DH!!), and opened the awning! My next door neighbor here at the campground had some wood left over and offered it to me for a fire. I gratefully accepted!

Jane and the kids, Roman, Vinny, Laurel, Nicholas, and Colin, and their Newfoundland, Chewy (short for Chewbacca!) arrived full of fun and laughter. Dexter was a little unsure of Chewy at first, but calmed down quickly and they did well together. Dexter is fast becoming used to all the new stimuli of campsite living!

We had a great time touring the camper and getting the bar-be-que going. The new Weber grill connected to the camper propane with the quick connect adaptor I had installed and performed like a champ! Richard arrived just in time to eat… hamburgers and hotdogs for everyone!

 

With our bellies happy, we headed to the lake so Chewy could take a swim. Being a water dog by nature, she enjoys any opportunity for a dip! The light was just amazing as the sun started to go down on this beautiful day.

We ended the evening with a campfire, augmented with a colored flame stick! What a fantastic day!

 

Un-Hitched, De-Winterized, Boomered and Soonered!

What a beautiful park this is! Sequoyah State Park here in Hulbert, OK is quite a surprise. I don’t immediately think of a lake and pine trees when I think of Oklahoma, but here they are! Here’s a couple of short videos describing the ammenities of this park:

 

Once the sun came up and my camping space was vacated by the previous tenant I was able to get Wild Thing parked, unhitched, and de-winterized. The sites are wide and spacious and this pull-through site is on a cement slab. I did have to tweak the level with my Anderson Levelers but I’m an old pro at that now. Once I had everything set up I flushed all the anti-freeze from the water lines. The temps last night were a balmy 51F and rose to the mid 70’s today. Heaven! No worries about freezing water lines here, at least in the next few days. Once I had the lines flushed out I filled the water tank and ran the pump a few minutes to clear out the last little bit of antifreeze. This antifreeze is non-toxic, unlike the type used in cars, but I still didn’t want any left in the lines. With that accomplished, I took the water heater off by-pass and let the tank fill, then turned on the water heater. Within a half hour, I had plenty of hot water for washing dishes and taking a shower. It’s nice to have a fully functional rig!

This park received a re-model two years ago and is quite something. They offer horseback riding, a pool, golf course, marina and boating activities, and much more. The campground I am in is quiet and on the edge of the peninsula. Dexter and I took a short walk down to the water. I will explore more of the trails and the nature center with the kids when they come tomorrow for a visit.

This afternoon I drove into Tulsa to meet up with Jane (DH’s sister), her husband Richard (who was celebrating his 45th BD today), their 5 children (Roman, Vinny, Laurel, Nicholas, and Colin), and two of their cousins at Richard’s parents’ house.  Richards Mom, Stephanie, has a sweet dog named Bandit and he and Dexter were fast friends within minutes of our arrival. They kept us all laughing with their antics! We ate Jane’s homemade chili ( yummy!), Stephanie’s homemade biscuits with chocolate gravy ( super yummy) and of course birthday cake! OU Football is a staple in this household and I was treated (frequently) during this game to the “Boomer Sooner Touchdown Celebration Song” by the whole gang. Here’s a video of the fun along with some photos from this afternoons fun!

 

What a great time we had! Tomorrow, the whole gang is coming to the campground for a cookout in the camper. I can’t wait to spend the day with the Jone’s exploring this beautiful park.

 

 

Wild Thing Winter 2017 Trip Itinerary Rev. 2, the Texas Edition!

 

I’ve spent the afternoon adjusting my travel plans and Texas is now officially on the itinerary! I’m looking forward to seeing family and friends and visiting the resting place of my parents on this leg of the trip.

Here’s my updated itinerary:

Friday, November 24 Leave Dickson, TN and head West on I40 through Memphis and Little Rock. I have two potential Wal Marts picked out for an overnight stop, the first about 340 miles from here and the other one a bit further along at 390 miles from my current location. If the winds and traffic are with me I will push on to the latter one which will put me in closer proximity to Sequoyah State Park in Hulbert, OK. I have a reservation there for Saturday, November 25 – Tuesday, November 28 and I’m looking forward to spending a few days visiting with the Jones Family (my DH’s sister Jane, her husband Richard, and their 5 children). Maybe it will be warm enough for me to finally get this camper de-winterized!

Tuesday, November 28 I’ll drive to the North Texas Jellystone Park in Burleson, TX, just south of Fort Worth. I’ll hang out there Wed and Thursday so I can catch my brother John and his wife Tracy when they arrive Thursday evening to visit their daughter Robyn and her family. We will have a chance to share a meal and catch up a bit.

I’ll be back on the road Friday, December 1 heading for Kerrville, Texas. I have a nice spot reserved at the Kerrville-Shriner Park until Tuesday, December 5.  This stop will give me a chance to visit my parents’ graves in Fredericksburg, Texas, visit a high school friend Janice, and hopefully share a bit of time with my nephew Paul and his family. I’m also hoping to catch up with my friends Sandy and Don who live in the area.

Tuesday, December 5, I’ll hitch my wagon back up and head north. I should make it as far as Fort Stockton for a dry camping overnight in a WalMart parking lot before continuing on to Leasburg Dam State Park in Radium Springs, NM on December 6. I’ll spend the next few days touring the White Sands National Park and the area surrounding Las Cruces, NM.

Tucson is just a day drive from Las Cruces so I’ll head out on Saturday, December 9 unless something else catches my eye!

Happy Thanksgiving, Itinerary Changes, Spread the Love

Happy Thanksgiving to all my cyber friends! I hope you are today surrounded by family and friends, carving out a bit of time for yourself and stuffing as much love as you can into the hearts of those around you!

I’m having a quiet day, enjoying a bit of downtime. Last night I had an impulse to write an e-mail to wish my siblings a Happy Thanksgiving and it occurred to me that too often I think of them all lumped together as “family” without taking the time to really appreciate them as individuals. That led me to write a note that gave a brief glimpse into how I experience each of my siblings and the special way each one has touched my heart and helped me grow. I have 12 siblings so the note took a while! It was well received and I encourage each of you to follow your impulses to share your love and feelings with the people you care about. Taking a step beyond our culturally accepted and safe expressions is scary, but so worth the effort. I’m learning that I frequently censor myself, fearful of being judged too “mushy” or overly sentimental. The truth is that we all need to hear how much we are loved and appreciated by those around us. Words have tremendous power and they can be such an agent for good. Choose your words wisely and use them often. I believe that love can change our world.

Dexter and took a nice long walk this morning and now he is snuggled under his blanket for a much-deserved sleep. He’s been up and on alert much more than normal so he was ready for a  crash day.

I’ve been toying with the idea of altering my route. After visiting my family in Oklahoma later this week, I realized I could easily drop down into Texas and pay a visit to the resting place of my parents in Fredericksburg, Texas. A few days after I started thinking about this, I mentioned it to my husband who strongly encouraged me to do so. He understands how meaningful family connections are and thought this would be a great opportunity to make the pilgrimage. A couple of days later, one of my nephews, Paul, posted a photo of my parent’s gravestone on Facebook. He and his lovely wife, Aleda, were on an anniversary trip to the area and had visited the site. No members of our family live in the town where they rest, so it is always a blessing to receive the news that someone has visited. I took this as a sign that I was being prompted to make the trip. This morning I met a lovely couple, Gary and Diane J., who live not far from Fredericksburg.  My Angels are persistent in their promptings so I guess it’s time for me to listen! I’m researching route changes and making reservations at area campgrounds. This little side trip as it turns out will also give me an opportunity to see my brother John, his wife Tracy, their daughter Robyn and her husband James and daughter, Rose. I’m going to meet them in Burleson, TX just south of Fort Worth.

I’m also hoping to catch up with my nephew Paul and his family since they live just an hour and a half from Fredericksburg.  And it turns out my friend Janice in Kerrville, TX will also be in town and up for a Wild Thing visit! I am so fortunate to have family and friends all around the country and love meeting new people along the way.  Gary and Diane J., the nice folks I met this morning, own an Airbnb property so if you are traveling in the Austin, TX area, check out this place:  Curly J Hilltop Mini-Ranch.  I traveled quite a bit using AirBnB before I got the Wild Thing and find it’s a good alternative to hotels.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone, I count each of you among my many blessings and I’m grateful that you are sharing this journey with me. I’ll share my revised itinerary when it’s ready!

Day 1, 334 Miles, Dexter Riding Shotgun

The sun has set on the first day of our grand adventure and we are cozied into the WalMart Super Center parking lot in Wilkes Barre, PA.  It was a balmy 55F and raining at 7 AM this morning as I hitched up the camper in Ashland, MA. The experience I gained on the trip home from Chilliwack has all finally meshed and I’m feeling at ease and confident with the procedures. Things went so smoothly in fact, that I had to triple check using my checklists. I thought I must be missing something because it was all just too easy! Dexter was eager to get started and felt right at home in his jump seat in the truck. He has traveled by car to Florida with me twice so he’s an old hand at road trips.

We left at 7:45 AM and headed to the Mass Pike (I90). It was still pouring rain but traffic was light.

I stopped at the first rest stop on the highway just to check inside the trailer to be sure all the cupboards had remained closed and all items were secure. I have never had an issue with this trailer, but I remember my Dad doing this in his trailer whenever he repacked.  I like the peace of mind knowing there isn’t some object flinging itself around inside the trailer as I drive!

The truck is riding a bit lower than before, which is not surprising since I now have all my craft supplies with me! It’s kind of poetic that I parked next to this rig at a rest stop.

I stopped at the Lee, MA rest stop to gas up and it was frigid! The temp had dropped to 34F and there were flurries mixed in with the rain. Granted this was in the Berkshire Mountains, but yikes, I think I’m getting out just in time.

Dexter was very comfortable riding shotgun today. He stayed in his front jump seat for most of the journey today down I90 to I87, then I84 to I81. The temps rose to 45F and the rain stopped an hour before we arrived here in Wilkes Barre, PA. Along I87, I saw two jet black chickens scratching and pecking along the highway embankment. What a crazy sight! There were no houses in sight, so maybe they have escaped captivity and are now free range chickens, or perhaps they just…crossed the road…

A message popped up on the truck today telling me that a brake light has gone out. I’ll need to get that fixed when I unhitch the trailer. It’s nice that the system in the truck can let you know when there are things that need attention! The brake lights are working fine on the camper so I’m still in good shape.

I met a lovely couple as soon as we arrive here for the night. Matt and Adrianne M. took the grand tour of Wild Thing. They are dreaming of a camper of their own and were impressed with the Escape. She is pretty fine and I do love it when folks show an interest. I love meeting new people!

It’s going to be a cold night, down in the low 30’s, but we will keep driving south and soon the temps will rise. Dexter and I are comfortable and warm in our cozy little house on wheels.   I have the lounge area set up so he can snuggle while I work on the post!

I’m  tired tonight after all the excitement of the last few days but so happy to be on the road. I’ll get a good rest tonight and be ready for what awaits tomorrow!