January 20 to February 14, 2014 NOMADS Project, Mercedes, MS

February 15 (Approximately) to June - Gate Guarding, TX or LA.

June, 2014 - Up to Alaska!

September - NOMADS Annual Meeting, Branson, MO

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Almost Boondocking

North Scituate,  RI

A trip that should have taken 5 hours took us 7.5 on Monday.  We left Saylorsville, PA at 10 am.   We drove about 40 miles on Rt 209 to find the remaining 15 miles to connect to I84 was closed due to flooding and downed trees.  Really would have appreciated some signage warning of us this.

We got turned around.  A few miles up the road the Pressure Pro warned us that a trailer tire was losing pressure.  We found a service station to air up only to find they had no electric.   Len got out our compressor and generator and aired the tire.

I used our GPS to find the nearest entrance to I84, about 22 miles away.    It was up a narrow winding road.   About five miles later, off goes the Pressure Pro again.   This time we found a closed restaurant and pulled into the parking lot where Len changed the tire.

Eventually this narrow road turned to PA402 which was not bad.  We connected with I84 and headed East.  In Newburg, NY we pulled off and found a Firestone Store.   The problem with the tire was that the valve split.   Cost to fix only a little over $15.00.

Off we go again.  After stopping at a rest area in CT for a late lunch, we finally made it to our exit from I84 only to find a detour sign.  We pulled over so I could look at a map.   As we pulled over a car stopped in front of us and a nice gentleman came back to us and asked where we wanted to go.  He said to follow him and he would get us back on CT 74 which connected to Rt 44 our destination.

When we got to the light at our turn off, he again got out of his car and came back to us to be sure we were then okay and knew to turn.  How nice of him.

We finally got to Camp Aldersgate a little after 5:30!    Two of the other couples were already here.  One couple was visiting nearby relatives.  The other couple came out to greet us and tell us soup and grilled cheeses sandwiches would be waiting for us after we got set up.  SUPER!

Another couple is to arrive today.  They left VA yesterday morning.

We found most of our route in PA took us through areas with no power.   Few people in this area have power, including us.   We were told yesterday the earliest would be Monday.   Our generator is being put to use for sure.   The campground every few days will hook up a generator to their water pump so we all can fill our potable tanks.

Yesterday we spent the entire day picking up and piling fallen branches and cutting down trees about to tumble and clearing paths in the woods.   OUCH on the sore muscles.

I am getting a good Internet connection this morning for the first time.   Took pictures but no time to post.   Phone coverage comes and goes.   Almost time to start another work day.   Weather is great.  The camp director's (husband and wife) are great.   Last night they grilled turkey and potatoes and made a salad and corn for a much appreciated meal.  I contributed some  brownies I quickly made.

Time to head to our morning meeting and start another day of "heavy working".   Take care everyone.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

I think I made a wrong turn.

Saylorsville,  PA

We decided on Thursday we needed to get out of CT/RI.   So, in my infinite wisdom I plotted a route west.   We ended up in the Pocono Mountains of PA.  

What do we have?     Trees down.    A swollen river that was a stream when we arrived right behind us.  Lots and lots of rain.   A steady breeze with occasional gusts.  What don't we have?  Electric, water, WiFi.     We still have sewer, but hey that could change.  Let's see tomorrow morning when we attempt to dump.

We now have the generator running for the next two hours.   I wanted online, Len wants TV.  To clarify, we do have water.   I suggested we fill the potable tank before we left CT, just in case.   So to my thinking it's a draw.    I chose to come here; I chose to fill the water tank.

Tomorrow we will call Camp Aldersgate in RI and see if it is clear to come over to start our project.   Hope so and that we have electric there.  We are told it will be 5-7 days before power is restored here.

I have lots of pics but fear it would just take too long to upload.  Leaving that for another day.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Got outta Dodge

Saylorsburg, PA

Just when you think you are organized here comes another challenge.  (And more expenses too).

 We were due at Camp Aldersgate in Rhode Island today to get prepared for a NOMADS project on Monday.     So where are we?   About 255 miles southwest.     We decided last night after watching frightening weather reports regarding Hurricane Irene headed up the east cost, that we needed to pack up, pick up and move on down the road.

First we drove over to the camp this morning and talked to our contact.    We also called the other team members and told them to find a safe place and stay there until further notice.    Hopefully we can head back that way on Monday.

We got on the road at 11 am.   We headed south on I395 to I95 (after missing the route we really wanted to take).   From I95 in New Haven we picked up Rt 34  to  I84 west to Port Jervis NY.   We then took Rt 209 south into Pennsylvania to our present location, arriving at 4:45 exhausted and stressed.

We will keep a check on the weather forecast here to see if we need to move again as I just checked  and saw where to center of the storm  has moved to the west side of Connecticut instead of closer to Rhode Island which was predicted yesterday.

Did we move only to have this thing move along with us?    It is now starting to rain.  We drove through several heavy rainfalls on the way here.  

I am concerned about my daughters and their families in NJ and MD.   I keep hearing frightening predictions about the southern New Jersey, around the Atlantic City area.  My NJ daughter and husband live just 40 miles from there.

Keep safe all.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The road ends.

West Thompson Lake, CT

No, not our road.   So there was an earthquake in the northeast yesterday.   We hear on the news that people in Providence, RI felt it.  We are about 30 miles west of Providence.  Never felt a thing.  And  I do know what earthquakes feel like.

 In 1992 I was at a Human Resource Conference in Las Vegas.  One hit in the LA area around 3 in the morning.   Woke me up.  Another one hit in northern Nevada around 8.   I sure felt that one too.

After hearing about the one yesterday I called my daughters.  The daughter who lives in NJ had been trying to call me but could not get a cell connection.   She was in her Eddystone PA office and felt it.  My MD daughter felt it in MD.  She lives about 50 miles from DC.  The granddaughters were taking their naps and it did not wake them.   This daughter lived in the San Francisco area in 1989 when the World Series quake hit.  So she really knows what they feel like.

The road ending I am referring to is the road that used to be where Lake Thompson is now.  We took a walk along that path yesterday.

You can see the old asphalt.

The path juts into the lake about 1/4 of a mile where it stops.

 There are signs of where it continued on what used to be dry ground.

And that, friends, was our most exciting part of the day  - we never left the campground.

We did take our usual short walk around the camping area.   We had noticed a couple camping in a tent ever since we arrived.  They were outside and we stopped to talk.   They are not just camping here - they are homeless.   COE parks only allow a two week stay at a site.  So they move their tent and few belongings every two weeks.

The man works part time as a care taker for a man with Lou Gehrig's disease.  We invited the woman over to our site while we sat around the campfire last night.  She is just 53 years old.  She had worked but was laid off a few years back. Once her unemployment ran out, she found herself homeless.  She told us she has been in psychiatric hospitals in the past.     This park closes in two weeks and they don't know where they will be staying.   They said probably will be sleeping in their car.   I have to wonder about their road.    Where will it end.   And I reflect on how fortunate most of us are and what it would be like to be in such a situation.

We leave tomorrow and head to Rhode Island.   We will be keeping an eye on the tracking of Hurricane Irene.  Should she head up into the New England area, we will pull up stakes and head as far inland as possible.

Until next time.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Drawing up plans

West Thompson Lake, CT

Yesterday we attended this church in nearby Putnam CT.

How good is was to see an almost full church.  The pastor gave a good sermon and the people really sang.   After the service we talked to a few members and gave them  NOMADS brochures.    We briefly spoke to the pastor and gave her one too.

We took a short drive after lunch and stopped for ice cream.   On the drive we saw these structures and wondered what they once were part of.

Then we talked about where we would head once we were done with our NOMADS project in Rhode Island.  (Hence part of the reason for today's title - drawing up plans).     We had thought about moving further up into New England but we are finding so many campgrounds are closing in October and some even early September.

We are now thinking of West Virginia for a spell.   I see they have several COE parks down there.  Some appear to stay open until late November.  However, not all COE parks have water and electric hookups or can accommodate a 38' rig.  

Today we felt it was time to finally take a long walk down to the lake from our campsite.  The walk took about an hour and a half.  Good up and down hill exercise.

The dam.

The lake.

The amphitheater

The other reason for today's title.   We really like the picnic tables here.  On one end, room for a wheelchair.  On the other end, a child's seat.

Len spent the afternoon taking measurements and drawing up plans.  These plans will go with others he wants to built at some future time.

While he was daydreaming of building the table, I made our dinner of meatloaf, mac and cheese and collards.  YUM!

We spent the early evening around our campfire until the mosquitos got to us.  Tomorrow is another day.  Life is good!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chillin and grillin

West Thompson Lake, CT.

Today was just one on those lazy, lazy days here at


 In the morning we went to Walmart for Len's prescriptions.    We tried to get a refill while in NY.    They said they would fill it but the remaining 4 refills would be cancelled.   This is an accordance with NY State Law.

Even though we have our prescriptions through Walmart, in NY the prescription must originate at the Walmart where it is filled.   Sheesh!  We've filled prescriptions in AZ, TX, LA, GA, NJ and never an issue.   Needless to say, we waited until we got to Connecticut to get it filled.

Then we took a ride over to RI and found the camp we will be working at starting on the 29th.  It is only about 22 miles from here.

After all that morning excitement this is what one of us did.

In the meantime, Lucky was content just waiting for something to fly by.

While one of us did this:

All was not lost because later in the day he did this:

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Our last few days in the Adirondacks.

Lake Thompson, CT

Welcome to Jeff Simmons our newest follower!   Good to see you here.

As usual, Sunday we sought out and attended to local United Methodist Church.   This is Whitehall, New York UMC.

Like so many other nice churches we've attended, it is disheartening  to see a lovely church with such few attendees.   By my count there were around 22 people in attendance.    Sad!

In the afternoon we took a short walk up to look at the locks.   We were just a bit too late as a boat had just gone through.   This is lock 12 of 12 on the canal that connects Lake George with Lake Champlain.

This is the marina that is part of the RV park.

For most of the afternoon I sat outside watching the Kingfishers dive in the water for their meal and this young Blue Heron prancing around.   Have to look close - he's in the middle of the picture.

 It rained, sometimes quite heavy, all day Monday.  All we did was drive over to Lake George to the Walmart for supplies.

On Tuesday we went to

For the time spanning the French and Indian War and the Revolution, this post of Lake Champlain guarded the narrow water highway connecting Canada with the colonies.  Whichever nation controlled Ticonderoga controlled America.

Demonstrating the loading and firing of muskets.

The fort fell into ruin after the Revolution. The rebuilding of the fort was started in 1908 by the Pell family.

Outside the actual fort, they planted the Kings Garden.  I especially liked this.  It is an area of child size Adirondack chairs nestled in Sunflowers.

We spent most of Wednesday visiting again with our friends Ginny and Chris at their lake home in Crown Point, NY.

From left Ginny, her friend from NJ Kathy, Chris and Len.  From their deck overlooking Lake Champlain

We left NY this morning at 10 and drove 205 miles to a COE park Lake Thompson in northeast Connecticut.   This is a very small campground - just 11 sites with water and 30 amp and 11 primitive sites.   I am getting great Internet connection but unfortunately there are too many tall trees and we are unable to receive a satellite signal for our TV.

We will see what the week brings.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Old Stone Fort then reconnecting with old friends.

Whitehall,  NY

Not sure if I will be able to upload pictures.  Very slow connection here in the Adirondacks.

We left Central Bridge, about 105 miles from here, on Friday.   Before leaving we spent a part of Thursday nearby in the town of Schoharie touring the Museum at the Old Stone Fort.   Quite a bargain - $5.00/$4.10 seniors.

Old Stone Fort was originally built as a High Dutch Reformed Church in 1772.

After a 1777 uprising of Indians and Amercians loyal to the King, a wooden stockade was constructed around the building, garrisoned by Continental soldiers in 1778 and 1779.   After the war it was reverted back to a church.  In 1857 it was sold to the State of NY and used as an armory until after the Civil War.
 In 1873 the state gave it to the county of Schoharie and in 1888 it was organized as a museum.   There are extensive displays on both floors of the building.

Since that time other historic buildings were brought to the property:  A 1863 school house, a 1786 home of one of the counties first settlers, a 1780 Dutch barn, a 1830 law office, a 1830 Greek Revival house and a 1860 carriage house.   I took pictures of each of these buildings and wanted to post, but it is taking too long to upload and my Sprint Mobile Hot Spot is on roaming and I have a limit on my roaming time.

On Friday we headed to Whitehall NY where we will stay until Thursday.   Whitehall is the

That sign says - Birthplace of the UN Navy.   It would appear this town has a lot of history which we will explore this week.

We are camped at a very small RV park with 26 campsites.  At this time we are the ONLY people here.  The campground is part of Whitehall Marina.   About 1/4 mile from us is a series of locks connecting a river with  Lake Champlain.   The view from behind our rig.

Full hook ups with cable (we use our own satellite) a lovely view, a really nice guy who runs the marina and RV park, laundry facilities which is one washer and dryer with a metal box to deposit the money at just $2.00 to wash and dry.   Also a book lending shelf and lots of literature for nearby attractions.   This is a Passport America park.  We paid $30.00 a night for Friday and Saturday (normal price is $40.00) and $20.00 a night for rest of week.  We like this place.

We noticed some areas are sort of boggy.   Our friends who live in the area told us this place was underwater back in the spring.   We since noticed a few buildings have water marks about 2 feet up.

Once we got settled I called those friends, Ginny and Chris Crowfoot, who have a summer home about 32 miles from here in Crown Point, NY.  They moved from NJ many years ago to Sundown, a small town in the Catskills.   In 2000 they found an ideal summer home on Lake Champlain.   I saw pictures of what it looked like then - overgrown, in disrepair.  A project I would have looked the other way on.  They took on the challenge and have a delightful little haven sitting on 4.5 acres of beautiful lakeside property with a huge deck overlooking the lake and even a small fishing pier.

From their deck:

The house:

Our friends Ginny and Chris:

On Friday they came to the campground and we went OUT FOR DINNER.  On Saturday we went to their house and we went OUT FOR DINNER.   This is just too much fun!

I would love to post more pictures but it is taking too much time.  Until next time.....

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A special blog for Tom and Sam

Milford,   NY

This blog is for our friends Tom Ayers and Sam Weibel.   They are both railroad buffs. 

Today we rode the

The Cooperstown and Charlotte Valley Railroad began operations on July 14, 1869.   It was purchased by the Leatherstocking RR Historical Society in 1997 after laying dormant for two decades.

Milford Depot built in 1869.

The engine is former Canadian National, Alco Montreal  Locomotive Works S4-#3051 built in 1956.

The passenger cars were built in 1920's by the Pullman Car Manufacturing Co and used as commuter cars for the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western RR out of Hoboken,  NJ

The dining and souvenir car is a former Delaware and Hudson Passenger Coach built in 1916.

The Leatherstocking RR Historical Society owns 16 miles of RR but at the current time only 8 miles are in operation.   The train runs from Milford to Cooperstown with one stop at the Cooperstown Dreams Park Baseball Camp.

The park opened in 1996 for Little League Teams to compete in week long tournaments.  There are 26 playing fields.  Each week of the 12 week season, 1,800 players and coaches travel to this camp.

The railroad line runs parallel to, and twice crosses over, the Susquehanna River.

It surprised us to learn what we thought was a small stream running next to the RR, is actually the Susquehanna.   We are used to seeing this river in PA and MD where it is wide and actually looks like a river.   Susquehanna means winding river.  It starts at Lake Otsego in Cooperstown and continues, growing larger all the time, until it finally empties into the Chesapeake Bay 445 miles away.

The entire trip with stops once at the Cooperstown Dreams Park to pick up passengers and then to a Trolley parking lot near Cooperstown where the engine disengages and then reconnects at the opposite end, took a little over 2 1/2 hours.  It was well worth the fee of $14.00/$13.00 Seniors.

Another one for your list of places to see, Tom and Sam!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Farmers Museum

Central Bridge,  NY

Pleased to see Mike and Pat McFall as newest followers.   Mike and Pat are distributors for the Pressure Pro Tire Monitoring System.    We would not be without it.   It is a sad fact but most RV manufacturers put inferior, cheap tires on their rigs.    In our first year traveling with our Montana we had to replace all four tires.  Twice we were close to blowouts but the Pressure Pro System saved our butts!    We tell everyone we know that does not have a tire monitoring system,  get one ASAP.    And if you are looking for a professional distributor, give the McFall's a try.

Yesterday we drove over to Cooperstown, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame.   We are not huge fans of baseball and tend to only follow it when the Phillies are in the playoffs or World Series.   Wasn't too sure if touring the Hall of Fame would be of interest, so instead we went to The Farmers Museum.  Cost - $12.00/ $10.50 Seniors.

The museum sits of 120 aches that overlook Otsego Lake.  The museum has a world-renown collection of artifacts related to farm life and communities, particularly those that document 19th century agricultural technology.

In the lobby of the Museum Entry building is this display.  A hoax that traveled with P.T. Barnum show.  On a side note:   When my second cousin did extensive research on our families genealogy,  P. T. Barnum appears.

There are 29 structures in the complex including a working farm and farmhouse.   The building were originally built from the late 1700's to the mid 1800's and moved here for educational purposes.

Federal Style More House built in 1818 outside Roxbury, Delaware County, NY.

Bump tavern built around 1795 in Windham, NY.  The Greek Revival porch was added in 1843.

The one newer structure is The Empire State Carousel.  It was started in 1980 and took over 20 years to complete.  More than a 1,000 volunteer artisans from across NY worked on it.

No farmyard is complete without Momma hen and her chicks.

We found these ducks very beautiful with the sleek black coloring with green and blue tones in the neck.  Does anyone what they are called?