Myrtle Beach, SC

September 29, 2016

We left Wilmington, NC around 10:00 AM. Overcast skies, but a very easy drive to Myrtle Beach.20160929_090239This is the drawbridge across the Cape Fear River.20160929_090254Good-bye downtown Wilmington. This is a very nice city. We enjoyed the visit.20160929_100124Welcome to South Carolina. We drove down Hwy 17 and it was a great road.20160929_105314Arrived at the Myrtle Beach Moose Lodge and the sun came out.20160929_105315This is a very active lodge. They had pizza night on Thursday night and this place was packed.20160929_114609The inside is painted for the beach.20160929_114603It is big and October 1st, it becomes non-smoking.  They have lost some members because of that, but I bet they will gain more because of it too.20160929_133039It was suggested that we drive down to Murrells Inlet. It was a short drive.20160929_133018Once we got there, we discovered it was Bike Week at Myrtle Beach.20160929_133029Bikes and stages everywhere. Pretty Cool.

Friday September 30, 201620161001_090119We decided to go to Huntington Beach State Park and ride our bikes. It has been a while and we really wanted to get back on the bikes. The waters you cross going into the park are full of alligators.  There is one in that grass, but it is hard to see.20161001_090202Several were just watching the people and waiting for someone to make a misstep. We had a nice ride on a very nice bike path along Hwy. 17.20160930_125009And the bikes were out everywhere.  The weather was beautiful.20160930_125016This bike had its own trailer.20160930_125041There was parking everywhere. I don’t think I have ever seen this many bikes at one time.

Saturday October 1, 2016

We went back to Huntington Beach State Park to ride our bikes.  Plus we packed a picnic lunch and our beach chairs. Changed into our suits at the bathhouse and spent a few hours on the beach.20161001_104031It was wonderful and peaceful and just what we needed.20161001_104040This beach is less crowded.  It costs $5.00 a person to come into the park, but it has a wonderful beach and a very nice park.20161002_121802This is our campsite for a few days at the Moose Lodge.  Not bad, 50 amp and water for $15.00 a night.20161002_121806A small pavilion next to us.

Sunday October 2, 2016

We decided to go to the Market Common to ride today.  This is a new shopping area with lots of shops, restaurants and residential houses. They also have the Grand Park Recreational Complex at the Market Common. There are multiple baseball/softball fields and walking/bike paths everywhere.  After our ride and showers, we headed to North Myrtle Beach to meet up with some of my oldest friends, Mark and LeAnn Hardy.  They live in Louisville and are here with 14 others for a golfing week.14542345_1844631019105667_3600461624109861510_o-1I was the maid-of-honor in their wedding 31 years ago.  I have been friends with them longer than anyone else, except Colette Akin. (I met her first and she introduced me to Mark.)  It was a blast seeing them and spending some time together.7014_1475460714472We got to meet the gang and we got to go to dinner with everyone. 7015_1475460722109It was such a great time.  I am hoping we get to see them again before we have to leave. It was great to meet Fred, Becky, Brandy, Chuck, Lisa, Larry, Steve, Chu, Angela, Wanda and Steve. Such a great group of people and much fun.

Also, there is a Hurricane heading our way.  Hurricane Matthew is gaining strength in the Caribbean and we are not sure how it will affect our plans.

Thanks for following along with us and we will keep you updated on the Hurricane.


Wilmington, NC

Thursday September 21, 2016 – Travel Day

Since we stayed at a Moose Lodge for the last 5 nights, we had to find a dump station along the way to Wilmington.  There is a Flying J on I-95 South, Exit 106 in North Carolina. It cost $7.50.  We got a Good Sam discount (it is listed as $10.00). That took about 20 minutes.  Easy in and out.  They have 2 dump stations with diesel right there too.

We arrived in Wilmington about 1:00.  We were not sure where to park, so we waited for Bill, the administrator to show up. 20160928_122043He set us up behind the Lodge.  We have 50 amp service and water.  There is a dump beside that bath house.  For $15.00 a night, you can’t beat this. Do you see the white square thing sticking up above our rig?  That is our Winegard Rayzar antenna.20160924_192838Check out the great picture we got from our Rayzar Antenna.  This was a square dancing competition being broadcast from Smithville, TN.  You can’t see it from this picture, but in the back, behind the man on stage, the Wilson Bank & Trust is one of the sponsors.  It seemed sort of weird to be on the coast of North Carolina and receive this broadcast from our little antenna.20160921_132823Moose Lodge outdoor pavilion.20160921_161422We decided on a local place for some fresh seafood. Fish Bites. I had Shrimp and Grits and Cliff had the Fish and Chips.  Both were very good.20160921_154857This is a very cute place and our waitress was very nice.20160921_164538Then off to Walmart where we found a Maserati in the parking lot.  You don’t see that very often.

Thursday September 22, 201620160927_124800It started raining last night and it is still raining today.  I made a pot roast in the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker.  In about 1.5 hours, we had the most tender and flavorful pot roast I have ever made.  It was wonderful and we ate it for 3 days. As Cliff said, “It’s a keeper”. Just send me a message if you want the recipe.  I also rented a movie from the RedBox at Walmart.  A Hologram for a King with Tom Hanks.  Pretty good.  I had a discount on my app, so we got it free.

Not much going on Friday and Saturday.  We had a free spagetti dinner at the Moose Lodge. New recruiting technique.  If you come to a Lodge meeting, they give you a ticket that can be used for a free meal on a Friday night. We did not attend any meetings, but they were being very nice to us and gave us the dinner anyway.  We did offer to pay, but they declined.  Saturday, I got a pedicure and a haircut.  I am not even going to tell us how upset I am about both.

Sunday September 25, 201620160925_092434We went to the NC Spot Festival.  We did not know what it was, but “when in Rome” right? The Spot is a small short-lived saltwater fish. The species inhabits coastal waters from Massachusetts to Texas and derives its name from the prominent spot behind each gill.20160925_092908There were camel rides.20160925_093053They also had ponies and goats, but who wants to ride a pony when you can ride a camel? There were vendors selling art and other items.  Some really cute stuff, but we have no where to put it.20160925_095651This was the Spot dinner for $8.00.  It was kind of fishy tasting and had a lot of bones.  But now we can say we had Spot.20160925_102233There were quit a few people here.  It had a very friendly small town feel to it.  Everyone was very friendly. We stayed a couple of hours.20160925_111233Then we drove to Wrightsville Beach20160925_1113260There was a very nice ocean breeze.20160925_111331Nice large sandy beach and not too crowded.  I wish I could bottle the sound of the ocean and add it as background music to this blog.  That would be cool. 20160925_112839The water was colder than I had expected.20160925_112846We had some nice waves. This is a beautiful place.  We had kind of forgotten how nice it is to walk on the beach and hear the sounds of the ocean.

Monday September 26, 201620160926_091119We took a ferry over to Southport, NC. It is only about a 14 mile drive to the ferry.  You can actually drive to Southport by car, but there is no fun in that.20160926_094746It was a beautiful day for a boat ride. The ferry is $5.00 a car, one-way. 20160926_094752We were right up front and this bird decided he needed a ride too.20160926_101504The construction of Fort Johnston was approved in 1745 to defend the Cape Fear River region’s British settlements from pirates and Spanish attackers.    Fort Johnston was originally built by the British in 1748.  Fort Johnston was conveyed to the city of Southport in 2006 after 250 years of federal service as the oldest active-duty fort in the United States.20160926_105545The town has a total area of 3.8 square miles. 20160926_102441The town was founded as Smithville in 1792 adjacent to the fort.  The town was named after Benjamin Smith, a colonel in the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War and later Governor of North Carolina.20160926_102219In an effort to promote the town as a major shipping port, the town changed it’s name to Southport in 1887.20160926_102209It is 596 miles to Key West and 581 miles to Nantucket.20160926_114910It is a charming town with a nice list of movies and TV shows filmed here. The Nicholas Sparks movies are A Walk to Remember, Nights of Rodanthe, and Safe Haven. Other movies like Crimes of the Heart and Summer Catch were also filmed here.  I think that is pretty impressive for 3.8 square miles.20160926_102720There is a nice walking Historic tour. 20160926_114020A late lunch at Provision Company at the Old Yacht Basin.  It is Monday and some restaurants are not open because it is now “off season”.20160926_113622You order at the counter.20160926_113632Find a seat and they bring the food to you.  It was very pleasant.  We both had the special, 1/4 lb of steamed shrimp with a deviled crab cake, with a drink for $7.95.20160926_130025Back to the ferry ride to Fort Fisher Ferry Terminal. We probably should have taken the ferry to Bald Head Island, but we were running out of time.  The only way to the island is by ferry and no cars allowed. So the only means of transportation on the island are bicycles, golf carts and your own 2 feet.  Sounds very cool and maybe we will make it another time.20160926_130021We passed a big container ship on its way to the ocean.20160926_131922A beautiful drive back along Carolina Beach Road.20160926_131926Right on the ocean.20160926_132147The town of Kure Beach is very nice and colorful. This house is really Purple, but it does not show up that bright in this picture.20160926_132259A very contemporary house being built right on the beach.  It was a beautiful day.

Tuesday September 27, 201620160927_184446Moose Lodge #343.  Draft beer special on Tuesday night.20160927_182826It is a nice large lodge with pool tables and shuffleboard tables.20160927_182821They also host a game called Feather Your Nest.  It is similar to Bingo.  You pay $1.00 a card for 2 rounds of play.  If you cover all 3 cards on your card, you win. First round paid $10.00 and second round paid $11.00.  I won $10.00 once. It was fun, fast and easy to play.

We have really enjoyed our time here in Wilmington.  This is a great Moose Lodge and I hope they can encourage more members to join. The bartenders are very nice and Bill, the administrator was a perfect gentleman.

We are off to Myrtle Beach on Thursday.  Until then, Cheers!


North Carolina

September 16, 2016

We left Williamsburg, VA on Friday morning heading to North Carolina.20160916_091722We crossed a beautiful bridge on I-295, south of Richmond.20160916_091727Over the James River.20160916_101618Then down I-95 into the state of North Carolina, the Nation’s Most Military Friendly State. I did not know that.  That is pretty cool.20160916_164120We were lucky enough to get hook ups at the Wilson Moose Lodge.20160917_16311230 amp with water.20160918_143712The whole parking lot to ourselves.20160918_143650They have a swimming pool at this lodge.  They had just closed it down for the season.  It is very nice.20160917_163210The outside.20160916_162955The lodge is nice and big on the inside.  They have a full menu on Friday nights.20160916_165706They have nice bar decorations and the white wine is always served in a chilled glass.  I really like that. This Moose Lodge had a lot going on.  Everyone was so friendly.  It is nice to be back in the South.20160916_195915They had karaoke on Friday night and this couple are Full Time RVers’.  They were in town  for only one night and did not know that this Moose Lodge had hookups.  They have been workamping for the past 11 years and love it. We exchanged contact information and they are going to give us some advice on places they have workamped.

Saturday September 17, 201620160917_104747We drove to Raleigh, NC this morning.  The Crepe Myrtles are beautiful along the interstate.  I have never seen so many in one place.  North Carolina is full of them in all different colors.  We had to do some errands in the city.  It was a very pleasant experience until we had to go to Camping World.  The parking lot was extremely tight and I don’t see how some of those rigs made it in and out.  We had purchased a zero gravity lounge chair for me last May (2015).  The sides are tied on with elastic cords.  Well, one broke.  We thought we could take it back, but Camping World only has a 60 day return policy.  Wow.  So anyway, it did not go well.  The rest of the day was great.

We went to the Moose Lodge to watch football.  Oh, and by the way, if you missed it: University of Louisville beat Florida State 63-10.  Go Cards Go!  I will be watching the Clemson / UofL game in 2 weeks.


Sunday September 18, 2016 – Rocky Mount, NC20160918_121615We have been so blessed this year to be able to visit with family twice in one year. My first cousin, Claire Greer, is married to Rev. George Greer.  They live in Rocky Mount and George is the Rector at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church.  We got to go church with them twice this year.  Claire’s mother, my Aunt Stevie, is picture above holding Claire’s granddaughter, Anna Claire.20160918_121624I love being around this part of my family.  My Aunt Stevie is one of the sweetest people I know.  The whole family is so much fun to be around. We never seem to run our of conversation.20160918_1216260Cliff and I always have such a good time and love the time we have had together this year.  Anna Claire is so sweet and mellow.  She loves everyone.20160918_121938This is Anna Claire’s parents, Sarah Katherine and Brandon.  Such a sweet couple. 20160918_122651Here is 4 generations. Great grandfather, Bob.  Anna Claire just adores him and his hair.  Grandfather George is to the right, she adores him too.  And Sarah Katherine and Brandon in the back.  We had a wonderful lunch and we are sorry that we have to miss the snow sledding hills they are having at the church in a couple of weeks.  It was a wonderful way to spend a Sunday.

You can also go back to our first visit this past spring by clicking here. Rocky Mount, NC

Monday September 19, 201620160919_083923It is laundry day.  This was a wonderful laundromat, very clean and lots and lots of washers and dryers.  This is the Wash House, 2700 Downing St. SW in Wilson, NC. It was right around the corner from the Moose Lodge.  If you are ever in Wilson and need to do laundry, we highly recommend this one.20160919_083941We read a lot of RV blogs and laundry is a topic that is discussed a lot.  We, personally, do not mind going to the laundromat.  Some people just cringe when they think about it.  Talk about meeting the locals.  It usually only takes an hour and we can get 2-3 loads of laundry washed, dried and folded.  Sometimes we meet some really nice people at the laundromat. It is not all bad. We spend between 6.00 – 8.00 a trip.  If you stay in a campground, most of the time it is less expensive. The trade off is the washer and dryers are usually smaller than these, so it takes longer and cost almost the same.

Tuesday September 20, 201620160920_114325It has been raining for 2 days. Since laundry was done yesterday, there is not much to do so we decided to go have lunch.  Bill Ellis’ Barbecue was right around the corner.  This is a serious Barbecue joint. 20160920_111341They have Bill’s Buffet, which is a buffet restaurant with all the fixins.  They even have a whole pig that you pull the meat yourself.20160920_111346They have a separate drive-thru and walk up.20160920_114332The Tuesday special was interesting.20160920_111350They have a convention center next door.  Bill does a  lot of catering.20160920_114552Bill’s World Famous Barbecue and Chicken has a fleet of 25 patented mobile kitchens. All of the mobile catering equipment has been specifically designed by Bill to deliver fast, hot, freshly prepared meals from coast to coast.  They transport the hogs in a refrigeration area and are cooked fresh once they get to their destination.  Even in California.  It was good barbecue.  Another place we would recommend if you are going to Wilson, NC.

Tomorrow we are off to Wilmington, NC.  Maybe the sun will come out.

Norfolk, Virginia

Wednesday September 14, 2016

I am going to try to catch up.  Cliff suggested that I try to post more often with less content.  So I am going to give it a go.

On this beautiful Wednesday morning.  I ordered combo tickets online for the Victory Rover Naval Base Cruise.  The cruise is a 2 hour fully narrated ride along the  Elizabeth River, which flows into the Chesapeake Bay.  We choose the 11:00 cruise.  They also offer one that departs at 2:00.  After the cruise, our tickets get us into Nauticus museum and the USS Wisconsin.20160914_093315Off this point in the Elizabeth River is the zero mile buoy marking the beginning of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. 20160914_093340Apparently, it is there somewhere.  This is from Downtown Norfolk.20160914_100651An aircraft carrier being worked on.20160914_100953The Elizabeth River.  It is so pretty.

20160914_101316This Ship cost 75 million dollars.  You read that correctly. That is pretty hard to believe, I know.  It is privately owned by Charles Simonyi.  As of June 2016, he is estimated to be worth 1.6 Billion, so he can afford this yacht.  He was a software developer for Microsoft when he started there in 1981. He was the chief architect of Microsoft Word & Excel and created the Microsoft Office Suite.  He left in 2002. The yacht’s name is SKAT.  You can google that for more pictures.20160914_102134There are sailboats that give sunset cruises.20160914_102412This is Naval Hospital in Portsmouth, Virginia.  My father was stationed there in the early 50’s.  It is the oldest continuously running hospital in the Navy Medical system.  What you see is the original part.  The high tower to the left is part of the newest section of the hospital.20160914_102627You are looking at 3 ships tied together.  The one is the middle is the back end.  It has a door that drops down to the water, so other boats can drive into it’s lower section.  Amazing!20160914_103550This is hard to see, but this de-magnetizes ships. They pull the ships between the two dock looking things and the white building in the background does all the work.20160914_103703Cargo ships being loaded.  The one of the left is Maersk Line, a Danish business.  It is the global container division and the largest operating unit of A.P. Moller/Maersk Group. It is the worlds largest container shipping company.

The one on the right is Cosco, which stands for China Ocean Shipping Company.  It is a government-owned company of the People’s Republic of China.  It ranks sixth largest in number of container ships.20160914_103812With all of these huge ships, they have to dredge the Elizabeth River.  They suck the stuff off the bottom with a large vacuum and it is deliver through a pipeline under water to an area outside the channel.20160914_104747Another large shipping company, Hapag-Lloyd. This is a German company. It is the world’s fifth largest container carrier in terms of vessel capacity20160914_110318Now to the Norfolk Naval Base.  The world’s largest naval station.  I am so glad we took this cruise, because we would not have been able to see all of this if we had not.20160914_110352This is hard to see, but there is a submarine in the water to the left of the dock.  It has some type of cargo on the front nose and it is mostly submerged.20160914_110406These are Destroyers.20160914_111847This is an aircraft carrier.  This is MASSIVE!20160914_113004This is the newest ship in the Navy fleet.  Our captain got very excited when we came across this.  Apparently, it was not here yesterday and he was all a flutter about it. Most technically advanced ship ever built.

Don’t mess with the US now.20160914_113539There were lots of helicopters and different types of planes flying around during our cruise.  Those are V-22 Osprey.20160914_113555Today, the Navy operates two dedicated hospital ships.  This is the USNS Comfort, launched in 1987.  The USNS Mercy was converted in 1986.  Both ships were converted supertankers. They are huge, equivalent to the height of a 10-story building and the length of three football fields with a crew of 1.200. 20160914_113713And just a pretty sailboat.20160914_114858There goes the COSCO container ship that we saw earlier.  The tug boat leads them out of the Elizabeth River.20160914_115000That is a lot of containers.20160914_120557That is the USS Wisconsin.  One of the largest and last battleships ever built by the US Navy.20160914_13175620160914_131809I don’t think I would like working in that building in front of this ship with the guns pointed at my window.20160914_13205120160914_132116This is crazy big.20160914_132338The flag poles at the bow and stern are called staffs.  On the stern, it’s a flag staff and flies the national colors or “ensign”.  Here in the bow, it’s the jackstaff and the flag it flies is a “jack”.  Jacks and ensigns are only flown on staffs when the sip is not underway.20160914_132343The blue jack with the white stars is the “Union Jack” and was used by the Navy until after the September 11, 2001 attacks, when the Navy began flying the “Don’t Tread On Me” jack.  This Union Jack is still flown on the Wisconsin since it was flown during her active service.20160914_133843There was a machine shop inside this ship.20160914_141641Cliff’s mermaid with all the tour stickers on her.

I hope you enjoyed the tour of Norfolk Naval station.  We enjoyed the day.

Until our next post. Cheers!







Williamsburg and Jamestown

September 201620160911_105316Colonial Williamsburg – This is one of the most impressive historical sites we have been able to visit.

This stop was suggested by Lorie and Mackie Shanks at our going away party last December.  Well, we finally made it.

In 1926,  the Reverend Dr. W.A.R. Goodwin, rector of Bruton Parish Church, shared his dream of preserving the city’s historic buildings with philanthropist John D. Rockefeller Jr., and the restoration began.20160911_110411The visitor center was full of knowledgeable and helpful people.  The ladies at the information desk are so patient with first time visitors.  They explained all the options and what was happening this day. 20160911_110514Meet Liberty. Liberty is a Briard, a breed that George Washington would have owned in the 1770’s.20160913_090237Williamsburg was the Capital of the Virginia Colony from 1699 to 1780. This is America’s oldest and largest live interactive history experience. There is something different going on everyday.  We were going to get a 3 day pass, but they are running a special fall promotion.  We got a pass that is good until the end of the year for less than the 3 day pass.20160913_095510This is such a great place for children (and adults) to learn.  This was the kitchen at the Governor’s Palace.  The cook was one of the highest paid servants at the Palace.20160913_095520He was demonstrating what and how they would cook for the Governor and his guests.20160913_095211The Governor’s Palace.  The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is a private, not-for-profit educational institution that receives no regular state or federal funding.  It is not a state or national park.20160913_100231This was the home to seven royal governors (appointed by the King of England) and the first 2 elected governors in Virginia, Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson.  It was built to impress.20160913_100106Beautiful and elaborate gardens.20160913_100218Lt. Gov. Alexander Spotswood continued to make additions, including elaborate gardens in 1720- 1722.20160913_100730In 1780, the capital of Virginia was moved to Richmond for security reasons during the American Revolution.  On December 22, 1781, the main building of the Governor’s Mansion was destroyed by fire.  It was rebuilt in the 1930’s based on the buildings foundation that was still in the ground and other extensive research.20160913_105037John Murray, 4th Earl of Dunmore had an extensive collection of swords and rifles.20160913_105028Some of his collection decorate the main hall.20160913_110128Handpainted silk from England.20160913_110133Hand painted ceramic tiles around the fireplace.20160913_110138Beautiful antigues.20160913_110842King George III was the British monarch during Lord Dunmore’s time at Williamsburg.  As the guest entered the room, they bowed and curtsey to the King and Queen of England, as if they were there.20160913_110943This is one of 4 made in the world, a fold out keyboard.  That is not the proper term, but I cannot find it anywhere.20160913_110949Ornate architectural elements.20160913_111120A full restoration began in 1981.20160913_112600Along the Duke of Gloucester Street there are several taverns that provide food  and drinks.20160913_112605Susan Ingram suggested we go to Chowning Tavern for a Root Beer.20160913_114143So we did.20160913_112630Looks like a Welsh flag.20160913_120847Enjoy the Art Project. The link is on the screen.20160913_131105Every day they have different performances throughout the village.  One day we got to see a young Martha Washington.  You get a different program for everyday you might be there.  You have to then plan your day according to which performance you want to see and where it is in the village.  We got to see young Thomas Jefferson twice.  Kurt, is the actor that portrays him.  He was very good and really enjoys his job and has a great passion for it.  These live shows really get you into the period.  After the performance, which last 45 -60 minutes, they will take questions, either in or out of character.  It was great.20160913_133359There are houses in Colonial Williamsburg that are for rent to private individuals.  Check out the brick work on this house.20160913_133405They can rent up to $3,000 a month.20160913_133417There are horse-drawn carriage rides and then you might see some Colonist riding down the street on horseback.20160913_133833We were too early to eat at Kings Arms Tavern.20160913_142047This was the First Capitol of the Virginia Colony.

This whole educational place is incredible.  I can’t wait to come back.

Another day we took the tour of Historic Jamestowne.  This is a National Park and we have the Senior Pass that gets you in free at all National Parks. An entrance fee of $5.00 each was charged that goes to Preservation Virginia.20160912_113207We are running out of days, so we had to pick one.  There are 4 different sites between Jamestown and Yorktown.20160912_122518So we decided on Historic Jamestowne.  The site of America’s first permanent English settlement.20160912_124655This monument was erected in 1907 by the United States to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the Settlement here.20160912_124719Jamestown, the first permanent Colony of the English People, the birthplace of Virginia and the United States, May 16, 1607.20160912_124725It is a beautiful monument.20160912_124845This is the 1907 Jamestown Memorial Church.  It was erected to support the 17th-century church tower.20160912_131142This is the Archaeologist that guided our tour.  I could listen to him all day.  He knows so much about the excavations of the 1607 James Fort and the whole area.20160912_132442The James Fort was built right on the edge of the James River.20160912_133753There is a ferry that travels on the James River.20160912_133808Captain John Smith, Governor of Virginia in 1608.  This statue was erected in 1909.20160912_134008In 1893 Preservation Virginia acquired 22.5 acres on Jamestown Island, including the Old Church Tower, shown in the background.  The archaeologist here are discovering new evidence all the time.  They continue to received awards for the finds they are discovering.20160912_145959The 1907 Memorial Church was erected to protect the 1600’s Church Tower.20160912_144647In 1934, the National Park Service acquired the rest of the 1,500 acre island and jointly administers Jamestown with Preservation Virginia.20160912_140752They continue to find old wells with thousands of artifacts. When the wells are no longer useful, they were used as trash containers.  Now, 400 years later, they are finding enough items to fill a large museum.  Amazing.20160912_150056And there was also Pocahontas, who married John Rolfe in 1614.  Her marriage helped establish peaceful relations between the Powhatan Indians and the colonists.  In 1616, she visited England with Rolfe and their infant son Thomas, and was presented to the Royal Court.  She died on March 21, 1617 and was buried in St. George’s Church in Gravesland, England.

20160912_142053Somehow, I forgot to add this photo of a glass arrowhead.  It was made by Virginia Indians. It was found on the James Fort site.

This is definitely worth a visit, just to listen to the archaeologist working on the site.  They are discovering new things all the time.

Next visit is to Norfolk.

Cool Friends, Dinner and an Air Show

Thursday September 8, 2016

We had to leave Ashland because Americamps was booked for the NASCAR race this weekend.  We moved 51 miles to Williamsburg RV and Camping Resort.20160908_133700This is a Thousand Trails campground.  We are not Thousand Trails members, but they give Passport America member discounts. So we got 50% off everyday except Friday and Saturday.  It is a good thing, because there was not much to like about this campground.20160908_13371450 amp, water, sewer, No cable and No internet.  When you get to a Thousand Trails campground, you park by the office and then go look for a site you like.  This campground is very tight, the roads are narrow and the grounds are full of tree roots.  We looked at about 6 different sites.  It averaged out to $40.88 a night including tax.  It was expensive for what we got.20160908_133747We found this one that Cliff could wedge into.20160908_133734We probably would have moved, but the site was close to Dad and everything else we wanted to see.  Plus when we made the reservation it was less than 2 weeks from arrival and they required a non-refundable full payment.  A live and learn moment.

Now on to better things. We got to spend Friday with Dad in Richmond.

Friends that we stay in touch with were traveling back to Northern Virginia from Virginia Beach.  Since they are now retired, they decided to stop in Williamsburg and have dinner with us.  They are not full timers yet, but we met them at Blueberry Hill RV Resort this past spring.20160909_170113We met for dinner at Captain George’s.  They have a seafood buffet and all-you-can-eat crab legs.  Yeah, we are in heaven.20160909_180810We had such a good time with Barbara and Keith Sefton.  They have a Motorhome and tow a Jeep.  We asked the waiter to take our picture.  Which he did.20160909_180836Then he suggested we turn around so that you can see the restaurant in the background. It was a really cool place and the crag legs were awesome.  While at dinner, Keith and Barbara,  suggested we go to the Oceana Air Show with them tomorrow near Virginia Beach.

Saturday September 10, 201620160910_084723We followed Keith and Barbara  to the Navy Air Station.  This is a 3 day event.20160910_0849010It draws almost 300,000 people over the 3 days and it is FREE.20160910_084920That is their Jeep in front.  From this point, the traffic was crazy and the Navy personnel would not let us stay in the same lanes which meant we were not able to park close to each other either.20160910_085434Big hanger where the Navy is painting parts.20160910_104326F/A-18C Hornet – it was Loud and Fast.20160910_101822After the pilots put on a show, they land and drive by the crowd to wave.20160910_104420Another Hornet painted in camouflage colors.20160910_113550These planes were so loud and fast.  It was a lot of fun to watch.20160910_110332But it was hot.  We had some clouds and a breeze, which definitely helped.20160910_114641There is a narrator, but it was sometimes hard to hear.20160910_115141This is the Geico Skytypers flying unit based in Long Island, NY.20160910_115145They fly restored WWII aircraft.20160910_120350The F/A-18F Super Hornet was so loud it made my insides shake.  Keith put a video of this monster on facebook.20160910_120356He went straight up too.20160910_122143It was very impressive. 20160910_142906There were a LOT of people here.20160910_121845This is the USAF Heritage Flight.  In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force (USAF).  The Heritage Flight program was founded in 1997.  Flight performances of current fighter/attack aircraft flying with World War II, Korea and Vietnam era fighters display USAF airpower history. It was very dramatic. 20160910_142739Then came the Blue Angels.  Crazy!20160910_142747They fly so close together.20160910_142940The Blue Angels’ mission is to enhance Navy and Marine Corps recruiting efforts and to represent the naval service of the United States.20160910_143215One is upside down.20160910_143512Now 2 are upside down and 2 are normal.  Check out the tower to the right.  They were watching everything.  It made me feel very safe.20160910_143700The Blue Angels serve as positive role models and goodwill ambassadors for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps.20160910_144530Since its inception in 1946, the Blue Angels have performed for more than 427 million fans.20160910_145311It was incredible.  This was the first air show for Cliff, so we are so glad Keith and Barbara invited us to go. 20160910_165754The ultimate boathouse.20160910_171002There were several bridges and underwater tunnels between Williamsburg and Virginia Beach.20160910_171130It took us 1.5 hours to get to the airshow and over 3 hours to get back because of all the people leaving.

We really enjoyed the day.  It was an incredible experience.

Richmond, VA

Tuesday September 6, 2016

We are in Virginia specifically to see my 92 year old father.  He moved here from Kentucky in June to be closer to my oldest brother.  He has lived in Kentucky for 60 years and in our hometown, Hopkinsville, for 50 years.  A move to Virginia is a Big Deal. 20160907_161047We got a spot in Americamps RV Resort in Ashland, VA.  This is just north of Richmond and a perfect location to see my Dad.  The campground is very flat and very large. Site #E-12, very level, just long enough for 5th wheel and truck, unhooked, good cable, 50 amp, water, sewer and good WiFi.20160907_161027The roads through the park are nice and wide.  We liked it a lot.  You are close to the interstate, so we could hear the traffic, but that does not bother us.20160907_161130The site is kind of narrow, we could only fold out 2/3 of our rug.  There is bump out for the picnic table.  For what we needed, this worked out great for us.

Our friend, John Donovan, stayed here on his way to Florida.  He told us it would be a good place to stop.  It was and it got me closer to my father.  Thanks John.

We have to leave on Thursday, because there is a NASCAR race this weekend in Richmond and this campground is booked. We are moving to Williamsburg and will only be about one hour drive from Dad, not bad.

I am going to do a separate blog about Williamsburg and all there was going on down there.  It was fantastic.  So come back and see what we got into.


Virginia Shenandoah Valley

Friday September 2, 2016

We left Lancaster County Pennsylvania around 9:00 AM.  It was 59 when we woke up and 67 be the time we left.  We could not stay because they were booked for the Labor Day weekend.  We got really lucky and got a site in Virginia for the weekend.  Someone had just cancelled when I called last week.20160902_085302Wonderful bridges crossing the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania.20160902_090954Passed by Middlesex.20160902_094151Wonderful farms along the highway.20160902_1013330Went through Maryland for 8 miles.20160902_102523Drove through West Virginia for 24 miles.20160902_105243This large cross along the interstate was very cool. People can be so creative.20160906_084050261 miles, 5 hours later, we arrived at Staunton/Walnut Hills KOA. This is a family owned campground that hires Workampers for the season.20160902_141502We really like this park. Our site is #68  The sites are long and level. 50 amp, water and sewer.  Cable was not very good and the internet was very slow.  The water pressure changed throughout the day.  The new owners are working on get a pump station on top of the hill to help with that.20160902_134136Even though it was not perfect, it worked for us and we enjoyed it.20160902_134201There is a pond down there.20160902_134204A very nice couple did take this spot for the weekend, but we didn’t care.20160902_141507The pull through sites are very long.  The back in sites have a better view.20160902_141512No big trees or boulders to get in your way.  Some of the reviews mentioned a very steep hill.  I found it while walking and it was steep.20160904_092405Just don’t take sites 107 – 111.  But it was not that bad getting to our site on top of the ridge.  Everyone was so friendly here.20160905_073852Down on the lower level, there is a very nice pond and camp sites all around it.  We liked being up on the ridge.20160902_173444We had a visitor at our site.20160902_173451He just sat there a while, then moved under the pile of camp fire wood.20160902_180832We had a nice campfire and one of the neighbors came over and offered us some Peach Moonshine.  It was probably some of the best tasting moonshine I have ever had.  These people are really friendly, like I said.20160902_185844Then we were graced with a beautiful sunset.20160902_185945We feel so relieved to have a nice camp site for the holiday weekend.

Saturday September 3, 201620160903_121325A trip to Central Virginia is not complete without a visit to Monticello.  Thomas Jefferson’s home on the hill. Construction began in 1769 and he continued to design and re-design for the next 40 years.  20160903_095848It was a 45 minute drive from Staunton.  The views from his hill are wonderful.20160903_110508They give house tours every 15 minutes from 9:45 – 4:30. This does not leave very much time for each tour.20160903_110437I had come here several years ago and loved the tour.  This time was not as nice.  I think they are trying to get too many people through and don’t give you nearly as much information as they used to.20160903_095919And for $25.00 a ticket, I was really looking for more.20160903_121649No pictures were allowed inside, so I only have exterior photos.20160903_121721There were beautiful flowers everywhere.20160903_12173720160903_12250720160903_122224Jefferson’s wife, Martha, died in 1782.  They were only married for 10 years before Martha died.  They had 6 children together, but only 2 daughters survived to adulthood and only one past the age of 25.  Martha only lived 4 months after the birth of their last child.20160903_123419It is a very lovely place with so much history.  Jefferson was an amazing man.  He loved architecture and gardening.  He recorded the weather everyday while at Monticello.20160903_123458Jefferson died on July 4, 1826 and was over $100,000 in debt, mostly because he inherited his father-in-laws debt. It was not an easy life for the author of the Declaration of Independence.

Labor Day, September 5, 201620160905_090341We thought it was a good day for a drive. Shenandoah National Park. Skyline Drive20160905_091404105 miles of beauty.  Speed limit is 35 mph.20160905_091424Hugh valleys with wonderful views.20160905_09342175 Overlooks along Skyline Drive.20160905_094347We only drove less than half way and each overlook was different.20160905_094711Small lakes throughout the valley.20160905_103722Beautiful rolling hills.20160905_104032101 miles of the Appalachian Trial pass through the Shenandoah National Park.  The A.T. is 2,180 miles, passes through 14 states, 5 National Parks, 7 National Forests, and numerous state parks and towns between Georgia and Maine.20160905_104052Ivy Creek 1.4, Pinefield Gap 1.9, Ivy Creek Spring 2.2 and Simmons Gap 3.320160905_105109Another beautiful overlook.20160905_105229Even some wildlife.20160905_105232Sorry it is so blurring, but this deer was moving fast.20160905_112905A wonderful barn on the way back to Staunton.20160905_122646An awesome home in downtown Staunton.20160905_123708We were told that Kathy’s was the best in town, and it was wonderful.20160905_130624Being Labor Day, we got lucky that they were open.  They close at 2:00 and we got there about 1:30.20160905_130717Saw this marker outside that Staunton is the Birthplace of Woodrow Wilson, 28th President.  He was born here December 28, 1856.

Moving on tomorrow to be closer to my Dad.  I get to see him for a few days. I can’t wait. Safe travels to everyone.


August 29 – September 2, 2016

Monday August 29, 201620160829_100912We left East Stroudsburg, PA, heading to Lancaster, PA.  It is only 114 miles, but took 3 hours due to heavy traffic around Allentown.20160829_102155Passed through Virginville, PA.20160829_142024It is hot in Pennsylvania in August.20160829_142204Beautiful campground in Gordonville, PA, Lancaster County.20160829_142228We stayed at County Acres Campground.  Beautiful farmland all around us.  Site #876, 50 amp, water, sewer, cable (70+ channels), decent WiFi. Nice laundry room, $1.75 wash, $0.50 for 30 minutes of dryer.20160829_142234Sites are decent.  Long enough for the 5th wheel and the truck.20160829_142251Not very level side to side, but not too bad.  Easy to get to, right off US-30. Bird-in-Hand Corporation owns a lot of property and businesses in the Lancaster area.  They own this campground, multiple hotels, restaurants, bakeries, etc.20160829_140458Had dinner at Bird-in-Hand Family Restaurant. In my opinion, it is not as good as The Blue Gate in Shipshewana, IN.20160829_140505Very pretty flowers.20160829_181734“If you build it, they will come.”20160829_181740That is some good size corn.

Tuesday August 30, 2016 – York, PA20160830_110437Decided to drive to York to tour the Harley-Davidson Vehicle Operations manufacturing facility.20160830_110456They build custom order bikes here too.20160830_112730These are the colors for 2017.20160830_112816They manufacture the Touring, Softail, CVO and Trike styles here in York.20160830_112848My favorite.20160830_113215Cliff’s favorite.20160830_113409I like it too. 20160830_113459I had a fun time getting off of that monster.20160830_115947_001We like to check in with new friends from time to time, just to see where everyone is.  Phil and Judy Kerns, full-timers from Oklahoma, just happened to be in Hershey.  They suggested we meet them for a tour.  We made reservations on-line, which we found out later was a very smart idea. The staff told us that most of the time people just show up and the tours are full.  We took the Steel Toe Tour, which was Great!  They don’t allow photos on the tour, so we just got a few in the lobby.  We are very impressed with Harley-Davidson and the commitment to the saying “Made in America”.  Highly recommend this tour if you are ever in the area.  If I could ride a motorcycle, it would definitely be a Harley. 20160830_144808The tour was over 2 hours long.  Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and was British, not that really means anything, but interesting. We headed downtown York for an early dinner.20160830_144841It was recommended that we try the White Rose Bar & Grill.  It was very nice and we got to enjoy our time with Phil and Judy a little longer.  We meet them at the Escapees Rally in Vermont in July.  We just love meeting new full-timers and then finding them along the path again.20160830_163231Interesting public art downtown York.20160830_165614Beautiful bridges on our way home from York, PA.

Wednesday August 31, 201620160831_082626The Amish in Pennsylvania ride bike scouters. Cliff really likes these.20160831_083118Since our campground is owned by Bird-in-Hand, they have a free tour of the Lancaster County countryside.  Since we love tours and it was free, we had to go.  The first stop was a farm that make their own, well everything.  The hot pretzel was probably the best I have had in a very long time.  20160831_083018They had peacocks, donkeys, ponies, wild turkey, horses, chickens, goats and anything else you could think of.20160831_083130Sheep and Goose.20160831_083132The donkeys were so cute.20160831_102644Covered bridges.20160831_102719You can take buggy tours too.  Those are not free.20160831_102944Stunning farms.20160831_114356I posted this one on facebook, so most of you have seen this. Cliff was so excited, he stopped the truck to get his picture.  What can I say??20160831_110727Stoltzfus Meat market was nice and had a very large selection.  We stocked up on things for the freezer.  They did not have any pork burgers, which was disappointing.  They are really good if you can find them.20160831_110828There were shops like this one, Wild Goose Gallery.  We actually bought something here.  I will show you when we get back to Florida. A very nice man works there and sells his bird carvings.  Cool place to wander around.20160831_111800There are several road side shops.20160831_111803Roger and Dawn Brown, sorry this is so blurry, but we wanted you to see the flowers made out of horseshoes.  They were painted all different colors and they were everywhere.20160831_114349The hay is ready to harvest.20160831_112711My wings are not very straight….20160831_112726but Cliff’s are.20160831_121246Cliff found his favorite shirt.20160831_121533and his new Heike stick.

Off to Virginia. Till then, cheers.



Mystic, CT and Newport, RI

August 24 – August 28, 201620160825_083456We stayed at Seaport RV Resort in Mystic, CT. by the advice from Helen and Bryan Salgado. This is a Beautiful place.20160824_173904Site #69. Very level and long.  They have 50 amp service with water, but no sewer.  They have a pump out service that comes by every 3 days for free and 2 dump stations on the way out.

Thursday August 25, 201620160825_094644Heading to Newport, RI.20160825_09473420160825_094806Nice bridge 20160825_094830Rose Island Lighthouse.  It is hard to see through the glare of the window. Sorry.20160825_095410Newport Shipyard, right behind the Visitor Center. Look at the tall masts.20160825_101322Repairing this huge sailboat. History of the America’s Cup had a strong influence in Newport.20160825_10170720160825_101916The bridge we came across to get here.20160825_102440Beautiful sailboats.20160825_103112The big one is named Sun Chaser.20160825_103116Another Big boat.20160825_104249 - CopyWe took a Historic Trolley Tour with Nate.20160825_110853 - CopyThe Bernardo Cardines is thought to be the oldest baseball field in America.20160825_111027 - CopyWhite Horse Tavern, est.1673, is thought to be the oldest Tavern in America still in operation.20160825_111808The International Tennis Hall of Fame. Known for their 13 grass courts. 20160825_111841The most recently restored building in Newport.20160825_111854This is the front.20160825_112012Mansions everywhere.20160825_112535The Breakers. Vanderbilt’s Summer home, 70 rooms. Click on the link and see all the cool photos. Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt(1794-1877) established the family fortune in steamships and later in the New York Central Railroad. The Commodore’s grandson, Cornelius Vanderbilt II, purchased this property in 1885. There was a small wooden house on the property then. In 1893, he commissioned a new Italian Renaissance-style palazzo.      Nate, the tour guide, was great at explaining the history of Newport and how Doris Duke was mainly responsible for saving a lot of the mansions in this city. This is my cup of tea.20160825_114334_003And real breakers.20160825_114854Striped cows.20160825_115419The trolley makes a short stop at Fort Adams.20160825_115540Remember this ship, you will see it later getting under sail.20160825_115814There is a nice food truck here at Fort Adams, A Fork in the Road.. We split a Mediterranean Chicken sandwich, which was very good.20160825_121410These moorings have little docks (look between the sail boats ahead). Never seen this before.  Everywhere else they are just buoys.20160825_125315Large Sailboats.20160825_131655New England churches are beautiful.20160825_131709Newport harbor.20160825_135416Remember the big old sailboat at Fort Adams? We caught sight of it going out when we crossed back over the bridge.20160825_135439Pretty cool. We need to spend more time in Newport, RI. Loved it!!

Friday August 26, 201620160826_084017We drove to Mystic, CT. (Our campground is in Old Mystic)20160826_084957Draw bridge20160826_085056Mystic Pizza anyone?20160826_085115Beautiful churches.20160826_090957Then on to New London, CT. Kind of a rainy day.20160826_092948Beautiful colonial homes.20160826_092959New London had some pretty homes. 20160826_09300220160826_09324620160826_093410Private lighthouse.20160826_094508Art out on an island.20160826_094908Plenty of boats.20160826_09532920160826_095355New London is a lot bigger than we expected. 20160826_09540220160826_095427Very cool fountain.20160826_095500Large bridge to get here.20160826_101240Back to Mystic to go to the Mystic Seaport. The Museum of America and the Sea.20160826_102454There is a whole lot to see here.20160826_102722This Live Oak log grew on the coast of South Carolina for over 600 years, until it was blown over by Hurricane Hugo in 1989.  Live oak is a dense and strong wood, long favored by shipbuilders for frames and parts of the structural system within a wooden ship. Mystic Seaport workers salvaged this tree along with ten trailer loads of prized live oak.20160826_10283620160826_103414They have an active shipyard here where older vessels can be repaired authentically.20160826_103953One of the ships being repaired.20160826_114051This was a general store.20160826_114329There is a large building that demonstrates how rope is made.20160826_114305The yarn runs through this spinner to make the strand.20160826_114320The strands are twisted together to make the rope. They can make all different sizes of rope, depending on how many strands they use.20160826_114918Replica of Brant Point Lighthouse.20160826_115041You can take a sailboat ride for $4.00.20160826_115050We met the Captain in charge of this beautiful sailboat. He takes students, ages 15-18, on a five or 10-day voyage on this sailboat. The students learn teamwork, leadership and traditional nautical skills while sailing as the crew under his direction.  The students stand watch, steer, and help navigate through New England waters.  They go to places like Martha’s Vineyard, Block Island and Cuttyhunk.  Sounds great for a teenager.20160826_115853Beautiful wooden sailboats.20160826_11585620160826_120223These large old sailboats are massive.20160826_121503Mystic Bank – 1833.20160826_121154This is the museum’s pride and joy.  The Charles W. Morgan.  The oldest American merchant ship still afloat – and the last surviving American wooden whale-ship. When launched in 1841 in New Bedford, Massachusetts, the Morgan was one of more than 600 American ships hunting whales to supply the world’s need for oil.20160826_121413Check out the girl climbing the rope lines from the whaleboat to the ship.  You can barely see her just above the whaleboat with the yellow strip.20160826_121838The guy standing on the railing is singing as the crew and visitors pull the whaleboat up.  These boats weigh over 2,000 lbs.20160826_121841The Charles W. Morgan is 106 feet long.  Named for it’s original owner, Charles W. Morgan, a whaling merchant.  The vessel made 37 voyages during an 80-year whaling career.20160826_121919Hunting primarily in the Pacific Ocean, the Morgan often spent 3-5 years on each voyage. Seventy whales were killed during the first voyage, filling the hold with 2,400 barrels of oil. A crew of 30 to 36 men were needed to sail the ship, row the six-man whaleboats used to hunt and kill whales, and render oil from the blubber in a brick tryworks on deck.20160826_121928And there is the whaleboat and the man is still singing.  After the ship’s retirement in 1921, the Morgan was preserved as an exhibit near New Bedford, Mass., before being brought to Mystic Seaport in 1941. It was named as a National Historic Landmark in 1966.  It is a beautiful ship. (Trivia: the difference between a boat and a ship – you can put a boat on a ship, but you cannot put a ship on a boat).  Learn something new everyday.  Love it.20160826_123033This is just a beautiful boat.20160826_124155We learned about Scrimshaw, the Whalers’ Art.  And learned about oysters and how they are harvested.  Very interesting place. Highly recommend going.

Saturday August 27, 201620160827_102457Leaving Mystic, CT today, heading to East Stroudsburg, PA, about 220 miles away. We went through New York state.20160827_111449Across the Hudson River.  Dang, this is a big river.20160827_115519Into Pennsylvania.20160827_131944We have 2 nights at the Moose Lodge in East Stroudsburg, PA.20160827_13195220160827_173407They have a lot of property, with an outdoor pavilion and a small creek in the back.20160827_173424Not a bad campsite, it was level, 30 amp and water.  $15.00 a night, we love these kinds of places.20160828_093734Sunday they had a bike ride for charity.  Nice place and pretty easy to get to.

Monday we are off to Lancaster, PA, about 114 miles from here.