Monthly Archives: September 2012

Random Stuff, in between posts

This is for Olivia. (But you can look at it too!)

Biking in our ski helmets

And, this is for Nancy. Take a moment and relax.

Black

A few nights ago, we stopped for the night along a deserted country road. no streetlights. No porch lights. No glow in the sky from any nearby city. It was a new moon night. Clouds covered the sky.

We got in bed and turned out the lights. This is what I saw: 

Couldn’t see a thing! Black. I’ve never lived in a totally dark place. There are always lights on somewhere nearby. At home, when my eyes adjust, I can make out the furniture in the room and my husband sleeping beside me. 

Here, I could see absolutely nothing. Just black. And I loved it! The old saying “Couldn’t see my hand before my face” had meaning here. I was experiencing the night as countless millions had done before me in darker (literally) times. So cool… 

– Jane

DAYS 8 and 9 – 09/22 to 09/23/2012 Stowe and Go

Doug and Huntly directed us to some awesome mountain bike trails right in Stowe called the Cady Hill Trails. Not all that long but definitely not for beginners! We had a blast. Here’s a trail map:

www.townofstowevt.org/images/photos/cady_hill_trails.pdf

Don’t ask me which trails we went on. My usual riding involves desperately keeping up with the group. I just follow where they go! I do remember falling off some low bridges on the Bridgey trail.

We also went to Caroline’s soccer game. They won 4-0! Yay! The game was exciting plus we got to visit with Huntly and Doug some more. Here’s a photo of some team action:

the Stowe Raiders, in dark green

And here’s Caroline in action:

Just kidding, Caroline. You blocked everything that came your way but your team dominated so, not so much for you to do!

Caroline’s fans:

David, Jane and Huntly

– Jane

DAY 7 – 09/21/2012 – Stowe VT, Cradled in the Arms of Family

You never know how you’ll be received whenever you call a relative by surprise.  They have their busy schedule, need to work etc.  But, you’ll know whether they really want your brief company.  Perhaps bringing our own bedroom where ever we go will help?  Here we feel welcome.

Jane, Caroline and David at Huntly & Doug’s beautiful home. Mt Mansfield in the background

Huntly, Doug and Caroline help us feel at home in their home.  We slept in late (anything after 8 is late for me) and sat around for lots of coffee and pancakes. We ate their home cooked food, had long showers and did laundry. Great hosts, eh?!

Jane, Huntly, David and Amber, our host dog cousin.

Later we rode into Stowe and up/down the “Rec Trail”.  A beautiful 5 1/2 mile paved ribbon between Downtown Stowe’s Blinking Red Light and the Top Knotch Racquet Club along the river all the way.  Idylllic, safe and peaceful, but we yearn for single track.  Won’t be long.

– David & Jane

DAY 6 – 09/20/2012 – Vermont or Bust, Vergennes/Verizon

…enough said!

We started with “Second Breakfast” at a diner:  The Hot Biscuit in Ticonderoga or Ti as they call it.

Here was a breakfast we’d share as we’d already eaten. Homemade biscuits with sausage gravy.

Finally receiving good news buoyed our drive out of New York.  We really don’t want to leave, but Fall moves fast up here.  (We want to move North to Maine and New Brunswick at a modest pace so we can turn South and travel as slow as our overall experience and  entertainment suggests.)

Jane has romantic childhood memories of Ticonderoga, (a game that we’re having trouble researching) or a place she’s never been. We saw this as a reason to explore and plunked down about 17 bucks each for the fort museum.  Despite my frenetic ways, independence, and ability to read display signs, I gently lobbied to wait for the tour.  Boy was I glad.  Dan the presenter in period dress, herded about twenty of us to a flat below the ramparts.  A very good speaker, he skillfully painted the times that these places flourished.  A new nation, French and British interests…very lively and informative.  Looked like a great job for a History Major or actor.   We really enjoyed it.  But as will be our way, our feet were soon aching to make some miles toward Vermont.

Dan had us feeling “Revolutionary sentiments”…

Oddly, the brief “service” our phones had given us, they also irritated us.  However much our phones said “looking for service” and we enjoyed being out of touch, what we lacked most was a way to blog.  This feels like an important part of our adventure.  Surely if we only fitfully jot a few things and posts, it won’t capture the immensity of the country or the privilege we’ve stolen to travel within it.

We saw the Big Red Check Mark:  Verizon Store in Vergennes, I pulled right in.  Picking phones and service plans can be pretty tedious stuff.  In Maryland the stores are so busy it can be over half an hour before anyone notices you are there.  Not so in Vermont.   Chase was gracious, informative and entertaining.  Nick too got involved and we couldn’t help telling them about our adventure to explain why we needed a “hotspot” or something to connect for blogging.  We are 4G!   Both of us picked “dumb phones”.  I see an image of people everywhere, standing, looking down at something in their hands.  I see many parents so engrossed in their swiping and texting, they miss excited toddlers crying up for attention.  I don’t want to miss the world around me.  We want to see and hear all we can.

My cousin, Huntley returned my call, sounding almost like she was jumping up and down.  Wow, you’re up this far already?  You’ve got to visit!  We can make Stowe before 930 PM…more nice back roads then about 20 “icky” miles on Interstate 89.  I think it was the 40mph “Minimum Speed” that confirmed our disdain.  My poor little V6  4Runner can’t decide which gear to kick down into and seems to struggle more trying for 60 on the highway than whatever we roll on those back roads.  (Wonder how long it will last?)

– David

I remember having, as a child, a game called “Fort Ticonderoga”. Or was it Fort Ticonderoga Lincoln Logs? It’s pretty hazy. Maybe Nancy or Bob can refresh my memory. Anyhoo, that’s why I wanted to go to the fort. We also took Iris, our little stuffed bunny who travels with us. We have pics of Iris from all over the world.

– Jane