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Cross-Country Journal -- June 2003


Sunday, June 1 -- We decided to move to the KOA near Washington.  Actually it was nicely positioned for BWI and Washington.  Jaimie and Mario followed us with some interesting commentary from Houston Control to the mother ship.  We went into Baltimore, Little Italy to have dinner.  We drove by Camden Yards and had some interesting interaction with the locals on the street.  The dinner was great and then on to take Mario to the airport.  Jaimie is staying with us and will get up early and drive to the airport.

Monday, June 2 -- We woke up early and said goodbye to Jaimie.  Tommy was coming down with a cold.  Probably due to golfing in the rain on Saturday.  We drove to the Metro station and then rode the metro to DC.  First stop the Capital building.  It was too late to get tickets for a tour but we went into the Senate office building and went to Hillary's office and got passes for the gallery.  We were somewhat surprised that there was a gallery of people watching one senator talk to no one and then nothing.  Tom asked if this was what always happened and we were told it was.  No tickets remained for tours of the Mint for the day.  Next stop the Washington Memorial via walking along the water and viewing the Jefferson Memorial.  I stopped and got rewarded with multiple passport stamps.  No tickets remained for tours to the top of the monument.  A familiar theme?  A walk past the rear of the White House.  Tours are suspended at the FBI indefinitely.  We walked past the Old Post Office and could go up the tower and look out over the city!  We got back to the Metro, Tommy took a nap and then the last trip to BWI.

Tuesday, June 3 -- We called the half price campground on Hatteras and were told there were vacancies.  We enjoyed the drive, choosing to go over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.  The campground is located more than half way out Hatteras Island the second of the Outer Banks.  Direct TV came in great and we unloaded all our stuff.

Wednesday, June 4 -- We found we could drive the Jeep out on the beach.  Pepper was very happy to get out and see the beach and the ocean.  We drove to the end of Hatteras Island.  Seeing the few much more expensive campgrounds on the island made us think we had found the best spot.  We tried to go to the movies but so did everyone else on the island so we bought tickets for Thursday.

Thursday, June 5 -- It had rained a lot throughout the night.  We drove over to the beach and set up our chairs, umbrella and enjoyed the ocean.  It is nice to put all your gear in the car, drive to a beach spot and just take it out and set it up!  We went to see Bruce Almighty.  I really liked parts of it.

Friday, June 6 -- We woke up to sunshine again.  We drove to the Hatteras lighthouse and got tickets to walk up the 200 + steps to the top.  It wasn't that bad.  We enjoyed the view at the top. There is an open air observation deck.   We enjoyed our campsite and later drove to the beach.  We drove to the end of the car beach and let Pepper run.  She enjoys rolling in the sand and jump into waves.  She came back tired and sandy.   

Saturday, June 7 --Lots of rain and wind during the night. We took pepper over to the beach to get an early morning run.   We rented a movie. Did some reading.

Sunday, June 8 -- Again another night of rain and wind. It makes you wonder where all this rain might be going to on such a small island.  I took on defrosting the refrigerator.  We went to see the Matrix Reloaded.  We had been told to let our mind run free.  Another words don't try to think too hard.  It was an enjoyable movie.

Monday, June 9 -- The sky was clear so we decided to drove to Hatteras and take the free ferry to Ocracoke Island.  At the last minute we put Pepper in the car.  The ferry holds around 30 cars and is not like the sturdy boat we took in Washington State.  It hugs the shoreline of Hatteras and then for a mile or so is in the open water where the ocean hits Pimlico Sound.  We watched lots of jelly fish as we docked at Ocracoke.  We drove towards the town.  First we stopped at the pony pens where about 25 wild ponies are penned.  These are believed to be from Spanish ships that may have been shipwrecked off the island.  We drove to a Jeep entrance and went to an near empty beach.  Pepper was glad she came.  We drove to the town of Ocracoke and stopped at the National Park visitor center and read up about the island.  Blackbeard, the pirate used to hang out around these waters.  We drove to get our lighthouse picture and then got a picnic lunch for the beach.  Again we had the beach to our selves and entertained ourselves by reading a local paper.  We drove back to the ferry waited about 20 or so minutes and then got loaded on. The seas were a little rougher and it was very hot.  Pepper came out and sat on the ferry deck. 

Tuesday, June 10 -- Last day at Hatteras.  We decided to head over to the beach.  We had gotten some new books to read and set up our chairs and umbrella.  The tide was coming in.  We moved back.  Another wave approached and washed up on us an we moved back.  We moved back one more time to a spot where Tom said the water wouldn't reach us.  A huge wave approached, I tipped my chair back to try to get the seat out of the water and next thing I knew I was laying back in the ocean. It was a little shocking but a good laugh at how the ocean wasn't going to come up this far.  My new book was very wet and every page had sand between it.  We drove over to the sound side of the island.  The water was below our knees and like bath water.  Pepper enjoyed walking way out and then bounding back.  We wouldn't let her roll in the sand since we would be leaving in the morning.  We got great shrimp to have for shrimp cocktail.  It was the best!

Wednesday, June 11 -- We left Hatteras and headed back to the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel.  We stopped at a gas station where we had maked down $1.27 for diesel.  It was $1.29.  We drove to a Wal-Mart and got two back tires for the Jeep.  Then we headed over towards Ocean City, Maryland.  It was quite a contrast from the sea shore of Hatteras.  We drove up to Rehoboth Beach and stayed overnight at a Passport campground.  We had wanted to see Dewey Beach the area where Bill Silva rents a beach house. It was a very nice area. 

Thursday, June 12 -- We drove up the state of Delaware.  I counted up that we had visited 36 states since we started traveling in the motor home.  14 more.  We entered into New York around 2:15 after being gone almost a year.  It was raining :-( ...We parked the motor home in Donna's driveway.  We had come down here last April.  We have just made a big circle. 

Friday, June 13 -- We went to Freightliner to have the motor home inspected and to have the oil changed. They didn't have inspection stickers so we had the oil changed.  We tried to have the Jeep inspected but were not able to get it done today.  We made an appointment for tomorrow and made an appointment for the motor home at Ballantyne.  We went out to e at with Tom's mom and dad and Donna and Jack and Ellen.  It was a nice dinner.

Saturday, June 14 -- We went drop off the Jeep and then got a supply of spiedies and marinade.  I called Linda and we got together to shop and talk.  We made dinner at Donna's

Sunday, June 15 -- We went to Mc Donald's for breakfast and then drove to Rochester.  We are parking in my dad's driveway for the night.  We had a nice dinner at Gail's and I got to catch up with her.

Monday, June 16 -- We went to have the motor home inspected and now both vehicles are legal for another year.  We went to Eastview.  Tom's watch had died and since mine had also we needed someone to have the time.  We drove to the lake. We were surprised at how high the water was in the parking lot at the beginning of the lake.  We found out it was high everywhere and the area we had parked in last year was very mushy. We took an unusual route to park the motor home next to the cottage and we are now blocking the view Jerry had just clean out.  We had the neighbors for pie to try to make friends.  Gail had given us an extra apple pie.  It came in handy.

Tuesday, June 17 -- We looked over the cottage and came up a plan to spruce up the cottage.  Dad and Gail were planning on buying press down blocks for the kitchen and dining room.  I had fun ripping up the old flooring.  Tom worked on the new shower head and a 30 amp hook up for the motor home.

Wednesday, June 18 -- We painted the back section of the front room, walls and ceiling.  There was enough paint left for the kitchen so that got a freshening up. We finished ripping up the old kitchen flooring and now are waiting for the rest of the crew.

Thursday, June 19 -- We went to Watertown to pick up a few more items.  Gail, Tom and Dad arrived.  Tom had to cut out some sections of warped floor boards and we had to even out some areas.  We all were learning new skills.  I learned how to chisel out some wood. We pressed down some of the kitchen floor.  It is looking good.  Tom fixed Chef's Choice for all.

Friday, June 20 -- We finished putting down the kitchen floor.  It is amazing to see the dining room and kitchen all the same. All the dogs were banned from the cottage.

Saturday, June 21 -- Most of the dining room/kitchen is finished.  Tom is working on moldings and Gail is working on painting the "beams" brown so they look real.  All the appliances got moved back and Tom N was the cook of the day.

Sunday, June 22 -- Tom and Dad went to Lowes and purchased the carpet and padding.  The plan is to carpet the whole big room. Gail and Tom left for Rochester.  All the furniture was moved out of the living room into the dining area. 

Monday, June 23 -- Tom had to remove the trip bar that had separated the old porch and the big room.  He worked on the ceiling.  We painted moldings and window sills.

Tuesday, June 24 -- The white ceiling in the living room is shocking!  Who could believe it was that dirty.  It was probably 20 or so years since it was painted.  The big room was built the summer before Jaimie was born so that makes things about 26 years old. 

Wednesday, June 25 -- We put the padding down in the front of the big room and rolled the big section of carpet out.  Tom had to make some cuts to work around the stove and the post.  Things worked out great and the carpet choice looks good. This is our one year anniversary of being on the road.  We have enjoyed it for the most part and are enjoying being at the cottage for a long time.

Thursday, June 26 -- Dad had to leave so that he could be home for a doctor's appointment.  Tom and I worked on finishing the carpet in the big room.  It turned out very nice.

Friday, June 27-- I started working on removing the wild lilies that had overrun the rock garden.  It was very overgrown  I had to dig out lots of roots.  We decided to go to Watertown and treat ourselves to Red Lobster.

Saturday, June 28 -- We went to Lowes and picked out "wooden" blinds for the front windows and lighthouse patterned curtains for the dining room area.  Tom bought wood at 37 lumber that should keep him busy. I bought some flowers for the rock garden.

Sunday, June 29 -- I decided to paint a small cupboard with the brown paint we had used for the beams.  We had also painted the down casings and "takeout" window brown.  Tom worked on moldings.

Monday, June 30 -- Tom found he had to build the missing window casing so that he could hang up one of the blinds.  That took awhile.  The blinds look great.  It keeps the window area looking very open and clean.  I started painting a dressed with the brown paint. The furniture was placed back in the front room in a different arrangement which made the room really seem like one big room.  We are awaiting the reviews.  We think the change is amazing.