2013 Sept 16 -17
We often find the estimated time of driving from point A to point B via Google maps is accurate only if we take their time and multiple by 1.5. Yesterday may have been close to 1.75. In fairness to Google maps,they assume your speed to be 65 mph in most cases. We never travel faster than 55mph, because that is the upper limit at which out little car is supposed to be towed. That,in itself adds time to our travels. Additionally, when given the option of, say I-90, or Rt 2, across Massachusetts, we always opt for the smaller road. But,even taking all that into consideration, yesterday was a longer trip than we anticipated. Add to that,the fact that rain seems to be following us.
In any case, the drive from Charlemont, MA to Cooperstown, NY took us about five hours. There were lots of up and down steep inclines, and lots of hairpin turns. By the time we reached Cooperstown, I was more tired than I should've been. We didn't have a reservation anywhere. I had been told by Cindy, a camper we met in Mooer's Forks, NY, that the Baseball Hall of Fame had a huge parking lot, but I didn't see it. And navigating small town streets in the RV with the to ad, when tired, was not what I wanted to do. Quite by accident, we found ourselves on County Road 31, just outside the town itself and I remembered that one of the four campgrounds I had located was on County Rd 31. Whether serendipity, or a God-incidence, we found ourselves at Cooperstown Shadow Brook Campground.
We were greeted by the owners two lovely rescue dogs, Daisy and Shannon. One of the owners, Cathy Crum, was manning the reception desk and was very welcoming. Shortly, her husband and co-owner, Frank Crum, came inside. I was wearing a tie dyed shirt that I got at Split Rock Lighthouse, MN. Frank asked where I got a shirt like theirs and indicated a rack of tee shirts, tie dyed like mine, but with the logo,"Peace, Love, and Shadow Brook", instead of my, "Peace, Love and Split Rock". We chatted a bit and then Frank took us to our site, ensuring that it was one where Raymond would have satellite reception. Frank was interested in our little car, so we chatted about that with him while we unhooked her. It was one of the more pleasant of our recent campground experiences.
While Raymond went to hook up the water and electricity, I went to move our now unhooked car onto our campsite. Only guess what? No juice. Yep, a dead battery. Why? At that point I had no clue. And, of course, we had no jumper cables. (We'll be buying those on our next Walmart stop.)
Raymond was going to walk up to the office and ask Frank and Cathy if they had jumper cables, but I called instead. Cathy couldn't have been nicer. She said that they indeed did have them and that Frank would bring them down to us. Talk about above and beyond!
Indeed Frank brought them down, showed us how to hook them up and then said to simply drop them at the office when we were on our way out. In the meantime, I had time to reflect and realized that the dead battery was my fault. When I explained what I had don to Raymond and Frank, they were both pretty sure that I had caused the battery drain. Yet another boneheaded thing to add to my list! Although Frank assured me I was at least the fifth camper this season who requested use of jumper cables.
The day before, we pulled into Country Aire Campground, after a really long drive caused by construction delays on I-495, in Massachusetts. I was very tried. The site was a pull thru. Since there was no need to unhook the car, as we weren't going anywhere, I completely forgot about turning the key to the off position. And, in the morning, we hadn't bothered to check the brake lights, hazard lights and turn signals, since we hadn't unplugged from the motor home the previous night. Yes, I realize now that we should have checked anyway.
My experienced RVing friends, in particular Margery and Janice, are thinking right now : Check Lists! We told you that you need to have check lists! Yes, my friends, you are correct. I am going to add to the list for the car, that it must be shut off, and disconnected from the motor home. It never occurred to me that I needed a checklist for that. But, in my defense, I have never before parked in a pull thru and NOT disconnected the car. Usually, even in pull thrus, we use the car for traveling locally. No excuse, I know, and another lesson learned. But these lessons are wearing me out.
Anyway, by the time we got back into Cooperstown, it was after 3pm. Raymond went to the Baseball Hall of Fame and I walked around town, enjoying the sights and small town atmosphere. When Ray called to tell me he was done, he also mentioned that he would get free admission the next day since he entered after 3pm. Good deal. The same thing had happened at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year. So, it was decided that we would spend two nights at Shadow Brook and Ray would return to the Baseball Hall of Fame the next day. This was good for me, too, since I was feeling a little under the weather and could use an extra day of no driving. And when we asked Cathy about a grocery store, she asked what we needed. She then pointed us in the direction of a local farm stand, where we got peppers, zucchini, squash and potatoes. I may go back today for one of their watermelons, too.
So, now I sit typing this, awaiting a phone call to pick R up when he is done at the Baseball Hall of Fame. Then we will spend some time at the Fenimore Art Museum and maybe buy a little something for my Daddy's 88th birthday from Cooperstown, since my Dad is a big baseball fan. Tonight we're having homemade chili for dinner, with some ingredients from the local farm stand.
All in all a good couple of days, in spite of those lessons.