Boston MA

Ok…it’s about time to report on some Fun Stuff©…which is the whole reason for this RV lifestyle and “move about the country” as the Alamo Car Rental Agency’s ads say…so let’s get to it.

We’re here in the Boston area over the Memorial Day weekend…arriving Wednesday and leaving Tuesday after the holiday. We planned for some activities in the Fun Stuff© category Thursday, Friday, and Saturday…and then we’ll spend Sunday and Memorial Day hunkered down at the campground doing laundry and having our old college friend Pat Balzarini over for a bbq on Monday…that way she gets to drive in the traffic and not us…as it turned out by 1400 on Friday afternoon the highways were already jammed as we discovered on our way home from Salem…but Ima getting a bit ahead of myself so let’s rewind slightly to the beginning.

Thursday we had dinner planned at Rabia’s downtown but before that we decided to head in to the city and tour the Sam Adams Brewery…it’s the local brand up here and although it’s a major player and provider of beer around the country now it started back in the 80s as a craft brewery. We drove up there and scored a primo parking place right by the door…we got lucky as parking in Boston is hard to come by. Our tour was run by Andrew and Jack…who were actually pretty funny guys to listen to…they didn’t waste a whole lot of time on describing the brewing process…about 10 minutes talking ingredients and then a quick explanation for another 10 minutes or so in the research brewery attached to the main offices of the company…after that we spent another half hour or so sampling the brews. First up was their most popular one…Sam Adams Boston Lager…we just got a small sample of that as it’s pretty hoppy and we don’t really care for hoppy beers much. After that we sampled their 76 which was outstanding and also the 26.2…which was brewed in honor of the Boston Marathon…ya know that foot race that takes place every April up here…anyways a marathon is 26.2 miles long (actually 26 miles, 285 yards…but who’s really going to nitpick)…the 26.2 is almost a light beer with a lower alcohol content than most so it’s just the ticket after finishing the race.

Speaking of a marathon…any idea why it’s that distance. Well…everybody knows that the Marathon is named after the famous runner (they didn’t have radios back during the Athenian and Spartan days ya know) who…according to the legend anyway…ran home to Athens from Marathon…which is a pass through the mountains…and gasped out that the Athenians had defeated the enemy at Marathon with his dying breath. Well…that’s the story…and as far as it goes it’s basically true but is sort of short on details. What actually happened when you look into it is that the Athenians went out to Marathon in 490BC during the first Persian attempt to conquer Greece. The Athenian army got out to the pass and discovered they were outnumbered…so decided to send for reinforcements. The Greek General called for a runner…Pheidippides…to go to Sparta and get help. This he did…running some 140 miles there to ask for reinforcements. The Spartans basically told him that there was a festival going on and they couldn’t come…so naturally he did what runners did and ran the 140 miles back to tell the General that we were on our own. Since the General needed every soldier…poor Pheidippides grabbed his shield and spear and fought all day with the Greeks routing the Persians. Then the General needed to send word some 25 miles back to Athens…and naturally again called on Pheidippides who ran home, told the city leaders that the Greeks had won, and then died. Now you know the rest of the story as Paul Harvey would say.

When the ancient Greek Olympics tradition was reconstituted in 1896 the organizers instituted the marathon race…which was originally just a long foot race. By the time of the 1908 Olympics the race was standardized at “about 25 miles” and then a course was laid out which turned out to be almost 26 miles in length plus the single lap around the track in the stadium for the current distance of 26.2 miles.

There is a legend that it was originally 26 miles but that the finished was moved to be in front of the Queen Mother’s bedroom…but since that’s in Buckingham Palace and the race ended in White City Stadium in front of the Royal Box…as far as I can figure out that’s just a legend.

Anyways…Sam Adams now has a beer in honor of the race which was the first famous marathon and until the 50s or 60s there just weren’t very many marathon races outside of the Olympics.

Here are Andrew and Jack (he’s the one behind the bar) at our tasting.

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From the brewery we drove over to the nearby T station (that’s the subway in Boston) with the intent of parking Little Red and taking the train downtown…but the parking lot we were planning on using was gone and there’s some sort of construction going on. After a few minutes we decided to drive up to the Ruggles station since it had a parking garage…which it did…and it cost us $28 to park for about 4 hours. Another $5.55 each for round trip T tickets and we were quickly off 6 stops north to the old part of town…and we had about 2 hours to kill before dinner.

First on our agenda was picking up some cannoli’s for later…we knew about Mikes Pastry Stop and were going there but at the Elks Lodge down in Florida a visiting member from Boston told us we should also try Modern Pastry which is about 2 blocks away. Naturally…we decided to get some from both places and have a Taste-Off later on.

After grabbing our 6 test samples…we decided that it was 5 o’clock in Tel Aviv as one of our RVing buddies would say…and looked for a drinking establishment. We could only find a couple down near the pastry shops…and both of them were about as lively as a funeral parlor so we passed them up and headed up towards the restaurant. We also chose to skip the Wine and Cigar Emporium that we passed but luckily right across from the restaurant we spotted Vito’s Tavern so we stopped in there and sampled a couple of pints of Sam Adams Brick Red…they were mighty good.

SamAdamsBrickRed

From there we moved across the street for our dinner at Rabia’s…the real reason we included Boston in this year’s travels…we were going by anyway and it’s almost the best Italian place we’ve eaten at. We quickly got settled into our requested table right by the front window and ordered a couple glasses of vino.

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We had some really outstanding bread…very chewy crust, soft interior…and then ordered dinner…the Lobster Risotto for Connie and Lobster Ravioli for Neil. The risotto was basically mushroom risotto with several types of mushrooms toped with the meat from a 1.25 pound lobster…expensive but worth it. The ravioli came in a serving of 5 about 3 inches square stuffed with lobster, basil, and cheese and covered with a sauce made with more lobster, lobster roe to give it the nice coral color, and champagne instead of wine. Both were really outstanding…well worth the trip into town and the $28 parking fee at the garage…and Connie brought home enough for dinner leftovers the next night. Several passers by looked longingly at our dinners but Neil had his fork ready to defend them from any marauders.

After dinner we headed home and after out tummies being stuffed eased a bit sampled 1 each of Mike’s and Modern’s pastry…we split a caramel pecan one from Mikes and a ricotta pistachio one from Modern. The verdict…Mikes by a landslide. They’re larger and tastier. We’ll try again tonight…the second one we brought from Modern we got filled with vanilla custard instead of the usual ricotta cheese mixture…we’ll see if that makes a difference.

Friday we headed north to Salem…home of the famous witch trials back in 1693 to visit the house owned by Judge Jonathan Corwin who was the judge in charge of the trials. We skipped the Disney like creations since that sort of thing just isn’t our thing. What actually happened was that the young daughter and niece if Reverend Samuel Parris came down with what the record describes as “fits beyond the power of natural disease” and someone claimed that there were 3 women who had bewitched them…Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne, and and a black Caribbean slave woman named Tituba. Eventually 25 People were tried and executed for witchcraft…it’s thought today that some sort of inter family feud was likely behind the original accusations. A total of 150 people were originally arrested and the trials only stopped when the governor’s wife was accused and he put a stop to it.

The Witch House as it is known today was built between 1620 and 1642 and was a virtual mansion for the time…about 3500 square feet over 3 floors plus an attic. It’s the only still existing structure in Salem that has direct ties to the trials. We looked at it more as a historical reference into how they lived back in the late 1600s in Salem and really didn’t concentrate much on the trials part.

One thing we did find out was the human fat was frequently used back then as a base for applying ointments and such…and that fat from executed criminals was considered to be the finest sort of human fat to use for this…it was usually sold afterwards by the executioners of the time. There were numerous exhibits of 1600s medicine and an amazing number of them involved parts of human beings.

Front view of the house…we entered through the gift shop in the rear…the doors are only about 5.5 feet tall…Neil had to duck to enter.

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Main dining table in the kitchen with the stove/fireplace/oven in the left rear.

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One of the medical exhibits…apparently if you had epilepsy you could cure it by taking the brains as well as various other body parts of a young man who died a violent death…pureeing it, mixing it with wine, and drinking it. Who knew?

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Loom in the second story of the house.

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Spinning wheel.

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The upscale bed they slept on…a rope hammock in a frame with a mattress stuffed with straw…or likely feathers for a rich man like Judge Corwin.

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Stairwell…very narrow and steep.

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After the Witch House we headed over to the Lobster Shanty for lunch…couple of pints of Guinness and a couple of crab cakes…mighty tasty and we met a couple of characters whilst sitting at the bar. Like Neil always says…you meet a much better class of bum when sitting at the bar.

After lunch we gave up on any more stops where we needed to park…because we were out of quarters. We did drive by the old Custom House that Nathanial Hawthorne used when he was the Custom Agent…before he went on to write “The Scarlet Letter”.

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Across from the Custom House you can see the tall ship Friendship of Salem…or at least you could if it wasn’t off getting rebuilt. It’s actually not an old ship but a replica. The original Friendship was built in 1797 and served as an East Indiamen trading vessel until it was seized by the British during the War of 1812. A second Friendship was built by the original owners in the 1815 and served in the pepper trade until it was seized by Malay pirates in 1831. A full rigged scale model was built in 1804 by the original ship’s carpenter on a voyage to China and presented to the owners…this model was used to built a 171 foot replica in 2000. It stays stationary most of the year but sails occasionally.

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An photo of the wharf used by the Historical Site from the late 1800s…both Friendships were gone by then but this is a very similar 3 masted square rigged vessel.

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On to interesting things found on the net.

PreviewDocument 5

PreviewDocument 6

Cyas.

 

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Centerville VA and Transit to Boston MA

Well…this is another mostly filler post just so ya’ll will know we’re still alive…but the good news is that the “commitments” portion of the summer is done and we’re finally ready for some Fun Stuff©.

We left Pocahontas State Park in Chesterfield VA as scheduled and made the 120 mile or so drive up to the DC ‘burbs and settled into our usual site113 at Bull Run Regional Park…this is one of the few sites there that actually had satellite visibility. Alas…the trees have grown up since our last visit and there’s no visibility anymore…which means no Direct TV…which means no recordings…which means unhappy Connie. The good news is that we completely watched and deleted our backlog of recorded shows.

We were in the DC area almost exclusively for commitments…the first day there we had dental cleanings and a couple cavities filled along with a meeting with our financial folks from Cassaday and Company. All is well on both fronts. 

We spent the rest of our time catching up on a few more things we needed to do…and it rained…and rained…and rained…and rained. Every stinkin’ day…it rained. And not your pleasant April showers either…downpours. It was so bad that for 2 days the main area of the Bull Run Regional Park was flooded by overflow from Bull Run…and the campground had to open an emergency exit through the back of the campground out by the shooting center to the park access road.

The only bright spot was Neil’s birthday (64) while we were there. We headed over to the Renaissance Cafe…one of our favorite high class (i.e., expensive) eateries…we’ve probably eaten there 20 or 25 times over the years. It’s a French-Italian place…and naturally being such dinner takes 2 to 3 hours. We had a Lobster Ravioli and Potato Gnocchi appetizer to split, Connie had salmon and Neil had Veal Picatta…then since it was his birthday they brought our a dessert plate for us…fudge, creme brulee, mocha ice cream, and a slice of cake sorta like tiramisu. We managed to force all of it down but were both pretty full…in fact Neil went to bed early as he wasn’t feeling well (overstuffed) after we got home.

Next morning…we got up early to start the transit to Boston…and you guessed it…it was raining. We had a 380 mile trip up I-81 to Harpursville NY for an overnight stop at Belden Campground…and the whole day we were in and out of heavy rain and fog. And the road…I gotta tell ya…I-81 in PA is probably the worst road we’ve ever been on.

Last nite…it rained hard again overnight but by this morning it was mostly just cloudy. We had a couple of leaks from slide seals we had to mop…since it was an overnight stop we didn’t unhitch Big Red…which meant that we weren’t level either fore and aft or side to side…with our 1.5 degree list to starboard (passenger side) the rain that would normally run right off the slide top instead ran over to the seal, back to the rear of the slide, and in through the seal there to puddle on the floor. We’ve got some wet towels we’ll lay out in the sun tomorrow to dry out…not the first time it’s happened and probably won’t be the last either.

The weather was nice today for the last 300 miles over to Mansfield MA just south of Boston…it sprinkled a couple of times but was mostly just miles moving…although it got pretty rough on the road surface (albeit not as bad as 81 in PA was)…and the traffic  got pretty crappy by the time we were within 100 miles of Boston.

We pulled in and got settled…in one of the 2 or 3 sites in Canoe River Campground here that has satellite visibility and were able to sync up…although we had to shift from multi-sat to single sat on bird 101 to do so…luckily 101 is all you really need. Connie’s setup the batch of recordings she’s saved up the last 2 weeks .

We touched base with our old college buddy Patricia Balzarini…she lives in Miami in the winter and comes back north to Dedham MA near Boston for the summers and lives in the house she inherited from her parents. We’re planning on getting together Memorial Day for some grilling with her here at the park.

We’ve got some Fun Stuff© scheduled for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday including dinner at Rabia’s Italian Restaurant in Boston…one of the best we’ve eaten at…but I’ll talk about all that stuff in my next post…which I promise should have some Fun Stuff© and photos in it.

Just a couple quickie things from the net this week…

They wanted to provide disabled access up this stairway I guess.

DisabledAccess

If pets could talk.

IfAnimalsCouldTalk

Cyas.

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Richmond VA and Grand Baby Alex

Can’t really report much…or rather, any…Fun Stuff© this week except for grand baby Alex time…so just a quick catch up post today.

Wed May 9 we departed Savannah GA and with an overnight stop at Fayetteville RV in Wade NC just north of the city for an easy in/out pull through no unhitching required. We headed out to a local place Scrub Oak Grill and Pub for dinner…Neil had a cheese steak and Connie had a scallop salad along with a couple of pints. The food was OK but nothing to really rave about…but it was the only place close.

Next morning…Connie headed out really early about 0700 so that she could get to the Richmond area in time for the Mother/Grandmother Day thing at Alex’s pre-school…Neil followed her an hour or two later and parked in the check in area at Pocahontas State Park for 30 minutes or so as he made better time than he thought he would. Connie got there and we got quickly backed into our reserved site 109…and almost immediately found that the trees had grown and we had no satellite visibility…Neil even tried going to single satellite 101 as that’s really the only one you need but the dish wouldn’t lock on. We were supposed to be in 109 again in the fall…so that evening Neil called and got our reservation changed to 108 which does allow peeking past the trees for satellite visibility.

Dinner that night was leftovers…and we headed over to the human kids the next morning…and spent pretty much every day visiting the kids and Alex. Most of the time we went over there…and we took the kids out to the Japanese Steak House for dinner…unfortunately Yamato has gone way downhill since the last time we ate there 8 or 9 years ago…so we won’t be eating there again. Service was lousy, they did away with the show at the Teppanyaki Grill that the chefs used to do, and the whole experience and menu has been cheapened to the point that it’s not really worth the price anymore.

The next to last night here…the kids came over after Jen got off of work and we had pulled pork Neil made in the crockpot…it musta been good as there were no leftovers…then we had some carrot cake for later. Alex had a sleepover and after watching some cartoons and such…grandparents are s’posed to spoil them ya know…went down about 2000 for the night on his mattress up in the bedroom in the rig. Shortly after that we had a pretty good rainstorm and although it wasn’t too windy or hail-ey in the park there were about 32,000 power outages as a result…including the park. No worries for us…we turned off the A/C, opened the windows as it had cooled off but was pretty humid, and put the fans on for ventilation. Neil got up to recycle beer at 0239 and the power was back on by then…we had moved Alex’s mattress out to in front of the TV when we went to bed and he slept straight through until 0530.

After breakfast of English Muffins and coffee we headed over to the kids house as Alex had pre-school…after the we visited with Alex and Bryan until he headed off to work. Jen came home from school an hour or so later and after another hour or so visiting we said our “until next times”, invited Alex for another sleepover in October…5 months as he counted up on the calendar…and headed home. Dinner was leftovers from Yamato the other night.

Tomorrow we’re off on a 125 mile trip to northern VA…we’ll be in site 113 at Bull Run Regional Park again…there are only a few sites there that have satellite visibility so we always try to get 113 if it’s available. While in the area…we’ve got dental appointments (cleanings), a meeting with Nick our financial guy, an oil change for Big Red, and Neil’s birthday. Nothing else really planned although we might eat at our favorite sushi place one night if we feel like braving the traffic to get there.

Interesting things found on the net.

Well, we didn’t actually find this one on the net…here’s Alex and Jen.

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In a lot of households…there’s an ongoing argument about which way the toilet paper should be installed on the roll…does it feed off the top or the bottom? Well…going back to the original patent application in 1891…there is a definitive answer. Clearly…the patent applicant never had a cat…because those damn things will just paw at it until the whole roll is on the floor.

DebateSettled

Standards.

Standards

Truisms.

FoodAndDiets

We’ve often been asked what retirement is like…we usually reply by saying we’re so busy that we wonder how we ever got by when we had to work too…then I saw this which perfectly illustrates our goal in life now…although for us it’s rum, draft craft beer, and merlot.

RetirementIsWhatYouMakeOfIt

Damned autocorrect.

DamnAutoCorrect

And finally…DumDum.

DumDum

Cyas.

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Savannah GA IV

Well…the concert yesterday afternoon was excellent…Connie really enjoyed it as it was all Renaissance music mostly by Italian composers…Neil thought it was OK but at least he didn’t not like it. The concert lasted about an hour and then we headed off 10 or 12 miles southeast to a place called The Wyld Dock…it was right on the marsh and is a bar/seafood place.

Dinner was good…at least the food part was. Service was less than stellar and the overall ambiance was something less than we thought it would be…Connie had worn a dress and heels to the concert so we were way, way overdressed for this place…although we did see women in outfits with skirts they were mostly either sun dresses or bathing suit coverups. In addition…the noseeums were out so Connie got sort of ate on…Neil is pretty much immune to biting bugs as long as Connie is around…he calls her his ‘skeeter magnet since she has A blood and he has B hers is a lot sweeter than his.

We stayed long enough to have an order of scallop corn fritters and a bowl each of crab chowder…food was good. Connie had a Victoria Amber (a Mexican brew) and Neil a Suitcase…which was some concoction of Goslings rum, juice, bitters and nutmeg…it was too frou-frou and was basically a waste of perfectly good Goslings rum. Afterwards…we thought about another drink…but it was getting on to sunset and the bugs were getting worse so we headed home and drank our own beer.

Alexandillo tweeted a nice photo last night…that’s grand baby Alex’s twitter handle.

AlexandilloTwitterPost

Connie looked so happy at the concert that Neil decided to take a picture of her.

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Unfortunately…by the time he took the picture she opened her eyes and looked around and the above “what the heck are you doing” look is not the smiling, happy face she was displaying milliseconds before he snapped this shot.

She also took a shot of the view from The Wyld…the view was nice and they had a drive up dock for boaters who wanted to stop and have some eats or drinks.

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Monday morning after breakfast we headed off for…you guessed it…more Fun Stuff©. Today’s adventure was a trip about 12 miles north into the southern portion of South Carolina to visit the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge…it had been reported to us that it was an outstanding place to visit. We stopped on the way to get some gas and more bug repellent…we were considering a mile hike around the pond after we did the 4 mile loop drive…but by the time we were done it was hot and we were hungry so we skipped the hike and headed home…grabbing a couple of cheeseburgers from the Golden Arches on the way back. While we were out…the lady that owns the campground called us…apologized profusely for the noise last Saturday night, and told us she credited one nights stay back to our credit card. There’s a barn on the property of Red Gate CG that’s used for weddings. Saturday night they had music going on until about 2230…it wasn’t that loud but when the party broke up there was a lot of whooping and hollering, engines being raced, and general debauchery going on…at least the way she told the story. We actually didn’t think it was too bad and by 2245 when we went to bed it had quieted down…would not have bothered Neil anyway as his auditory enablers get removed when he goes to bed. Still…the owner said that wasn’t the way they wanted to do business…apologized again and insisted on giving us 1 night credit back. We also asked her if we could break out the pressure washer long enough to wash the dead love bugs off the front of the rig…she said that was fine so after our burgers Neil went out and spent 20 minutes or so blasting them off.

Ok…let’s get on to the photos.

The first thing I can tell you is…the wildlife in southern SC is pretty much the same as the wildlife in SW FL…but then the climate and ecosystems are pretty much the same…Savannah is a relatively swampy area so there’s your normal complement of wading birds, water fowl, and gators. We weren’t all that impressed with seeing gators being as we’re from deep in the heart of gator country now…but the visitors we ran into from San Diego were mightily impressed with the…and you need to read this next part with that deep voice that the guy on Swamp People uses…”Massive Leviathans”.

The Savannah NWR is located just north of the Savannah River over on the SC side…and is in an area that…back in the day…was composed solely of rice plantations. The 4 mile loop drive basically goes along the top of some of the dikes that separated the rice paddies which have been allowed to go back to the nature wanted them to be.

As usual…all photos and plant life shots are Connie’s as Neil isn’t interested much in them. As we started off from the visitor center…Neil went ahead and mounted the bird lens on the camera and put his “normal walking around lens” 18-300mm lens on Connie’s camera instead of her usual wide angle to normal 18-55mm lens…that way she has a little more reach for things that are out a bit farther.

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This Great Blue Heron had a fish for breakfast then promptly started looking for his second course.

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Brown Headed Cowbird.

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Breeding American Pipit…Connie identified this for us with Peterson’s as she’s got more patience than he does.

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‘Chute him.

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Red Wing Blackbird…this was a pretty outstanding pose for this species…normally all you can see of them is the next shot.

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American Coots.

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Dragonfly.

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Great Egret.

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Snowy Egret…only about 2/3 the height of the Great Egret above…and one of the shots that Connie was able to get using Neil’s longer lens than her short one. He’s offered to get her a longer range zoom…but she doesn’t want to carry that much weight.

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View of the moss covered road down the dike.

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Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay…wasting time.

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Another Red Wing Blackbird sitting on a fence post.

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With that our tour of the Savannah NWR was finished…although we did stop back by the visitor center to complete our second geocache. This one required gathering info from 4 different spots along the drive and from within the visitor center…the 4 digits recovered are the combination to the the lockbox containing the cache. We successfully completed that as well and logged the find.

I have to give mucho credit to Connie…she picked an excellent dinner recipe tonight. Sure…Neil cooked it but she found this chicken recipe with a honey/orange/hot pepper sauce that was really, really good…so good that we save the rest of the sauce for something else later. Had some noodles and Parmigiano-Reggiano to go along with it…it was outstanding.

Next up…Tuesday’s trip to the home of the Mighty 8th Air Force Museum…but it wasn’t actually an Air Force at the time…it’s official name was the VIII Bomber Command and it was responsible for the bombing campaign targeted against German forces in Europe during WW-II. VIII Bomber Command was established in January 1942 in Savannah GA…hence the museum is located here. It deployed aircraft to England through the spring and summer and initiated operations in August 1942, attacking the railroad marshaling yards in Rouen-Sotteville France.. Early missions suffered heavy losses as the Luftwaffe was more experienced at the time and training was limited before operations began. Experience quickly overcome the early losses and by the end of the war the unit was sending missions up up to 1,000 bombers escorted by 800 fighters. Forces of this command were principally responsible for the destruction of German military equipment factories, oil industry facilities, air bases, and transportation.

Restored B-17 “City of Savannah”…the B-17 Flying Fortress was one of two bombers operated by the command capable of a maximum payload of 6,000 pounds of bombs although this was usually restricted to 4,000 at the ranges required for targets in Nazi controlled areas. The other was the B-24 Liberator which was built Consolidated Aircraft…the company known today as General Dynamics. The B-24 was faster and had an 8,000 pound payload which was restricted to 6,000 pounds at the mission ranges required but the B-17 was a far tougher aircraft to attack and shoot down due to more defensive armament and a much tougher airframe…hence it’s name Flying Fortress. These bomb loads were large for the time but by the of the war the B-29 (which dropped the atomic bombs on Japan) had increased the payload to 16,000 pounds. Contrast this with current bombers…the F/A-18 single seat fighter bomber has a payload of 13,700 pounds and the B-52 bomber payload is around 70,000 pounds. A B-52 pilot Neil talked to in the officers club back in the day told him that with 1000 pound bombs the aircraft ran out of places to hang them before it ran out of payload. 

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The belly turret on the B-17…it’s operator was lucky as he could enter the turret from inside the aircraft…the tail turret required the gunner to enter it from his own exterior hatch before takeoff…with essentially no real access to the tail turret from inside the remainder of the aircraft.

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Scale model of a B-24 Liberator.

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Restored Boeing-Stearman Model 75 Kaydet training aircraft.

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As I said up above…the B-17 was pretty hard to bring down. This photo…sorry it’s a lousy image but it’s a photo of a photo…shows a B-17 that successfully returned to base after having it’s nose shot off over Germany…take a look at the shots of the whole plane above and you can see that the antiaircraft flak shell blew off everything forward of the cockpit…killing the bombardier who sits in the clear plexiglass nose…although the shell didn’t break anything vital and the aircraft remained flying for 3 or 4 hours to return to it’s base.

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Open bomb bay doors on the B-17.

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Vietnam era F-4C Phantom…the workhorse of the air war there in both fighter and bomber roles…and proof positive that if you put large enough engines on it you can make a brick fly…it’s the world’s faster converter of high quality jet fuel to black smoke. This is the same kind of aircraft that resulted in Neil’s meeting the mayor of Auburn AL back during his NROTC tour at Auburn University…I’ll put the long version of the story in the blog on another day when I don’t have much to say…but long story short he got a couple of these to do a flyover for a commissioning ceremony at the ROTC programs. Turns out that Auburn AL has some rules about aircraft over city limits…500 foot minimum altitude, no afterburners, and no supersonic speeds…unfortunately (and unbeknownst to him) the weekend warrior pilots who flew the flyover violated each of these. The participants and attendees of the commissioning ceremony were duly and mightily impressed…the mayor not so much…hence Neil getting invited to her office to ‘splain himself as he was responsible for them being there.

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Soviet MIG-17…a Korean era daylight only fighter…which although developed didn’t see service during the war as production was concentrated on the MIG-15 instead. IT was still in use in the early part of the Vietnam War.

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With that…our tour of the museum was done so we headed home via Walmart to pick up some groceries. Not sure if we’re eating in or going out tonight…it’s still under what we call “dynamic observation” at this point. Tomorrow we’re heading off northwards…an overnight stop near Fayetteville NC before arriving in the Richmond VA area to see grand baby Alex on Thursday…we’ll stay again at Pocahontas State Park while we’re there for 6 nights before continuing on up to the Fairfax VA area for a few days.

Interesting things found on the net.

I wonder what happened to the first one?

WonderWhatHappenedToTheFirstOne

That’s dark…note the portrait of Dad on the wall..

ThatsDark

Couple of interesting RVs.

ATT00002

ATT00007

Cyas.

 

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Savannah GA III

Saturday was another day for Fun Stuff©. After coffee and some cottage cheese and blueberries that Connie made…we packed up and headed out about 0930 for our destination for the day…a hike at Skidaway Island State Park.

Skidaway Island State Park is…strangely enough…located on Skidaway Island…which is separated from the mainland by the Skidaway River. Now I’m not quite understanding how if it’s a river that makes it an island…but I took a gander at the map and I guess it all comes down to what you call a river, what you call an island, and the whole swampy coastline round the Savannah area. 

Farthest north is the Savannah River which flows inland along the GA/SC border…in fact it is the border…to the city of Savannah. South of the Savannah River there’s a whole passle of tributary rivers, creeks, channels, and such…and most of them act like regular rivers heading inland with sort of peninsula like parts of land between them…among these are the Ogeechee, Little Ogeechee, Vernon, and Wilmington Rivers. In between the Vernon and Wilmington rivers running basically parallel to the coast is a single piece of water that separates the mainland on the west from Skidaway Island to the east…this river is either the Skidaway or Moon Rivers or Shipyard Creek depending on which of the names on the map you choose to believe. But to be fair it does completely separate Skidaway Island from the mainland…but I digress too much into geographic minutia I believe.

Connie wanted me to tell ya ‘bout the frog incident…last Tuesday evening we discovered a stowaway…he was just a sitting there right in front of our fridge…one of the itty bitty tree frogs that we found a lot down in North Fort Myers…well, apparently he decided to head north for the summer and hitched a ride. Neil evicted him straightaway…put it out in the grass at Meera’s RV…thats as far north as he’s getting with us. He didn’t have a passport so we clearly needed to not be complicit in his illegal immigration to Canuckistan later on next month.

This morning we found out that one of the hard drives on our file server died…luckily Neil had ordered another couple to be delivered to the human kids house this week and his backup routines made sure that we didn’t lose any data. He’ll have to figure out how to get it replaced under warranty I guess.

Ok…on to Skidaway Island State Park. We got to the entrance and Connie went in to pay our $5 per car entry fee and it turned out that retired military only have to pay $3.75. She didn’t have her ID on her and offered to go out and have Neil come in but the lady at the desk took her word for it and we got ourselves parked. Our hike for the day was a combination of four trails…we started on the Sandpiper Trail Loop, switched over to the Avian Loop, then the Connector Trail and ended up on the Big Ferry Trail back to the parking lot…essentially a large clockwise loop of about 3 miles. It took us just under 1 hour and 7 minutes including our stops…it was a pretty flat and easy trail with boardwalks over portions that are submerged at high tide.Image 1

This turned out to be a pretty decent walk in the woods…but it was kinda minimal as wildlife sightings went…but you can only photograph what you see I guess.

First up were some Fiddler Crabs…a single one on a dry section of the salt marsh and a rumble of them a bit farther down the boardwalk in a wet section.

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We spotted a female cardinal.

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And passed through some old Confederate fortification trenches…these were originally setup to defend the island but were abandoned when their forces were about to be cut off by the Union Navy and the forces retreated to Fort Pulaski as I discussed the other day.

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Passed some flowering prickly pears.

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We stopped along the Skidaway River for a water break.

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Connie heard and then spotted…and Neil re-spotted him when he flew to another tree…a Pileated Woodpecker…of Woody Woodpecker fame. Sorry ‘bout the not so great photo…but he flew away before Neil could get the bird lens out…but as I said you do the best you can.

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At the observation tower…located about the 2 mile mark on the above map at the far north end of our loop…this dragonfly was sitting about 15 feet away on top of a tree.

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And Connie got some general overview shots from the tower.

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We met a couple of nice middle aged ladies on a walk with their dog at the observation tower before heading the last mile back to the car and heading home for lunch. Neil wanted to stop for a Margarita…it was Cinco de Mayo…but we decided to go have lunch instead. We completely ignored the Kentucky Derby later on in the afternoon and had Carne Asada Tacos for dinner

Sunday morning we headed off to Mass then afterwards Neil made an omelet out of leftover quesadilla from the other night at the pub and black beans and rice we had left over ourselves. This afternoon we’re off to an organ/voice recital at the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist…then off to dinner but I’ll report on that in my next missive.

Interesting things found on the net.

ThisSign

EveryTime

It finally happened.

ItsFinallyHappened

AbeLincolnInternet

Cyas.

Posted in RV, Travel | Leave a comment

Savannah GA II

I hope you people realize the troubles we go through on your account…it’s ridikilous as Sylvester the cat would say.

Today’s mission was to visit both the Tybee Island Lighthouse about 20 miles east of here right at the mouth of the Savannah River and then visit Fort Pulaski which is located on Cockspur Island…the latter is located just north of Tybee Island in the middle of the river.

Anyways…the troubles were due to having to get up in the middle of the doggoned night to start…we wanted to be over at the lighthouse at sunrise to get the best light for this shot…well, Neil wanted to be there for sunrise anyway, I can’t say that anybody else ‘round here was all that enthusiastic about it…but anyways that meant we had to leave the campground at 0530…which meant that the alarm went off at 0430. 

What’s up with these humans anyway…don’t they realize a bear needs his beauty sleep and if it’s dark then you’re s’posed to be asleep and not up wandering around the countryside?

Once Connie had made coffee in our go-cups…we packed up cameras, water, and all the usual paraphernalia and headed out…arriving at the lighthouse grounds just a couple minutes before sunrise…but instead of the golden sunrise-y light we hoped to see there were some clouds…but one deals with the hand you’re given so we quickly decided that moody lighthouse photos would be the order of the day.

Oh bother.

The current Tybee Island Light is the 4th tower located at the site…although the first two weren’t lit…so I guess you really can’t call them lighthouses. The first wooden one was built in 1736 and washed away in a storm in 1741. It was replaced by a stone and wood version the following year…and the second succumbed to shoreline erosion. The third was a brick tower 100 feet tall erected in 1773 with a candle lit light and retrofitted with oil lamps in 1790. The third tower was burned and the fresnel lens for the light removed to nearby Fort Pulaski in 1862 during the civil war. After the war was over construction of a new light started in 1866 and after several modifications reached it’s current height of 144 feet in the late 1880s. Automated in 1972 it still serves as a navigational aid for entering the Savannah River…but instead of having a rotating mirror behind the Fresnel lens to produce a periodic rotating beam it is a fixed always-on white light. The light is one of seven remaining colonial era lighthouses in the US.

OK…so what did we see.

Different views of Tybee Island Light to start with.

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Connie grabbed this one with the moon in the background.

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While Neil got a wider view from the same location at the same time

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Afterwards we walked over to the beach and took a shot looking back west towards the light.

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While Connie got this artsy-fartsy shot of the beach at sunrise with sea grass in the foreground.

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Our second stop for the day was Fort Pulaski…so let’s talk about it a little.

It was named after Casimir Pulaski…the Polish officer who fought for the colonies during the Revolutionary War. After the city of Washington DC was burned by the British during the war of 1812…President Madison had a series of forts established along the eastern seaboard to protect our ports and cities from bombardment. Fort Pulaski on Cockspur Island just north of Tybee Island was one of these forts…it was actually designed, laid out, surveyed and had a portion of the construction supervised by a fellow you might have heard of…a young Army 2nd Lieutenant on his first assignment after graduating from West Point…by the name of Robert E. Lee. The fort was constructed of masonry with 7.something million bricks and was considered to be invulnerable…the only place it could be bombarded from was Tybee Island and at ranges of over a mile masonry forts were considered invulnerable to bombardment by smooth bore artillery firing round shot. In 1861…shortly before Georgia seceded from the Union…the governor ordered the lightly manned, almost undefended, and somewhat broken down fort to be seized for the state. With it’s artillery commanding both the wider north and narrow south passages of the Savannah River around Cockspur Island…it was ideal to protect the port of Savannah…and because of it’s range to Tybee Island the Confederates weren’t really worried about it being attacked. Around this same time…Tybee Island Light was burned and the Fresnel lens moved as I discussed earlier. The Confederates spent the next 15 months or so returning the fort to truly operational status and the Union commander at the time on Tybee Island Captain Quincy Gilmore believed that only an overwhelming bombardment would threaten the fort. He set up 11 batteries along the north shore of Tybee Island including mostly smooth bore artillery and mortars but also had 10 of the newly developed rifled Parrot and James rifles which…as it turned out…were the guns that caused the fort to surrender.

After rejection of a surrender demand by the Union forces…Union artillery opened fire early on April 10, 1862 and fired about 3,000 rounds against the southeast side of the fort. The mortars were ineffective as were the smoothbore artillery initially…but the rifled Parrot and James rifles had enough penetrating power to loosen the masonry and then followup impacts from the smoothbores finished knocking the loosened brickwork down. By the end of the day…the southeast wall of the fort had been breached.

Early the next morning the bombardment resumed and by early afternoon shells from Tybee Island were entering through the breached southeast wall and impacting the northwest wall from the inside…perilously close to the fort’s main magazine with 20 tons of black powder inside. Realizing that a single lucky shot would result in the destruction of the fort and the loss of all his men…and with most of the Confederate cannon out of action by this time…the fort was surrendered by Colonel Charles Olmstead.

The quick fall of the fort was the death knell of masonry fortifications as it…despite being considered one of the most strongest forts in the country…proved that masonry structures could not stand up to bombardment by high caliber rifled artillery. Interestingly enough…Fort Jefferson in the Dry Tortuga Islands west of Key West Florida is of similar construction and was essentially abandoned as a defensive structure by the Union after the destruction of Fort Pulaski.

Ok…on to some photos from the fort.

The demilune in front of the fort’s main entrance. Deminlune is French for half moon and serves as a barrier to easy access for attackers to a fort’s main entrance. The entrance is behind and the entire fort is surrounded by a 7 foot deep moat. Of note…the main entrance of the fort has a drawbridge with inner and outer doors along the entrance sally port and musket slits for firing into invaders if they managed to cross the moat and breach the outer doors. Since it’s got both a moat and a drawbridge…it must be a castle, right?

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One of the Confederate artillery along the top of the southeast wall…you can see it was struck during the bombardment and damaged.

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A panoramic view looking south towards Tybee Island across the southern passage around Cockspur Island…the 36 Union artillery pieces were divided into 9 batteries essentially across the width of this shot…it’s just over a mile from the fort wall to the battery positions on Tybee.

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Damage to the interior side of the northwest wall…this was caused by round shot that entered through the southeast wall behind the camera position after it was breached by the combination of James/Parrot rifle and smoothbore artillery. The northwest magazine is directly underneath these impact points and the Union actually had on shell detonate just inside the magazine access tunnel…but the turns and corners in the tunnel prevented it from getting into the magazine.

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Two shots of the outside of the southeast wall with damage due to impacts. The breach point was just a round the corner you can see. Union forces repaired the damage after the fort was taken and remained in control of it until the end of the war. After the war the fort was used as a prison for a time before being abandoned and then eventually turned into a National Monument in 1924.

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Actual casualties during the bombardment were almost nonexistent…the fort had 3 injured personnel and the single loss of life was a Union soldier at one of the batteries on Tybee Island.

With that our day’s Fun Stuff© was done. We were originally going to hike out to the eastern end of Cockspur Island to get some photos of the smaller Cockspur Island Lighthouse which marks the entrance to the south channel…but it was getting hot, we were tired, and the ‘skeeters were pretty fierce…so we packed it in, came home with a stop by Scuba Steve’s Fish Market to get some fresh grouper for dinner, and had a nap since we got up so early.

Interesting things found on the net.

It’s important to have accuracy on your tax returns…even in the UK.

TaxReturnAccuracy

Captain Crunch has been lyin’ to us all this time…he’s just a Commander.

Lies

Why people have trust issues.

WhyPeopleHaveTrustIssues

And a couple of groaners for ya’.

GroanersCyas.

 

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Launch Day and Savannah GA

We’re parked here in site 1 at Red Gate RV in Savannah GA as I type this missive…but I digress slightly…let me catch ya up with events since my last post ‘afore I get to the Fun Stuff©.

When last I posted…we had just over a week to go and about a dozen items left on the Pre-Underway Checklist. Neil and Connie…well, mostly him until the last day or so when she did the inside stuff…kept plugging away and by mid afternoon Sunday he had completed everything on the outside list except dumping and flushing our waste tanks which he left until Monday. Our level indicators…we have SeeLevel II systems installed which are a lot better than the float switch type as they have ultrasonic sensors outside the tank that see what the levels are…anyway they still get inaccurate after awhile as gunk gets stuck on the sides of the tank and it’s particularly worse after long periods of non-moving the rig. Our black tank indicator displayed about 17% when it was empty and after about 2 days read 92%…luckily we’re well aware that it takes about 16 or 17 days to actually fill the tank so we’ve just been dumping it about every 14 over the winter. We’ve also developed “toilet-whisperer” ears and you can tell by ear when it’s getting close to full. The gray tank was reading 0 when empty and progressed normally up to about 30% then went to 100…again luckily we’re aware that it’s about 4 days to fill with our normal water usage.  Neil’s flushed them a couple times over the winter but without any motion on the rig it just doesn’t do much.

The solution to the tank sensor issue is pretty easy…after he dumped and flushed so all the loose stuff was gone on Monday he filled both tanks to about 50% and then added 3 gallons of white vinegar and a couple of cups of Dawn degreaser dish detergent to each tank. The plan was to just let that slosh around on our first two travel days and then dump/flush when we arrived in Savannah.

We had dinner at the Elks…Broasted Chicken…which is a fancy term for fried in a pressure cooker…on Monday night and had enough left overs for another meal later…we originally planned this for Wednesday night but ended up changing our minds Tuesday afternoon. After dinner we passed along “until next time in the fall” to our Lodge friends and headed home.

We got up Tuesday morning and Neil wasn’t feeling too well…but we had to leave so he bored on we got hitched, said our “until next times” to friends at Seminole and hit the road. He felt pretty lousy all day and we arrived 228 miles later at Meera’s RV in Citra FL…it’s on US-301 between Ocala and Gainesville. We had our choice of sites…only 1 was filled by the campground owners. It wasn’t really much to write home about…but it was 30 yards from the highway and easy in/out so for an overnight stop it was perfect. We ended up having the leftover chicken mixed into some noodles as after he had some afternoon snack and rested he was feeling better but not great. They finally decided he was just having a bit o’ angst over starting travel again…he’s always worried that something will break the first couple of travel days.

Wednesday morning we hit the road and continued up US-301 to the intersection with I-10 west of Jacksonville…and instead of taking the under construction portion of I-10 and the Jacksonville I-295 beltway we continued on up 301…a beautiful 4 lane highway with practically no traffic…to the intersection with I-95 about 8 miles south of the FL/GA border then turned north towards Savannah.

As we approached Savannah about 1330…we spotted the overhead sign with a message…Neil called Connie on the radio and said “you don’t see that every day”. The sign said “State Road 21 Closed due to Plane Crash.” We had no real idea what had actually happened until later…it turned out that a C-130 belonging to the Puerto Rico National Guard had crashed on takeoff about 1130 killing all 9 souls on board…the airport is about 10 miles NE of Red Gate CG and the road closure is immediately to the east of the airport. At this point the cause of the accident is unknown but witnesses reported that it stalled and pan-caked into the median on the highway…news footage showed that only the tail section was still recognizable as part of an aircraft. Our sympathies go out to the lost souls and their families…the aircraft was taking off on it’s final flight out to Arizona to the Aircraft Boneyard as it was being retired…but aircraft age may or may not have actually had anything to do with the accident.

Neil was completely recovered from his earlier stomach troubles…so we headed out to the Tailgate Sports Bar and Grill for dinner…no drafts there but they did have about 100 bottled/canned beers. We sampled Left Hand Brewery Milk Stout, Dragons Milk Stout, Abita Amber, and Terrapin Golden Ale along with a plate of Southwest Egg Rolls and a Quesadilla for dinner before heading home. 

Neil got this shot of our site 1 at Red Gate CG…it’s actually a lot nicer than we thought it would be from looking at the satellite photos on google maps. Gravel pad with surrounding grass and plenty of space between sites. We’ll be here 7 days and have plenty o’ Fun Stuff© planned.

RedGateCGSite1

While Neil was in the head…actually known ‘round these parts as the “Used Beer Recycling Facility” or UBRF…and pronounced youburf…he noticed this over the deposit facility…he’s never actually seen a urinal flowmeter before but this particular one has processed 3,747,985 gallons of input since installation…he can confirm that it went up 1 gallon through his efforts.

ToiletfFlowMeter

Ok, on to Fun Stuff©. Today’s mission was to visit the Wormsloe Historic site, Jones Street and the Candler Oak so let’s get right to it.

In order to ‘splain the Wormsloe Historic Site…a little history is in order. As you may…or more likely may not…know, the colony of Georgia was founded in 1733 by a group of British Utopian folks and…amazingly enough…was founded with slavery being illegal as they thought that having slaves would cause the colonists to “become an entitled aristocratic landowner class rather than yeoman farmers” that the Utopians thought was preferable. One of the colonists was named Noble Jones…although he wasn’t a noble at all but rather a carpenter. By tradition back then…carpenters did their own surveying and because old Noble was one of the trusted confidants of the colony director James Oglethorpe he ended up with a whole series of unpaid tasks…surveyor, doctor, constable, captain of the militia. He continued to juggle these assigned tasks…performing none of them well as he was over-extended…for about 3 years when the colony organizers back in England sent out a representative to figure out why the colony wasn’t progressing as fast as the organizers wanted. Several of the other colonists complained that Noble hadn’t got around to surveying their land (each colonist was limited to 500 acres) and hence they weren’t able to grow anything. Despite Noble’s insistence that he was overloaded and underpaid…the rep reported back to the organizers that he was an “indolent man”…as a result he was fired from all of his positions. Not being too happy at being labeled a slacker due to no fault of his own…he determined to take up his 500 acres south of the city and show them he was as industrious as the next colonist.

He founded the estate of Wormsloe…which was originally called Wormslow after the region in Wales where Noble’s family came from in 1737 and today it is still inhabited…and farmed…by his descendants…making it the oldest continuously owned by a family estate in the state and one of the oldest in the entire country. In 1972 his dependents donated most of the estate to the Nature Conservancy which sold it to the state…leaving about 80 acres which are owned, farmed, and occupied by the descendants.

When you enter the Historic Site…which comprises the acreage owned by the state…you proceed down a dead straight 1.5 mile long driveway named Oak Road for the 400 live oaks planted along it’s sides. Here’s a shot taken from just inside the entrance arch…the white fence you can just barely make out in the distance across the road is about 2/3 of the distance down Oak Road.

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It’s a really, really impressive driveway.

As requested by my baby sister MJ…here’s a slightly improved version of not the above shot but one taken at about the same time from the same place…I wanted to give it more of the golden hour early morning view than the one above. It’s not really better…or worse…than the originally processed shot…just a different feel. If we’re down that way earlier in the morning again before we leave I might stop by and get Neil to grab another shot for me to play with. Taking photos within an hour after sunrise or an hour before sunset is really the optimum timing…but unfortunately that requires a lot of early mornings. I actually like both of these…the overall lighting effect in the first is closer to reality but the color cast of the latter is a bit closer to reality as well…it really depends on what you like. Me…I’m a sucker for waterfalls (as you well know if you’ve been reading these missives for very long) as well as Golden Hour.

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Are either of these really close to life as actually seen by our eyes? Depends on your point of view I guess…no camera can ever really capture the dynamic range and color range that eyes do…so almost every photo really needs some post processing in order to capture either “what the photographer say with his eyes” or “ what is the photographer trying to say with this image”. From an optically perfect perspective…the second one is too warm and yellow…but is really close to what your eyes would have seen if Neil had only been there a bit earlier in the day. Sadly though…he wasn’t…so I had to assist him a bit.

At the far end of the driveway we went into the museum, watched the movie and toured the exhibits…finding that there’s a geocache station inside the Visitor Center. We had decided to give the geocaching hobby a try this summer as it entails hiking to and finding various caches spread around the country…inside each there’s a log book you sign and some small trinkets which you can take one and leave one. Some of the trinkets have stories attached to them…for instance one might be in a cache in Savannah GA with a note that says “I need to get to cache #5487a which is located near Spokane WA. So if you’re proceeding in that direction…you take it along and deposit it in another cache…even if you only moved it 100 miles. The trinket eventually gets to it’s destination and the originator gets a report back on the travels of his object. It seems like a neat hobby and involves some sleuthing as once you get in the vicinity of the GPS coordinates of a particular cache you still need to actually find it.

In this particular cache’s case…it’s what is known as a 3 stage multi-cache and it’s serial number GC2RT02…it’s rated as difficulty 2 and terrain 1.5. The cache itself is locked with a 4 number combination lock…the multi part comes about as you must proceed to 3 locations around the historic site…amazingly enough they’re all on the hike to see the various sites and artifacts…so we headed out to find the info we needed…which you then plug into a math equation on the cache web page to get the combo for the lock.

First stop was the house and fort that Noble built to overlook and guard the Jones Narrows…which was back in the day the main shipping channel into the port at the city of Savannah.

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The first piece of information we needed was the number of sally ports (i.e., musket openings) visible on the remaining walls of the ruin. You can see one of the ports on the corner piece at the far right hand side of the shot…it’s the hole about 18 inches square. The house and fort themselves were built of tabby…which is a sort of concrete made out of lime, sand, oyster shells, and water. I can’t reveal the exact number of sally ports as then you could go and plunder the cache without following the steps to all the multi stages.

Next up was the overlook at the Jones Narrows…as you can see it’s just a swamp now but the construction of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway in the 1960s and the Diamond Causeway to the south of Wormsloe after that reduced the water flow through the Narrows to almost nothing and as a result it silted up into the marsh  we see today. We did see either a white heron or great egret way out there…but even with the bird lens it would have been just a white dot.

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Next up we stopped by the Colonial Life and Living History area to check out the wattle and daub hut located there…it contained our last clue and the third one we needed was found inside the museum at the visitor center.

Here’s a shot of the hut…which as anybody can clearly see just has to be Grandmother’s House.

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Now I ask ya…how do I know it’s Grandmother’s House?

Ya sure ya don’t know?

Think hard now…but if ya give up ya can just scroll down a bit for some clues.

Why it’s got to be Grandmother’s House because it’s

Over the river.

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And through the  woods.

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Sheesh…I thought everybody knew that…

There was also the blacksmith’s shop there and Connie got a couple of shots of the equipment there.

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Then we headed back to the Visitor Center via the Pines Trail…passing this mushroom that looked amazingly like a Blueberry Muffin to us…although it would most likely kill you if you ate it like the vast majority of mushroom species will. One of the things I can guarantee I’ll never do is harvest my own fungi…it’s way too likely that you’ll kill yourself unless you’re an expert or accompanied by an expert.

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Once back at the Visitor Center…we did the math, opened the cache box…which in this case is a .50 caliber machine guy ammo box…logged ourselves in and took credit for our first cache on http://geocaching.com. I guess this means we’re not geocaching virgins anymore…and we’ll still respect ourselves in the morning.

As we departed…Neil got another shot back up Oak Road…again you can barely see the white fence in the distance…it’s the same fence as in the other photo from above but from the other end of the 1.5 mile long road which is essentially the driveway.

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Our next destination was Jones Street…which is supposed to be the “prettiest street in Savannah” filled with old colonial era homes and buildings…we didn’t actually see anything there worth stopping for so…

We headed for our last destination for the day…the Candler Oak…which is supposed to be 300 years old and be the oldest tree in the area. Connie stuffed the address of the law firm it’s in the parking lot of into our GPS…she got the address off of Trip Advisor…and it led us to this oak tree.

 

Unfortunately…this isn’t in the parking lot of a law firm so Connie googled it again and found out this is just the Candler Oak Wannabe…which proves once again that you should never, never, ever trust anything TripAdvisor tells you unless it’s been independently confirmed by an actual source that knows what they’re talking about.

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On finding out the actual correct address…we went there and got a photo of the actual Candler Oak.

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Although to tell the truth the wannabe actually looked better and more photogenic than the actual one did. We also passed by a nice little park and Connie hopped out and got a couple shots of it and the nearby colonial…or maybe Antebellum era…buildings.

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With that our day of Fun Stuff© was done so we headed home for lunch and some odds and ends we needed to get done.

On to interesting things found on the net.

Go go gadget…go!

InspectorGadget

Fark the police.

FarkThePolice

Bum…badabum…bum…bmp.

EyeOfTheTiger

My name is Bond…James Bond…and you are?

BondAndYouAre

A perfect match.

Amazing APerfectMatch

Still looking.

StillLooking

Shamelessly borrowed from randysrandom.com.

NumberBlocked

And finally…how to prank your co-workers…and probably get stabbed by them as well.

HowToGetStabbedByCoWorkers

Cyas.

Posted in RV, Travel | 2 Comments