We arrived here in Flanders NJ Saturday afternoon after an uneventful travel day. I think the adults are getting the hang of breakdown, moving, and setup as things went pretty well during the day. We stopped for lunch at a rest stop right over the border into NJ then proceeded up to the camp site. The only issue we had was that we needed to make a U-turn in order to get into the campground entrance road…the truck GPS had us make 3 rights in a row and then we got back up to the main road where it wanted us to turn left. Unfortunately there was a no left turn sign posted there so we had to regroup, turn right again, and loop through a gas station in order to get going back the way we needed to go. We had an easy dinner of leftovers after getting parked and setup then watched TV and went to bed.
Sunday we hosted some new friends…we’ll call them L&E for now. L&E are about 2 years behind Neil and Connie in the retire/fulltimer process and are seriously looking at a New Horizons 5ver about the same size as our rig. They were really happy to see a rig the size they’re looking for so they can manage expectations for storage, room and the like. You always see larger units at RV shows and a 43 footer looks considerably different inside than a 39 footer does even though it’s only 4 feet longer. Neil and Connie passed along the good and bad of a New Horizons; what went well and what didn’t during the ordering, delivery, and break-in process. L&E brought beer, steaks, and wine for dinner…they chatted and talked about RV stuff from 1PM until about 4:30. Then Neil and E fired up the grill (hey, men burn stuff…it’s what they do) and grilled up the steaks. Connie made this really scrumptious potato casserole (how can you go wrong with potatoes, bacon, cream and cheese) and they ate and continued discussions RV related and otherwise. Topping off they dinner with some Boston Creme Pie from WalMart they talked some more and L&E left about 8PM. They invited Neil and Connie to get in touch with them on the way south after their visit to Cape Cod and Maine and promised to get in touch as they have more questions. They were also really happy to meet me and Kara although we were banished to the bedroom for the duration of the visit…but I say we are innocent and were banished without doing anything wrong. That’s what happens when you ain’t people though. Pooter.
Today Neil and Connie drove over to the Revolutionary War winter encampment at Morristown, NJ. The Continental Army stayed here the winter of 1779-1780; the year after they wintered at Valley Forge. Turns out that the winter at Morristown was actually much worse weather wise but fewer soldiers died during the winter since they didn’t have the disease breakout like they did the previous winter at Valley Forge. They visited the Ford Mansion which was used by General Washington as his headquarters during the winter. The owner of the house and her 4 children lived in 2 rooms of the house while the remaining 9 were rented out to General Washington and his staff. Overall this encampment is much less famous than Valley Forge, it’s a lot smaller, and there has been much less renovation and restoration to period condition than Valley Forge. Still; there are a lot of things that are very similar. Valley Forge was chosen because it was 2 days march outside of Philadelphia and guarded by mountains so the Continental Army could keep tabs on the British Army. Similarly, Morristown was chosen because it is 2 days march from New York, guarded by the Watchung Mountains, and General Washington could keep tabs on the British in New York. There are watchtowers on the mountains to the south that were garrisoned and provided the ability to monitor things going on in New York.
That’s about it for today. Tomorrow the adults are going kayaking and Wednesday they’re going down to see Thomas Edison’s laboratory.
Here are a couple of pictures of the Long Mansion and the huts occupied by the Pennsylvania Brigade during the winter.