Week of May 15 – The Journey North and Prep for Departure, T-minus 7 days and counting…..
Time to rally around the new plan! Luckily, we did get to see Colin before we left. We met for lunch outside and he filled us in on his clinicals for the fall and spring, all very exciting for him and us as his fall one is in Short Pump! And it looks like his Spring one will be in CA in San Diego! Yup – not too far from Steve’s family!
The new plan has us leaving Wednesday, May 18 to head North, taking the Northwest route to avoid the usual crazy spots – DC, Baltimore, NYC, etc. We’ll stay overnight in a town called Clinton, NJ.
Then Thursday, up to the Tappan Zee Bridge (which is now the Governor Mario Cuomo Bridge), through Danbury CT, Hartford, CT, Worcester MA, Portsmouth NH and on to Bath, Maine. We’ll get there a day early and spend the day Friday orienting ourselves on the grocery stores, laundromat, dump, etc. All those places we’ll want to know where they are so we can maximize our time when we come to the mainland each week.
Wednesday, May 18th – Leaving a little later than planned. As we headed slightly NW up towards Front Royal / Strasburg area to pick up Rte 81. We traveled the Blue Ridge Turnpike, yes turnpike not the Parkway. It was a beautiful ride and we decided to make a brief stop before we got on Rte. 81 as the rest of the day would be spent on the highway.
We stopped at Rappahannock Cellars, in Huntly, VA. A winery and a distillery and an event space! We enjoyed some snacks we brought and actually relaxed for a bit.
Also saw a hot air balloon. Took me 6 pictures to actually get one where you could see it – kept getting the trees!
We arrived about 7 at the hotel and had checked out a few restaurants on line. Found one and made a reservation but forgot to check their closing time! Kind of silly they would let you make a reservation at 7:45 if they closed at 8 right? When we got there, they said as long as we ordered by 8 we’re good to go.
Ordered small Caesar salad, mussels, oysters and tuna tartare. All was delicious – I was scarfing up the mussels as the liquid they were in was fabulous!!! (that’s my food word). Room was great and we slept very well.
Thursday May 19th – On the road again. Got an earlier start today which was good. Thought we had stayed about half way, but turns out it wasn’t quite halfway, plus we ran into construction around Hartford, so we took a different route and drove by where we used to work for Northeast Utilities in Berlin, CT. A little bit of a memory lane drive. Then we ran into some congestion/volume issues around Merrimac, Lowell and Lawrence when we were on 495. Just too many cars trying to get on the highway and it was only 3:30! Then we had some rain, needed to get some gas etc. More rain etc. as we entered Maine – couldn’t see the Lobster Tank (an oil tank on the side of the road just after the Maine/NH bridge that has a big red lobster painted on it), so I took a photo of our exit off the Maine Turnpike.
Arrived at the hotel around 5:30 – phew, little bit of a long day, but it’s done! The trip odometer says 800!
Tomorrow will be an easy day, explore and orientation. During our conversation earlier with Cyndy about trying to get some of our stuff to a person heading out tomorrow, who is scoping out the roof replacement on the main house, we all agreed it would be best if we did a COVID test tomorrow to ensure that we’re negative for the ride out on Saturday. Makes sense, but we were a little nervous as Steve was not yet back to his usual happy-go-lucky self. I still had no symptoms. We picked up a couple of tests for tomorrow. Couple of beers to celebrate we are here!!!
Tonight, we decided to grab some take out from Best Thai 2 in Bath. We’ve eaten at Best Thai in Boothbay and its good. No one else was in the restaurant so we decided to just eat there. I had Evil Tofu and Steve had Red Curry with Tofu and wide rice noodles instead of rice. Yummy! While we were waiting, I went next door to Old Bones Tattoo as guess who is looking for a tattoo before this trip is over???? Turns out they weren’t open. A little bit of TV and we were off to sleep. Hotel (Marriott Residence Inn Bath / Brunswick) was a great room. Full fridge with icemaker, little LR area and our bedroom and bathroom had a door to separate. Really nice!!
PS – Shout out to Cathy Martin (Steve’s cousin) today is her birthday. I had made here a birthday gift but had to send it to her because we didn’t see them cause of the COVID thing. But her husband Mike sent a photo of her in the birthday present.
Friday, May 20 – Alright so today is explore, grocery shop and meet Diane and Dave (my sister and her husband) for dinner at Bath Brewing Company. Right across the street is a Shaw’s. Before we head out shopping, Steve thought we should do our Covid tests. Might make a difference on what food we need to get. Steve did his first…. Drum roll please. Yippee! He’s negative and me too.
Now we can continue with our plan to go shopping. We’ll be sharing our meals with Cyndy. Earlier, she and I chatted about what each of us would bring. So off we went to grocery shop and brought our big canvas bag. We needed to get food for about 4-5 dinners plus breakfast and lunches. We were very impressed with the selection of food available, but there is the challenge of figuring out what’s where when you’re in a new-to-you grocery store! Steve got the app for the Shaw’s Loyalty Program since this will likely be our main stop for groceries. Wow! All of our purchase fit in the one bag we brought (which was pretty big). Then we stopped at Rocky’s ACE Hardware as we needed to get some RV TP for the bathrooms on the island. They have an account there so we just charge it to them and Cyndy gets an email! Back to the room to put away our food and got ready for dinner. Plan is to meet Diane and Dave around 6 at Bath Brewing since we’ll be up and out early. Supposed to meet at the dock in Popham Beach at 0730.
In the car leaving the hotel, we got a call from Cyndy. Weather delay, not heading out tomorrow! Oh no! May move to Sunday or Monday! Another flexible opportunity, what else can you do right? But we decided to meet Cyndy for breakfast tomorrow at Winnegance Restaurant & Bakery. We actually had lunch there last August when we came up for our “interview.” Well, we’ll hear what the new plan is then, maybe! So we had a great dinner and listened to some good music at the brewery. It was great to see both of them again having just seen them a couple of weeks ago at James’ (their sons) wedding. I usually only see them a couple of times a year. Diane and I had the Quinoa Bowl – I added the tofu, she went solo. Yummy!! Just finished those leftovers as I’m typing this too.
Saturday, May 21 – So we met Cyndy this morning around 10. Steve and I shared the lobster omelet (yes we’re in Maine). She had the seafood medley omelet. But first I had to get the blueberry granola scone. It was so yummy and I ate it so fast I forgot to take a pic!
We met Mark, a friend of Cyndy’s that works at the local ReStore. Then we met Michelle and Bob, also friends of Cyndy’s. Nice people that live locally and also in Florida.
By the end of breakfast though, we learned we’re not going out tomorrow, but Monday morning! We are so anxious to get started on our adventure, but each day we are still learning about the area.
Today we opted to head towards Brunswick (south on Rte 1) to see what else is nearby. Stopped in at GW (Goodwill) there and bought a couple of wine glasses, a flannel shirt for Steve and some muck boots for me! Crazy cool waterproof lined boots, should be good for climbing out of dingy into cold water with stuff and they were my size!!
Then down to Bath to walk around, listen to a little band, met Irene in the Made in Maine store, Reny’s for warm socks and water shoes for Steve. We then met Amanda Director of Main Street Bath. We talked about captains to help, she shared her contact information and I said I would share with Cyndy and be back in touch. I realized a little later I had left my water bottle somewhere. I retraced my steps and though it might be Reny’s. I called and I was right. This time though I decided to walk down and pick it up. Turned out it was only 2 miles. I passed the time by chatting with my Mom (Anne) who lives outside of Boston and will be 95 in the fall. An amazing person! As I was talking to her, I came to this plaque in the side walk on the corner of Front and Centre Streets. Rather interesting I thought as my maiden name is Thompson. How ‘bout that!
We decided to have pizza for dinner tonight. There are 3 local pizza places and we selected Bruno’s Wood Fired Pizza on Front Street. It was hoppin’! We took a seat at the bar and ordered a couple of local draft beers and some pizza. Yes, mine was cauliflower crust, with pear, fig drizzle spinach and just a tiny bit of cheese!