Tuesday, May 6, 2014

A Fun Day

Sometime this summer, Sandra and I are taking a short trip to Pennsylvania to see a production in a theater we really like visiting in Lancaster.  It's a long, 9 hour drive to Lancaster from here, and for the first time Sandra will have to drive the whole distance.

So, we've planned a series of day adventures between now and the trip to give our sit-down places a chance to get prepared for the trip.  Other muscles also are getting some practice in long rides, too.

Tuesday was one of those planned days.

I had fun.  Sandra was glued to the steering wheel.  I dug out my Garmin and my computer software Delorme's Street Atlas and planned a trip to Berlin, New Hampshire.  Now don't misunderstand me; I've been to Berlin so many times in my life that I probably could have guided her blind folded.  There is a super restaurant called Northland Restaurant and Dairy Bar just outside Berlin that both of us absolutely love to visit.  The food is simply wonderful and, for the most part, prepared like home made.

We set the restaurant as our destination point.  To put the mapping software and the Garmin to work, we designed a trip that had many local state roads.  Naturally, it wasn't the most direct route.  Both the software and hardware guided us directly to the restaurant with no difficulty.

We designed a much more direct route home and, although I could do it without the use of the Garmin (My computer battery expired so the software was done) but guiding Sandra using it was certainly keeping me from getting bored.

WCSH -TV6 and probably many other places are telling us about some group's challenge to find the worst roads in Maine.  There's a prize for the eventual winner of just under $300, the estimated cost of repairing a car that is damaged by the condition, mostly potholes, of Maine's roads.  Naturally, although I don't have a smart phone camera nor did I take my Instamatic so I couldn't take pictures with which I could enter the contest, I did keep my eyes open for some of the really bad roads.

I didn't find any.  At least 90% of the roads we had chosen were in remarkably good shape; not perfect, perhaps, but very good.  I'm not trying to say all Maine's roads are great; they are not.  It's just that the ones we were lucky enough to travel this day were just fine.

Until we headed home.  As we crossed into Maine just west of Fryeburg on Route 302, we found out why that contest was being held.  At the border, there was a sign, "Welcome to Maine, where life is like it should be."  Well, U.S. Route 302 west of Fryeburg is about as far from a "Welcome" as a welcome should be.  If I had been from away, I might have thought twice about continuing in this state.  We left 302 in Fryeburg and found the roadway, Route 113, to be in very good condition.  The rest of the roads getting home were enjoyable.

Our sit-downs survived the trip easily and gave us confidence the trip to Pennsylvania will be O.K., even though long.  I can't speak for Sandra, but her reactions certainly hinted I could make good guesses.  I, on the other hand, must admit to some very stiff joints, especially my legs and knees.  I'll have to work on those.

Timing on that is pretty good.  We are now in the exercise phase of strengthening the body in my weekly Balance Workshop at the Southern Maine Agency on Aging.

We'll try another, perhaps a little longer daytrip sometime in the near future.

By the way, Mount Washington with its snow capped peaks was just simply beautiful in this early May.  We were blessed with no showers, just sunshine as we drove past the mountain.


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