On our way south again, we decided to really change things up and hit some of the big metropolitan areas on the East Coast. And it was none too soon. Not that we didn’t absolutely love Vermont, just that the campgrounds and dump stations were closing up behind us almost literally as we went down the road! We had to get south!
Our first stops out of Vermont took us to the greater Boston area. We parked in a church lot near the home of our friends Donovan and Kat. Next we moved closer to the city to my dear friend Sue’s house. Our kids played (in between illnesses) while we caught up and we managed to visit the city a few times. We were struck by the road signs warning that we were entering “Thickly Settled” areas! One thing is for sure, we were not in Vermont any more! While in Boston we visited the Science Center, Paul Revere’s house, Beacon Hill, Walden Pond, Concord, Minuteman National Historical Park, Harvard, Cambridge, Wood’s Hole and Cape Cod. In our history lessons, we had just finished up Mr. Revere and I, an Account in the Career of Paul Revere as told by his Horse. It was perfect timing to actually see his house and stand where he rode.
Next we had to hit New York City and were able to park with an old friend in the Central Valley of the Hudson River. Thankfully my cousin in NYC agreed to meet us and help us navigate! It truly was Country Mouse meets City Mouse! We saw the Empire State Building, Times Square (Toys R Us), the National September 11 Memorial, the Fraunces Tavern (the same tavern Phoebe the Spy was raised in, another history lesson), rode the Staten Island Ferry and walked through Chinatown and took 9 different trains! After all that, the kids’ favorite part was the tub of frogs in one fish market in Chinatown. It was very interesting to say the least.
Last but not least was Washington DC. For the second time we were able to park in a church parking lot in Fairfax for 5 nights. It gets interesting boondocking like this! We become very aware of our water and electric usage! While in the DC area we toured the monuments and museums on the National Mall and Memorial Parks and the kids earned their Junior Park Ranger badges for the monuments, which is no small feat. We were there on Veteran’s Day so there was a lot going on. And not to be missed is the cell phone lot and park at the Ron Reagan airport! It is right at the end of the runway. Additionally we had the opportunity to participate, with members’ of our friends’ church, in Our Daily Bread, Complete the Circle FOODraiser. 8,300 pounds of food were collected that day to help feed those struggling in the Fairfax area.
It is so nice to have time to spend with family and friends. That has been one benefit to being on the road…we spend more time with more people and have an opportunity to become familiar with their routine and life. It also feels good that the kids now have a visual of many iconic American landmarks. When we read a story about immigrants coming to Ellis Island or about Paul Revere rousing the Patriots, we can think of exactly where it happened and what it looks like now. Many thanks to our friends Donovan and Kat, Sue and Todd, Ellen and Ted, Tom and Kris, Kathy and Lee and Dan and Laura who helped us navigate these areas and find a spot for our rig!!