Old Holbrook

A long day of leisurely travel down quiet country roads passing through forests and charming Vermont hamlets. Rivers, lakes, mountains and green, green, green. The highlight of the day was the drive itself,

The rain had cleared leaving the air at Emerald Lake clean and clear with the post rainstorm scent of pine and raw earth. We closed shop and I tried a few more trouble shooting ideas on the slide out without any luck. Reached under and cranked it in manually once again. Awkward angle and not much leverage but worked it in and was good to go.

This one's for you, Tom

Our first stop was only a few miles down the road at the Wilson House where we attended the meeting the other night. This is the country hotel where Bill Wilson, the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous was born back in 1895. We watched a short video then took a tour of the house. It was restored over time starting in the sixties. Even some of the old furniture was redone. Now it is an archive of AA history and the upstairs rooms are available to visitors who want to stay and reflect and for holding retreats. People come from around the world to see the house. There was a men’s retreat going on this weekend and the participants were loading up plates of home cooking in the restored hotel kitchen.

After a quick stop at the general Store, we drove own the old highway to the Dorset Cemetery where we visited the graves of Bill Wilson and his wife, Lois. PJ had an AA token that she added to a little collection that was resting on top of the headstone. One token was from far away France. We said a prayer and then continued on down the road. I don’t know if one lane country roads are the only option or if the Google maps GPS just figures that’s where we want to go, but it was a back road day averaging probably 40 mph.

A few hours of tooling around the forest past covered bridges and ski resorts brought us to the Massachusetts border. We paused a few times, once at touristy cheese farm and shortly after crossing the border we pulled off at a farmer’s stand where we stocked up on fresh local produce. Straight from the ground to our RV.

We emerged from the rural countryside and passed through a rough looking area of old rusted industrial plants. Some appeared functional while others looked long abandoned. Traffic thickened up and we worked our way through town and back into more bucolic settings. The trees filled in and it was back to empty country lanes.

Before too long, we arrived at Old Holbrook camping. This has been a picnic ground since 1919 with the camping area being introduced in the sixties. Sweet, laid back vibe. Families and oldies. Some other campers had arrived just before us in a ~28 foot class C. The 100 or so year old guy driving was going to back it in when he did the classic hit the accelerator instead of the brake and had people diving out of the way as the rig lunged backwards towards them. The oldster shakily got out using the vehicle to hold himself up and someone else took the wheel to back it into the site. With excitement over, we checked in and Linda walked us over to a site near the back of the property and we got hooked up.

The slide still wouldn't go out, so I ratcheted it half way then tried again and it sprung to life and pushed out. Hmm… we’ll see what it does when it's time to go. The weather is considerably warmer here at 88 degrees. We put the dogs in with the AC on and went down to the beach and hopped in for a swim. Manchaug Pond is about four times bigger than Emerald Lake. Kind of challenges my conception of pond vs. lake.

We climbed around on the old school wooden swim platform, did a few cannonballs and floated around in the cool, clean water. Beautiful spot with a nicely landscaped beach area. The beach has a nice sand bottom with no surprises for your feet. The only surprise is the schools of fish that came to check us out. We tarried as the sun dropped low in the sky watching children fishing from the docks, boats of every kind plying the water and oldies playing cornhole up on the shore. Hey, I didn't name the game.

We returned home where I cooked up a pair of my famous omelets that we enjoyed for dinner while reading the paper and relaxing after a long, interesting day.