The Turtle Takes Off on August 6th, 2011

The Turtle, my 1981 Toyota Sunrader Mini Motorhome, will be taking me on an almost 8,000 mile journey to Glacier National Park and beyond. Wish us luck and tailwinds!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Good Samaritans on Turtle Trip #4, August 28 to Sept. 26, 2014

 Linda Pharis and me, Roanoke, VA
 Linda and John Pharis, Roanoke, VA near Tinker Creek
 Pat Dougherty and Max, Goode, Virginia
 Pat Dougherty, Goode, Virginia near Bedford
 Carol and Oscar Phillips with Amos, Roanoke, VA
 Amy Messegee, Purcellville, VA
 Me, Amy and Sabrina, Three generations
 Amy Messegee and her daughter, Sabrina Vanderbilt in Purcellville, VA
 Amy and Tom Messegee, Purcellville, VA
 Amy and her Aunt Peggy
 Newell Eaton and Alli Middleton, Albany, NY
 Martha Fricke and Ruth Gingerich, Charlevoix, MI and Hartville, Ohio
Jeff DeBell and Mary Fitzgerald, Roanoke, VA

I am not sure I would have made it without my friends and family on this trip from my home in Spring Creek, NC (near Hot Springs and Asheville, ) through Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York (The Hudson River Valley, Albany,  Adirondacks,Lake George, Lake Champlain, Lake Ontario, Lake Erie and Niagara Falls) Ohio and West Virginia. But I am sure I had a hell of a lot more fun by including them in my itinerary! Thanks to all of you. You are priceless.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

OHIO..AS far as the Eye can see-O

OH Ohio, You bring us back and now we can see as far as times forgotten. To the tops of tall corn rows or along  banks edged with golden-rods. The river of the pioneers.  Lined with captain's houses overlooking beauty while powering progress with black chunks mined in earnest. Steubenville. Home of Dean Martin. Who flew with the flamingos to fame. Amish entrepreneurs. Flea Markets. Slinky, satin and pearl-ropes at the indoor hall of flame. Seduction. Plain and Simple.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

One Amazing Turtle


The Turtle moves me. What can I say? To so many places I would never be able to see without her. To a strength I never knew I had. Her heart is small but powerful. A mere 4 cylinder putt putt engine pulling such a top-heavy load. The Turtle should be showing up at antique car shows.Instead she is chugging up mountains like The Little Engine That Could. Both of us chanting, I think we can. I think we can. And we have. Across the United States and parts of Canada and in every direction for the past 4 years. Anything more we are blessed with at this point in our journey, would be like double frosting on a triple layered wedding cake, and I would proudly place The Turtle on top of that confection in a heartbeat.
How can one leave home and never have left home at the same time? That is what it feels like when I am camping in The Turtle. I am the driver, but many times it feels like I have been transported to my camping spot by something else. I wake up in the morning to see a new scene as if I were on a train in the sleeping car or on a cruise ship sailing between exotic islands while I slumbered.
 At other times, I am working hard to keep things ship- shape in, out, around and on top of The Turtle.
I am the chief cook and bottle washer. The mechanic. The map reader. I keep the fires burning and the tanks full. I cross my fingers a lot and my toes and whatever else needs crossing to keep her on the road.
She has taught me to stay in the moment, to let go at every turn, and to trust myself.

I thought I paid for The Turtle, but it turns out she was a gift from the Universe. I thought I was the sole owner, but I am sure my friends and family own a share. I know this because they treat us as if we were their own with loving care when we arrive out of nowhere at their doorstep.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Blue Clad Beings Invade Niagara!(Seeing the World Through Blue Colored Lenses)

 Selfies Abound On Board Maid of the Mist.
 Maori Prince is all Eyes for The Maid
 Is It a Bluebird Wonders Blue Band Invaders?
 And To Your Left, Blue Buddies, We Have the Niagara Blue Glacier
 Blue Bumble Bee Visits Niagara Falls While the Canadian Ship Thumbs its Nose
Our Blue Band Trudges to the Top to End it All..... The End

Something about the blue plastic raincoats turned us tourists into a rather comical photo op. I tried shooting through the protective covering of heavenly blue. The image with the caption, Is it a bluebird?, is an example. The Canadian ship was called, Hornblower. Not very poetic or romantic. They wore red plastic raincoats. The Canadian border is somewhere in the middle of the Niagara River. But who cares about borders anyway! Unless they are blue borders.


Niagara!! Unbridled falls, unbound, veiled, harnessed, free floating, dammed up. Once they cut off all of its energy and power to study the effects of erosion. Its rawness could be controlled. I like the illusion better. Untouched like the bride before the wedding. Not made by the hands of man. Maid of the Mist. Marvelous Wonder of the World. I did not wonder. I was in awe.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Boogieing on Bulwagga Bay, NY, Hanging out on the Hudson, Gorgeous George, and Laconic Lake Locust

 Lake George, NY  Near Hague
 Lake Champlain, NY , Port Henry at Bulwagga Bay Campground
 Bulwagga Bay, Port Henry, New York
 Olana, Home of Frederic Edwin Church, Founder, Hudson River Art School
Lake Locust State Park, Pennsylvania

Mid September is a quiet summer's end, an interlude, a floating and sinking feeling. What would I give to hang on to its softness? Would I delete my winters, my springs, the coming fall? It's the changing of the guard, that's all.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Tinting, Tenting Tonight in the Kaaterskills

 Hudson River Valley at Stony Point, NY in a purple haze.
 Tenting tonight, tinting tonight during the War of Independence..the blue of red,white and blue
 North Lake Campground, Catskill Mountains, New York above the Hudson, green camping

A play on words, playing around, no color TV, high contrast to the mundane campsite.Tampering with nature which is after all what the Hudson River Art School did, I came to this realization after seeing some of the actual scenes in the Catskills.  I like the original name better: Kaaterskill,