Thursday, August 30, 2007


On Monday afternoon we took the RV to the dealer to get a repair, rented a car, took the truck to get a repair, and took off for "up North" to get the satellite internet reprogrammed. We drove, and drove, and drove, more than 550 miles in less than 24 hours, and did get the satellite dish reprogrammed. When we got back on Tuesday, it was too late to pick up the truck, so we went out to the RV dealer and slept in our RV in the dealer parking lot. Right by the railroad track. Fun.

Wednesday morning we left the RV dealer and went to pick up the truck, then turned in the car and went back to the dealer to pick up the RV. On the way back to the park, we noticed the truck wasn't acting right, so we dropped the RV off at the state park where our preferred spot was occupied, so we had to take another spot and took the truck back to the shop. They checked it over and decided they needed to create the same circumstances as when we noticed the problem, so they wanted to ride in the truck when it was pulling the RV. So back to pick up the RV and back to the truck shop. By then whatever had been messing up was now working and all seemed fine, so we went back to the state park. By then, the spot we like was open, so we were able to switch our site back to that spot. What a bunch of back and forth stuff!

But back to the title of this blog. On Tuesday evening as we were coming back into town, we saw a beautiful rainbow across the valley on the hilltop ending right on the steeple of the chapel at the college where Ernie and I used to work. I immediately recalled the following hymn verse as I thought of the saying that a treasure is located where the rainbow ends.

God's Word a treasure is to me,
Through sorrows night my sun shall be,
The shield of faith in battle.
The Father's hand hath written there
My title as His child and heir,
"The kingdom's thine forever."
That promise faileth never.

How Blest Are They Who Hear God's Word - J.N. Brun, 1745-1816
Hymn 586, verse 2, Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary (ELH)

God's Word. Much more precious than any treasure at the end of the rainbow!

Monday, August 27, 2007


From MindShare as quoted in the June 2007 edition of Family Circle magazine:

The following are items that teens ages 13 to 17 would want if stranded on a desert island:

1. Cell phone
2. iPod
3. Food
4. Computer
5. PlayStation Portable
6. Book
7. Radio
8. CD
9. Laptop computer
10. MOM!!!!

Yay! Moms might be number 10, but at least we made the list!


As of this afternoon, we will be homeless for a day or two. We are taking the RV in to get a couple of repairs done, the truck is going in for a new turbo or whatever, and we will be homeless. We have rented a car and plan to head up north to the place where we bought the satellite dish for internet access to get it reprogrammed. We are actually going up there on faith, as we've not been able to get in touch with the guy who did the actual installation. Either he is really busy, or he doesn't want to deal with us, we don't know which. We will stay in a motel somewhere near the dealer and hope they will see us tomorrow morning. It's not like we haven't tried, as I think we've left 5 or 6 messages on their phone. So wish us luck!

One of the repairs to the RV is to have them peel back the covering on the underside and go in and tighten some of the bolts on the frame that must have worked loose. Do you think the past two summers of driving on two of the world's worst roads have anything to do with that? Last year it was the Alaskan Highway and this year it was the drive along the east shore of Nova Scotia that took a toll on the RV. The kitchen floor squeaks when we walk across it and it has become very irritating. It will be nice to have that repaired.

And the truck has lost power when pulling from a dead stop, so we've had to be very careful to not stop at a rest stop on a hill because we haven't had enough power to take off again. And heading out west to the mountains this fall will surely call for stops along the road for picture opportunities, so that has to be repaired. Thank goodness that both of these vehicles are under warranty!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


The last week has been a long, tiring week, covering many, many miles, and like Dorothy and Toto, it's good to be home. We actually arrived home on Monday afternoon and were able to get our same spot at the campground. I must say that the weather has not been very welcoming with the rain and clouds being the norm since we got here.

Here is a quick run down of our trip back to Minnesota from Boston, MA. We left a week ago today and drove through Massachusetts and part of New York. This a part of the country that we hadn't driven through before, and it was beautiful. The hills of western Massachusetts and eastern New York were a surprise to me. I didn't realize it would be so lovely. On Thursday we finished up New York, drove through the western corner of Pennsylvania, and half way across Ohio. Again, it was not what I had expected as thousands of acres of vineyards lined the highway.

Friday was a long day. We finished Ohio,, drove across Indiana and Illinois and into Wisconsin before we stopped and camped by Stoughton. We also had made another stop along the way, in Huntly, Illinois, where we picked up Ernie's latest EBay purchase. An RV washer/dryer. It was taken out of a motorhome after only a couple of uses because the people decided they needed the closet space more than they needed a washing machine. (I actually think the same, but he decided differently!) He did get it for an excellent price, and all the original labels are still in place on the machine.

Saturday we drove to Eau Claire where hubby's family was having a reunion. Kari and Mike and three of their kids came, bringing with them two of our other grandsons. We had a good time visiting with relatives from all over, Alaska included. It rained all day, and we were very thankful for Roy's huge garage that easily held all the relatives. The next morning, still in the rain, we headed to our son's home and a 24 hour visit with him, his wife and two sons. And their new puppy! It was while we were there that we saw the awful news about the flooding in southeastern Minnesota and the deaths from this weather system.

We got to our regular camp spot in the late afternoon on Monday, and since then have seen some kids and grandkids, and my mom and sister. We have talked with the rest and hope to see them all soon. Now Ernie is running around town checking on banking, truck repair, insurance questions, and setting up appointments for various things.

Me? I'm sitting at Dunn Bros coffee shop and enjoying being in one spot for awhile. And again I say, it's good to be home. Oh, I meant to tell you that the tolls on the turnpikes totaled $100. Honestly. It was $100 for our truck and 35 foot 5th wheel RV.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Yesterday was the highlight, for me, of our stay in Boston. We went to the JFK Library located on the campus of U Mass. What a thrill to revisit events that I remember! I didn't know who John Kennedy was until the presidential campaign of 1960 when I was in high school. But I remember that well. We saw pictures, posters, films, and much memorabilia from that campaign. I remember the slogans "K...E...double N...E...D...Y spells Kennedy" and "Back Jack" and others also. I remember the old fashioned way of posting each state, the pictures of the candidates, and the hand counted number of votes below each one.

I remember his beautiful wife, and the splash she made in Washington with her eloquent speech, her society dinners, and her designer gowns.

I remember the anxious days of the Cuban missile crisis, the worried looks on the faces of the President and his brother, the Attorney General. Even their posture gives away the stress they were under. Ernie was a young troop, just in the Air Force, and he remembers watching the bombers take off with loaded weapons on them.

And I remember his interest in, and his work in the area of mental health.

I remember his Inaugural Address.
I, of course, remember his untimely death.
This water color picture of the White House in our country's early days was painted for President Kennedy by the First Lady. I think it is so beautiful.


The main fact I wanted to tell you about the Constitution was that during the past 209 years that she has been on active duty, only 300 men have perished in the battles.......many, many less than have died in the 7 years of the Iraq war.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


Now I really find this hard to believe, but it is true. The Constitution was commissioned and named by GEORGE WASHINGTON! This is one old ship!

We took a trolley trip around the city today and this was my favorite stop. The Constitution is a very beautiful ship, and still very strong, sturdy, and sea worthy, too. They take her out in the harbor 6 to 8 times a year. Of course it has been repaired several times, but when you think that this ship is almost 210 years old, it is in remarkable shape. It is still on active duty.

Just some colorful flags by the Constitution museum. Tomorrow we plan to venture further along the red line, all the way to the JFK Library, and on our way back we'll probably stop at Harvard Square.


We did a trolley tour of the city today, and this is one of the places we drove by, and I naturally thought of the two of you! Miss you!


We arrived in Boston on Friday afternoon, and made plans to find the MBTA (no longer the MTA of Kingston Trio fame.....I guess that dates me!) and start exploring the city. Saturday morning we headed down the road about 5 miles, parked in the parking ramp, and found the red line train and were at Boston Commons in no time at all. From there we went on the Freedom Trail, a three mile walk that passes by sixteen historical sites in the city. It's quite easy to follow the trail, as there is a line on/in the sidewalk that takes you the whole way.
One of my favorite stops was at the Old North Church where Paul Revere began his famous midnight ride. It was fun to see the windows where the "one if by land and two if by sea" lanterns were hung.
The church is quite beautiful, with white enclosed boxes for each family to sit in. The reason for the enclosed boxes? It was impossible to heat a big building like a church, so the boxes provided some blockage of the drafts, and it was possible for the people to bring in a heated brick or stones to set in the enclosed booth to give off a little heat to make themselves a bit more comfortable.
This is taken from a bad angle so it's hard to read, but it is the tombstone on Paul Revere's grave. The burial grounds contained many graves of well known patriots, John Hancock and Samuel Adams among them.

This is the Bunker Hill Memorial on top of Breed's Hill, with a statue of Col. Prescott in front of it.
From here we walked down to the piers and found the small passenger ferry that takes you across the harbor for $1.75. That saved us from walking about 2 miles, and from the long wharf where we unloaded we were not too far from the Commons where we would again catch the red line back to our parked car. And unlike Charlie, although our tickets were called "Charlie Tickets," we were able to return and are not "riding forever 'neath the streets of Boston."

Tuesday, August 07, 2007


After 5 tries, I finally got these two pictures to load. For some reason, blogger didn't like the splashes or something because they refused to load. Personally, I love the splashes!



These pictures were taken in Acadia National Park, on the Loop road on Mt. Desert Island, and on Cadillac Mountain.

We climbed around on the rocks for quite awhile, trying to find the best angle to take that prize winning photo. The batteries in both of our cameras died.......only I had a spare set along with me!
The views were absolutely awesome. I could have spent many more hours on top of Cadillac Mountain shooting pictures. This is the highest spot on the Atlantic seaboard, and it is the first location in our country to receive the first light of dawn. Wouldn't it be fun to be atop this spot when the sun comes up?

There are a large number of islands along the coastline, adding to the beauty of the area.

The only bad part of the day was the crowds. Why, when I want to be alone and commune with nature, does half the population of the state decide to do the same? And then they got in the way of my photos, too!

Sunday, August 05, 2007


Those of you that know me well know that I have often talked about what an adventure it would be to hike the almost 2,200 mile Appalachian Trail from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Mt. Katahdin, Maine. Well, we all know that will happen only in my dreams, but yesterday I did set foot on the Trail so I can say I have walked ON it, right? We were camped at Shadow of Katahdin Campground in Medway, and we went on a day trip to Baxter State park. What a gem that place is! It's like our Minnesota BWCA, not improved at all, but kept in pristine condition so the generations can enjoy it in it's natural state. The park is huge, with only dirt roads and it is only open to tent camping in selected spots.
We started our adventure by having an early lunch in Millinocket at The Appalachian Trail Cafe. We heard the owner talking with some other customers about her interrupted thru hike because of a broken leg, so when she came by our table to ask if our lunch was okay (the French onion soup I had was absolutely wonderful!) Ernie asked her to sit down and tell us about her adventure. She did, and we asked many questions and listened intently as she answered them and described her adventure which took place over a couple of years because of the broken leg. Then I asked if they had kept an online journal at Trail Journals, and she said they had. She gave me their trail names, Ole Man and Navigator, and said I should look them up and read the journals. I did, and have started reading the first one. She seemed like a very nice woman and we totally enjoyed our visit with her. We asked how they came to own the cafe, she said that they had loved the trail, and loved the hikers, so when they summited Katahdin to complete their thru hike, they decided to stick around this area instead of going back to Florida where they were from. So they bought this cafe and a hiker hostel that were for sale, and since April this year have been living and working in Millinocket. This will be their first winter here! This is one of the better portions of the park road. The trees are very thick, so close together that I cannot believe that a moose could get through them. But they do!Here I am, hiking the Appalachian Trail!

And here is some of the scenery we saw along the trail. Actually, it was probably only 150 feet off the road, but it was along the trail. So my dream is fulfilled. I hiked THE TRAIL!


Those of you who are old like me, or had old parents like me that played popular music for you, will remember the song that was popular in 1965, King of the Road by Roger Miller. In that song is the line, "destination Bangor, Maine" which Ernie first heard when he and his friend Don were on their way to Bangor, Maine, to Dow AFB, to find housing before I, and the babe in my belly, moved out there. That babe was Kari and the picture below is of the house we lived in when she was born and until she was six months old. We lived in the upstairs apartment and another Air
Force family lived in the downstairs. At that time there was a small porch or deck off the upstairs on the back of the house. That is gone, but the house looks better today than it did 40 years ago! It has new gray siding and the lawn and driveway are in much better shape. When Kari was about 6 months old we moved into base housing, and our oldest son, Kevin, was born while we lived there. We also drove through that area today, but did not stick around long enough to locate the building we lived in as the whole area is pretty much a slum now. The town has grown tremendously, and the base is closed down except for a National Guard Unit. And we saw absolutely nothing that we recognized as we drove around.


I heard that you were sick again, Anna. That's too bad. I hope when your mom took you to the doctor that they found some medicine that would make you better. The place where we camped last night had pet bunnies and they ran around all over the campgrounds. This morning when I opened my door, there they were! So I took a picture of them for you. Hope you feel better real soon!

Friday, August 03, 2007


About noon today we crossed out of New Brunswick into Maine. We spent 6 weeks traveling in Canada's Maritime Provinces and paying up to $4.30 for a gallon of gas. Oh, they advertise it as $1.15 a litre but it really means "gottcha!" The $2.85 we paid this afternoon seemed like a steal. We also will not miss paying the 15% tax on everything, clothing and food included. But we will miss the friendly people and the incredible scenery.

So as a final tribute to Canada, for dinner tonight we had: cod purchased from a fisherman in Cow Head, New Foundland, romaine lettuce and green peppers from a farm stand in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, and tomatoes, cukes, and potatoes from a farm stand in New Brunswick.

As we were driving this afternoon we watched the clouds roll in and the temperature drop from 91 to 65 in just a short time. The wind blew and it rained a bit, but then the sun came out and the temps went right back up. After we got settled into this campground, more clouds darkened the sky, and soon that sky opened up and dumped. We are parked right below a small hill and there were little rivers rushing down the red dirt hillside, creating a dirty looking lake right outside our RV. This time the lightning flashed and the thunder crashed, and the wind blew the green leaves off the trees and unto the side of the RV. It rained quite hard for a good 45 minutes, then let up. But it's raining again now, and I believe we are in for an all night soaker. We may be more of a houseboat than an RV by morning.

We have a wireless connection here, so I have been checking out all the details on the bridge collapse in Minneapolis. That is what I really missed while we were in Canada, timely news from the US, and especially from Minnesota. I was excited to see familiar newscasters on the network news shows, and I'm now watching FOX News.

Tomorrow we plan to go to Baxter State Park and Mt. Kahtadin, the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail. I'll never be able to hike the trail, but I can see the mountain at the end of the trail, at least. Then I can pretend I hiked all two thousand and something miles of the trail! We plan to spend sometime here in the Northern East Coast states before heading home to Minnesota in September.

Thursday, August 02, 2007


It was a sad day today in Nova Scotia. The friends we have been traveling with since June received some bad news today. Dick's mother passed away suddenly yesterday morning, so they had to quickly change plans and start home early this morning. WE will miss them so much. It's been a real blast to be with them every day after only seeing them twice in the last 30 years! We hope to meet up with them again in the fall. Please pray for their safe travel to Michigan.


Hi sweetie! I miss you too. We are going to be home pretty soon. I'll take a picture of grandpa for you. Tell everyone hi. I love you so much! Grandma

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


These are some photos from day three at Peggy's Cove. Why one posted twice is beyond me!


We stopped at the world famous Peggy's Cove on three different days, and found the conditions there different each time. The first time was at sunset, and it turned out to be the only time it was worthwhile to take pictures of the lighthouse. The other two times it was so foggy that you couldn't see the ocean, and only could glimpse the lighthouse in shadow form. However, the third time we stopped was Sunday afternoon when it was quite foggy, but as we drove up the sun came out and I was able to take some pictures of the quaint town of 40 inhabitants. Forty inhabitants and 500 tourists. Sad. I wouldn't want all those people climbing on the rocks in my yard or parking in my driveway, or trampling the flowers in my flower beds. Fortunately it seems that the residents go about their business and leave the few little shops and restaurants to deal with the tourists. It was an absolutely beautiful little village where I would have liked to have spent more time, only without all the tourists!


Yesterday afternoon we went for a drive and found that this is a very productive farming area. There were farm markets along the roadside in many spots, so we decided to stop at one. I bought the largest head of romaine that I have ever seen! The green peppers were the size of large grapefruit, and the yellow beans were fresh and crisp. I had to take a picture of my purchase to share with you all! The other photo was taken on an overlook, in the heavy fog, but still showing the beautiful patchwork of the farm fields below.