Wed 11/13. Woke to sunny, cold near 25. Wind came up late morning. Departed about 11:30. Drove west with northerly crosswind. Not too bad crossing Bay Bridge. Then turned south with northwest wind. It seemed to help with gas mileage. But, crossing one more bridge in Virginia was a bit hairy because it was a single lane with no median OR shoulder. Opposite direction traffic, including one semi, was inches away. We crossed the Potomac river. Got to new park about 3:00. Unloaded, sunset was clearly seen at our site at 4:45. Had multiple martinis and watched some local Richmond, VA news while the temperature plummeted. Ate homemade enchiladas. Slept well. Water froze in hose or at faucet; had to go on water pump.
Thurs 11/14. Cold morning. After water in faucet thawed, worker drove by and saw water spraying the side of our coach. The plastic y valve had cracked. Put a new one on and he connected some kind of electric wire wrapped around the pipe. Nice and warm afternoon. Bought some wood. Walked the dogs. I waited on tech to come by to help get wifi and satellite dish working, and Dina ran to store in Bowling Green. Got back a little after sunset and tech never made it, so built a fire and played CDs. Grilled chicken with cauliflower and salad.
Fri 11/15. Left dogs here and drove south to suburb of Richmond. Found small DDD diner and had late lunch. Took some corn pancake black bean appetizer and part of Cuban sandwich to go. The smoked roast beef sub disappeared. On way back, stopped for groceries. Made it back at sunset. Everything covered in prep for rain later, so stayed inside and watched network tv shows.
Sat 11/16. Light rain overnight. Warmer. Stayed cloudy, then misty foggy late afternoon. Watched games starting at noon. Our game came on after another finished overtime. Got blown out anyway. Other games were better. Dina grilled baked potato, pork chops and pear. We ate a feast. Then watched the end of late games in bed.
Sun 11/17. Drove with dogs north 45 minutes to Fredericksburg. Parked downtown and walked up and down 3 or 4 blocks next to Rappahannock River. Some shops closed on Sunday. Had drinks at two Irish pubs. Saw where to park for train station and got info for trip into DC. Drove back to site before sunset. Cloudy with rain after ten. Ate fried rice and watched usual Sunday night tv inside.
Mon 11/18. Nice clear, but windy. Down day to relax and nap on hammock. Decided to stay here extra 5 days. Move on Dec. 2nd. Built campfire and watched satellite tv on outside tv only, with there was DirecTv box. Then listened to CDs and grilled hotdogs with chili and cheese and potato salad.
Tues 11/19. Beautiful weather but chilly. Ran to store for groceries while Dina wrote. Talked to neighbors Wayne and Elaine, and Pam with two labs. Walked dogs at sunset and saw deer in the soy bean field next to the park. Built campfire and grilled burgers.
Weds. 11/20. Nice day, warmer but still cold in the shade or near the Chesapeake Bay. We drove with dogs to George Washington’s birthplace and walked the grounds next to an opening to the Potomac river. Saw the rebuilt house and kitchen, along with other buildings and artifacts of the period. It was a working farm with pastures and fenced yards for birds and animals. Next, drove a few miles east to the edge of the Potomac river and the Lee plantation, preserved by a private entity. We paid at the entry and drove some of the grounds of the 1900- acre estate. Drove by the mansion but not to it and continued on to the far end. There we parked at the restored grist mill and walked the dogs along trails. Saw the beaches and cliffs at the water’s edge. A private jet or some kind of security flight was circling the River (about 5 miles across, near Chesapeake Bay) at low altitude the whole hour that we were there. While walking, we saw a pair of bald eagles moving amongst the trees and across the bay was Maryland. And driving out, we saw funny long haired cattle. Got back to site just after sunset.
Thurs 11/21. Cloudy and cool. Warmed to 50s by afternoon. Went fishing at large creek a little south of here. No luck, one non keeper. Dina wrote a little. Built fire and grilled pork ribs with potato salad and bootlegger beans.
Fri 11/22. Cloudy then sun and warm 75. Drove to Tappahannock for lunch. Stopped at Lowe’s there for supplies, then parked near town center. Lots of historic buildings renovated to become courthouses and law offices. Walked dogs to waterfront of Rappahannock River. Ate at seafood restaurant. No to- go’s. Crossed the river on the way back via different route. Dina pulled over for cop that was stopping another speeder. He came to window, asked how fast were you going? She said 63(in a 55) but thought the limit was 60. He said that’s right, you can go. Lucky! Got back to site before dark but just stayed inside with rain approaching.
Sat 11/23. Chilly but clear. Rain passed overnight. Warmed up afternoon. Dina made chili outside with campfire, while I worked on repair projects till three. Then watched games rest of day. Low tonight in twenties, so disconnected water faucet before retiring.
Sun 11/24. Colder, below freezing several hours. Wind from northwest all day. Stayed in the thirties. Drove to Spotsylvania and the Courthouse Battlefield National Preserve. Walked with dogs through a portion of the ravine located on the Landrum family farm turned historic civil war killing field. Monuments, ancient house material and rows of hand dug trenches are all that remain. We walked about a mile or more in the biting wind. Then we drove through the rest of the preserve and stopped to read some of the battle descriptions along the route. Drove through the small town called historic Court House, but didn’t find a place to stop. So, next, drove to Fredericksburg Battlefield, since it was just a few miles away. We parked at the visitor center and walked the preserved area there called Sunken Road and the Stone Wall at Marye’s Heights. It was about two and the route description stated, “…leisurely hour long walk along the sunken road…”. But it was 33 in a frosty wind; I think we did it in 45 minutes or less. Very interesting because this battle took place on one day near a large town. There were photos of scenes from the following day. Many of the buildings in the photos have been preserved at their same location. A cemetery lay at the top of the hill. My camera phone froze at this point. Dina snapped a few before we darted for the car. We had planned to go into town for a thawing refreshment, but with the temperature at 32 now at about three, we had to race back to our site and disconnect the water hose and other cold weather chores. Tonight’s low forecasted for our area was 18-20.
Mon 11/25. On water pump till late morning due to frozen obstruction in hose. Below freezing until around noon. Drove to Charlottesville to see Thomas Jefferson’s Plantation, Monticello. Dina rode shuttle to house from visitor center and took the guided tour of the house. She learned all about TJ. I walked the dogs up the trail to the house and met her. We walked some of the grounds and by the cemetery on the way back to the car. Cold, but above freezing with wind from SW. Drove into town where UVA is located and parked near downtown. Walked along pedestrian only block and saw shops and eateries. Took dogs to pet friendly place called Millers Downtown, but they don’t allow dogs inside. Too cold for outside, so put dogs in car and went back there to eat and drink. Nice bartender Jessica served us for an hour and a half or so. She said Dave Mathews worked and played there. Drove back to site before precipitation started. Got back at eight and hovered around freezing for the rest of the night.
Tues 11/26. Light rain early but above freezing. Stopped for awhile mid morning. I went to grocery store for Thanksgiving Day supplies. Got back after noon. Rained off and on rest of day. Greenberg turkey arrived. Stayed inside with wet dogs. Dina began the process of preparing turkey day feast. Had martinis, ate soup and sandwich, while music played. Walked dogs in the rain one last time, but it had warmed to the 40s.
Weds 11/27. Rained most of the night. Above freezing with light rain all day. Dina did more cooking and writing. We all stayed inside. Received delivery of dog food in the afternoon. Watched some tv after dark and ate the last of leftovers…for now!
Thurs 11/28. Game Day…oh and Thanksgiving! Clear and 22. Dina finished prepping a wonderful feast. Gathered some wet wood for all day campfire. Discovered our satellite tv won’t work, so no watching our game tonight. Ate at three; we were bloated. Went back to fire, but sleepy. At dark got really cold, so came in and watched Cowboy game. I kept up with our game on ESPN Gamecast app. At half, walked dogs then went to bed. Kept up with game, since we had free wifi, till it was over at 11:30. Very nice Thanksgiving and cherry on top was the victory!
Fri 11/29. Cold start, 24. Warmed to 40s. Drove to Colonial Beach. Parked at waterfront and walked dogs up and down sidewalk next to Potomac River. Shops were all closed except for a video gaming/horse racing casino/restaurant. It was built over the water and after entering from Virginia, one enters Maryland, where gambling is legal. We just looked around and used the facility. Then we drove back to the main route and turned north toward the Nice Bridge. Came upon box stores and strip malls and parked at a seafood restaurant and bar. Tied dogs to outdoor table and sat inside for drinks and appetizers. We got steamed crab legs and shrimp to go. Drove back to our site and arrived just after sunset. Ate and relaxed inside and Dina did some turkey leftover magic. Watched a little tv before retiring.
Sat 11/30. Cold start. Warmed some. Did chores to get ready to move. Built fire early and burned all afternoon. Dina did some writing by it while I watched football. After dark, watched from outside and grilled sweet potatoes the small ribeyes.
Sun 12/1. Awoke early for trip. Cold, 24. Drove to Fredericksburg train station. Rode to Union Station in Washington, D. C., just down the street from the U. S. Capitol. First stop was to eat at Irish pub. Had two hours for sightseeing, so walked briskly, most of the time, past the Capitol, down the Mall to the Washington Monument. Then further south to the Lincoln Memorial and back north along Constitution Ave. Past the White House and back to Union Station…whew! Took lots of pictures. Had a drink before getting to the gate for boarding. Got back to car about 4:30 and let the dogs out about 5:20. Watched football and regular Sunday evening shows. Ate leftover turkey soup and grilled cheese sandwich before walking the dogs and bed. Very tired and moving tomorrow.