Sunday, September 28, 2014

From Maine to Massachusetts

Thursday

Wow is it foggy out, I can not even see the row of buildings down below us.  It is a lot warmer out and I guess that is causing the fog.  It is to be sunny later so time will tell.  We have just two days left here in Island Falls and then we begin our trip home to WNY.

No big plans for today.  Bonnie wanted to drive back up to Houlton to browse through the Salvation Army store.  So we drove the 30 miles up the interstate, still hoping to see a moose.  While she shopped for a couple hours I drove around town and looked for a Verizon store.  I wanted to get a look at the new iPhones.  I even went to Walmart.  Then I call the US Cellular store.  She told me the closest Verizon Store was an hour away.  About that time Bonnie called and I headed over to pick her up.  She had two other stores to visit.  One was closed and she was not in the other very long.

We drove back Route 2, still no Moose.  Then we explored some really rough roads close to the resort but still no Moose.  So back to the condo.  I checked the air pressure in the tires and the one is 2 lbs low again.  I will fill it tomorrow I guess.  I lubed the steps and when I got the can of spray lube out there was a dead mouse in the trap.  So one must have gotten in somewhere.  At least I hope it is only one.  Each day when we get back the big window has a lot of flies on it.  Today there were close to 100.  Its much warmer today than it has been.  Bonnie suggested I open the casement window and remove the screen.  I did that and a lot went out side.  The rest I took care of with the fly swatter.  Twenty minutes later 10 or more are back.  Bonnie calls them cluster flies, says they come out from around the windows.

And so another day draws to a close.

Another nice sunset


Friday

We got up and were in no big hurry this morning.  Looks like it will be a beautiful day.  I did spend time on line with Verizon Wireless and finally ordered an iPhone 6 Plus.  Estimated ship date is October 31st.  So looks like there is a month long wait for the iPhones now.

On the way into town we pulled over and took a picture of the lake below the resort.

Upper Mattawamkeag Lake
We had skipped lunch and so decided to have a meal down in town at the Rive Cafe on the Falls.
Out front they even had an old English Phone Booth.

Ring Ring
The is a nice view of the river off the deck out back.

Mattawamkeag River
The food was very good and the people there were very helpful.  Bonnie was looking at a calendar and it showed another covered Bridge.  The owner looked it up on google and we decided to head up to Littleton, Me and look for it.  The bridge is called the Watson Bridge and google maps found it and led us right to it.

Rather new built in 1911
Closed to traffic but in good shape

A few through a crack

Sun coming through a knot hole

This is a truss bridge
 Here is a quick view looking up the river.

Lots of color
Bonnie wanted some close ups of the Buffalo

Like he was posing
 There is even lots of color along the interstate

Along I-95
Then we decided to pull down into the small picnic area the resort has down by the lake.  Bonnie wanted to see if she could spot any loons.  We were losing the light but did spot a couple, but they were not calling to each other.

Bonnie on Loon watch

Nice colors

A Loon A Loon

Now maybe a Moose
The mosquitos chased me into the car and Bonnie followed close behind.  Back at the condo we carried out a few things to the coach and I killed flies and then vacuumed them up.

Well we leave in the morning check out is 10am and we will be southbound shortly after that this time for Littleton, MA

Saturday

Yesterday we visited the covered bridge near Littleton, ME and tonight we are in the Boston Minuteman CG in Littleton, MA.

We pulled out of the time share lot at 10:15 this morning.  I unhooked the power, and had to add air to the one tire again.  This is the tire I had to keep an eye on and add air in the spring, but its been good all summer.  So not sure what it is, but the braided valve stem extenders are probably a good place to start.  I started out driving but Bonnie took over behind the wheel at the first rest stop.  I snapped this picture with my phone as we headed down the road.

Bonnie at the Wheel
She drove until we got back down to the Exit 43 Quick stop.  This is the same place we fueled up at on the way north.  I filled up the fuel tank and Bonnie went in to get some lunch for us.  I checked over the rigs and ran the car through its setup procedure.  This keeps the transmission lubed up and charges the battery a little.  Once we were done eating I took on the driving duties and a couple hours later we had passed through New Hampshire and we were now in Massachusetts.  We soon exited and pulled into the Campground.  Its very nice here and we were lead to our site.  The sites seem crowded but ours is a good size pull through.  We chatted a bit with our neighbors who are from Colorado and have been here a week.

We finished setting up and Bonnie started a load of laundry.  Once it went to the dry cycle we ran into town to CVS to pick up a RX and a few groceries.  Then back to the rig to relax.  I got the free WiFi set up and it seems to be working pretty good.  We watched a bit of TV and now its after 11 and time to get some rest.

Sunday

Up early this morning and ran the heat pump to take off the chill.  Then I turned on the TV to watch a little of the final round of the Ryder Cup.  Our view out the front window is the kids playground and they were out there by 7:45 playing on the swings.  Its nice and sunny out and not sure what we will do today.



We decided to go and visit the Lowell National Historic Park.  I called and we made reservations on the 2:00pm boat tour.  We left here at noon and were parked and in the visitor center in about 30 minutes.  We paid for our tickets (no senior pass here) and watched the 20 minute film about Lowell.

Lowell was a textile town and grew rapidly.  It was named after Francis Cabot Lowell.  He went to England learned and memorized the technology and came back and built a mill.  At its peak there were at least 60,000 looms in operation in the city in several huge mills.  This was in the 1800's so a series of canals were built to harness the Pawtucket Rivers power.  The river drops 32 feet in this area and provided a tremendous amount of power to run the mills.  The size of the buildings is impressive.  We did get to see some looms operating at the Boott Cotton Mills Museum part of the NPS also.  The mills are all closed not but a lot of the buildings are now being converted to apartments and luxury lofts.  We saw so much and there is still so much to see if we come back this way.  Here are some pictures.

Market Mills houses the NPS visitor center


All Aboard

No time to visit this museum

Monument to the med that built the canals by hand

On display where the tour started 
Gas for 327 cash only

Clara explained the canals
 The first canal was actually built by farmers to float logs past the falls and rapids.

Restored trolly our ride to the boats.
The trolleys, boats and locks are operated by volunteers!  We got on the boat at the Swamp Gate and went out to the Pawtuckett River Dam.  The dam is a historic wooden flashboard and pin system and has been in use for over 130 years. Check it out I have never seen this before.  http://www.savingplaces.org/treasures/pawtucket-dam#.VCiUob4mfbw

Above the Swamp Locks

Below the Swamp Locks

Swamp Lock

This old mill has been converted to Artist Lofts

In the Francis Lock
We locked up in the Francis lock to the level of the Pawtucket river

The river flooded to the 1852 mark, then in 1934 flooded up to the top of the wall

Old RR bridge on the canal
This is the top of the Flashboard Dam
The dam bends over if the water or ice pressure is too much and releases water.  Once the water goes down they repair it.

After the boat tour we stayed on the trolley and it took us out to the Boott Cotton Mill, also part of the NPS.  This mill had 5 floors with 200 looms on each floor.  The first floor is still operational and volunteers run the looms.  They only run 10 looms at a time.  What a noise, they issue ear plugs.  Can you imagine what all 200 would sound like and 1000 in the whole building.



The company clock, workers lived by this time

200 looms

One of the looms with auto spindle changer
After the mill we went next door to the boarding house where the woman that came to the city to work lived, ate, and slept.

The boarding house

Two tables in the space for one

Two girls to a bed Four to a room.
Close living quarters and not very good sanitary facilities.  Disease was easily spread.

We took the trolley back to the visitors center and headed back to the coach.  Its been a great week and we have seen a lot.  Tomorrow we hit the road for NY.  The next post may be from home.  We have one more stop in Verona.

Thanks For Checking In!

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” 
― Albert Einstein