Travelogue: Fourth Day - Glenburnie to New England
Rosie, Beeotch, Dancing Queen, Peeps
Our time at Glenburnie was a very pleasant interlude between full days of driving to get to our next destination, but time waits on no one and we had places to be. The fresh mountain air woke us early on this next traveling day. We said our farewells to our gracious hostess and hit the road.
As we drove along the road down the eastern side of Lake George toward White Hall, we were treated to the sight of high tech communications meeting Green Acres when we spotted a farmer talking on his cell phone while driving his tractor. The sight kept us laughing till we arrived at a MacDonalds for a quick breakfast. In White Hall, which is at the southern end of Lake Champlain, we paused to take note of an interesting historical fact. The United States Navy was born right there on Lake Champlain - a couple of hundred miles from the ocean!
Across the Champlain Canal (complete with locks) at White Hall and we were in Ethan Allen's Green Mountain State (also known as Vermont). It is amazing that there are different qualities of green in the different landscapes we were driving through. A number of these different greens appeared as we drove through this Green Mountain country and one of the most striking examples were the bright greens of the ski runs cutting through the rich, deep green, forest-clad mountains around Killington - one of the premier ski areas in the entire country. The feel of the whole area must be completely different when snow beckons the winter sportsmen.
Today's drive was not a long, boring, straight run. We built a number of stops into today's leg of our journey. The first was at a Scottish import shop appropriately named Scotland by the Yard. Right next to the gravel parking lot in front of the store, a small enclosure contained a number of goats. Talk about creating a mood! Inside the shop, we found an amazing array of tartan ties, gorgeous hand knit sweaters, beautiful pre-made kilted skirts, delicious Scottish shortbread, clan crest jewelry, and of course hilarious greeting cards and bumper stickers. Remember this one? "If it's nae Scottish, it's Crap!" Since one of us is Scottish by derivation, we just had to buy itů Another of us could not resist adding one of the lovely cardigans and a kilted skirt to her work wardrobe - special ordering the skirt no less! We had so much fun looking around and modeling the Tam-o-shanters for each other, we risked getting tossed out of the store. Good thing we bought stuff!
A few miles down the road brought us to oddly named, but spectacularly beautiful Queechee Gorge. We pulled over at a roadside lay-by and walked across the bridge to experience the beauty of the gorge. On the other side of the bridge, we found the expected little tourist trap gift shop with the requisite tchotchkes, but we found another treat. Vermont is known for its luscious cheeses. We loaded up! Properly stored, it would keep till we got home. We took a short walk along a trail at the top of the gorge to see the Falls and promised ourselves a return trip to more fully explore the beautiful Queechee area.
Our third planned stop was just on the Vermont - New Hampshire border at King Arthur Flour in Norwich, Vermont. This shop is a baking enthusiast's dream. It was chock-full of different specialty flours, gleaming pans and utensils, jams, jellies, cookbooks, and - best of all - samples of incredible bread as well as a small pastry shop right there in the store. Since one of us is very much an enthusiastic bread baker, and another of us aspires to be, and all of us LOVE bread, making a small detour here was a must. The aroma of freshly baked bread had our mouths watering and we made a beeline for the samples. Having tasted these, we could not resist stocking up on necessities for our baking ambitions (although everything offered in the store is available to order through their website). It was hard to tear ourselves away, but our destination in New Hampshire called, so we stuffed our purchases into the trunk and continued on to Concord.
With three fun stops along the way, the day's drive was not too draining. We arrived at our hotel ready to check in, but still with enough energy left to seek out a delicious dinner. Since one of us had once resided in Concord, we relied on knowledge of quality local dining. And - since we were less than 100 miles from the ocean - we felt safe opting for fresh seafood. In a BIG way! The Weathervane lived up to expectations and all were satisfied. Tummies filled and energy still not flagging, we returned to our hotel to check out the pool. Sequestered from the evening swarm of mosquitos, a lovely indoor swimmin' hole and deliciously warm and relaxing hot tub were the perfect way to end the day.
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