PENNSYLVANIA, summer 2017

 

1 Campsite at KOAWelcome to our campsite for the summer. Our ‘Tiny House’ is working out quite nicely for us. We are located just an hour or so from NY or NJ and the majestic Delaware River, depending on which direction we head.  We are in the heart of the northern Pocono Mountains covered with lush green hardwood trees.  It is nearly like a rain forest as we have had an abundance of rain here. The bad news is that also brings high humidity but the good news is there are many rivers and streams that have created an abundance of waterfalls that we have endeavored to find. Rather than labeling them for you, here is just a smattering of the ones we have found.

There is something mesmerizing about the power, beauty and majesty of each and every waterfall. Half of the adventure has been in finding them – some on 4-wheeler roads but worth the effort.

We jumped right into our new position here at the KOA, learning the reservations system (of course Jim mastered that quickly), the camp store and the snack bar (where Berne has mastered making a mean ‘Perky Pizza’).  It wasn’t long until the 4th of July arrived so we dressed for the occasion and joined in the festivities that included a bike and golf cart parade.

Each week-end has a theme to it. Since we are in the office, I haven’t gotten pictures to share but one w/e was “chocolate” so they had free chocolate on the hay ride, a chocolate slip & slide with squirt guns that were used to spray chocolate pudding on the participants. Another was ‘bubbles’ w/e where a bubble tank was set up that created mounds of bubbles like snow. Water w/e had a hayride with squirt guns (both on the wagon and off). It was a war of water weapons. So this is very much a family camp with events for everyone who is young at heart to enjoy.

 

On 12 Dorflinger crystalour days off, we are out exploring. One of the places we enjoyed was the DORFLINGER GLASS MUSEUM.  Beginning in the 1860’s a factory was located in a small hamlet along the shores of the Lackawaxen River.  This small hamlet became the home of the Dorflinger Glass Works where exquisite pieces of manually produced cut glass were made. Dorflinger  Glass had patented a unique cutting wheel that enabled them to cut very intricate patterns into the glass. These pieces were created for a half century for use in the homes of many of the rich and famous, including occupants of the White House from Abraham Lincoln to Woodrow Wilson.

We heard the BROTHERS FOUR would be in our area so we arranged to get the night off so we could attend. They were so popular in the early 60’s and 2 of the 4 are from that time period!!!   As you can see from the picture, it was an outdoor amphitheater and we were allowed to bring in a picnic lunch and a bottle of wine to enjoy during the concert. From the first song to the last, we remembered the words and they invited us to sing along. What a blast!

Now for a little history. . . . The first commercial steam locomotive (left picture) in the US was in Honesdale, our little town here. It was imported from England in 1828 for transportation of anthracite, a hard clean-burning coal. From here we went to Scranton to the STEAMTOWN NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE where we learned the history of steam locomotives in our country. The one on the right is the oldest restored locomotive but they have many locomotives, passenger cars, freight cars and even a steam powered snow thrower from yester year.

While there, we boarded the train and went for a short ride while they gave us more about the history of the railroad in our country. After each day, the train goes to the turntable and back to the roundhouse for daily maintenance. It was a hard life for those working on the rails.

Another day we ventured over to Morristown NJ where George Washington used the Ford mansion as his headquarters during the winter of 1777. Rather than a history lesson, we will share some of the trivia we learned here.

24 Morristown Geo WashingtonThis is a famous picture of George Washington. We have often heard he had dentures made of wood. In fact, they were made from ivory. So why do we not see his teeth in pictures? When the dentures were made, they were wired into the jaw bone to keep them secure. It was a pain he endured during his lifetime and if you look closely, you can see the tight jaw in his expression. We can be ever so thankful we live in a day and time when modern dentistry can do so many amazing things!

26 Morristown musket - made of 3 parts ... lock, stock, barrel

 

 

This is a musket used in the revolutionary war. It is comprised of three pieces that were manufactured by different craftsmen; one would make the lock (firing mechanism), one would make the stock out of wood (the part that would rest against your shoulder) and the barrel would be made by yet another craftsman. In order to assemble the fire arm, you needed all three pieces – thus the expression “lock, stock & barrel”.25 Morristown - ropes helped them to sleep tight

 

Most people slept on the floor with straw ticking. If you were fortunate enough to own a bed, there were ropes in place of our box springs. It would be drawn tight to keep the mattress firm – thus the expression “Sleep tight!”.

 

Now for some more current history . . . we found we were only an hours drive to Bethel where Woodstock happened in 1969. A trip over there was quite interesting. There is now a museum that exhibits the changes that occurred in the 60’s from the “Ozzie & Harriet” philosophy of home and family to the cold war, to the shooting of President Kennedy and Dr Martin Luther King to the Viet Nam conflict. So much happened in that relatively short period of time. By the end of the decade, young people were both protesting the war and civil unrest as well as seeking an existence where they could live without rules or controlling power. The event was initially planned for a few thousand but quickly grew to over 400,000. As the word spread, young people came from across the country for a week-end of music and freedom.  the exhibit is well done and gave us a better understanding of what happened that summer.

 

14 Brothers four concert
14 Brothers four concert
14 Brothers four concert
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