Sunday, April 30, 2017

Hooray Hooray for the 12th of May!

31 May: Jessup, MD and Montgomery, TX:  Hey! Rain wasn't in the forecast, and Ron was prepared for dry, so he waited 2:00 AM to set up his tent.  Nature called a couple of times, but after the 5:00AM call, he was unable to go back to sleep, and finally arose at 6:30, slightly disoriented and hungry.  Around 8:45, he interrupted conversation with rider Dawn to ride to Weis, hoping that the intermittent electrical problem would appear so the BMW mechanic could see it; no such luck.  The mechanic discovered loose battery cables, very peculiar since Ron and Jim had checked and tightened them earlier.  Ron visited old friends Harry, John, Dale & Nick, nearby in Silver Spring.  Rain fell briefly before dark, and Ron tented in the adjacent Montgomery County park.

30 May: Departure Mount Airy, MD to Baltimore, MD  at 2:00 PM for Cynthia's flight to Texas leaving Ron without adult supervision for six days, Oh! Oh!  Ron will overnight in Jessup, MD spending the day tomorrow overseeing work on the motorcycle's electrical system.    Smooch to my beloved Smooch!  The flight was on time. TSA PreChek was worth the effort.

29 May, SnowShoe Mountain Resort West Virginia  to Mount Airy, Maryland:  Immediately, at COLD-thirty kairos time, we were dressed in gear  and bound down mountain.  After descending to Cass, WV we warmed by ten degrees.  Mother Earth is putting forth spring finery  -  fleurs are fleuring, and  Cynthia was intoxicated by the fragrance of  the lilacs (even Ron noticed the purdy stink).  We drove WV Highway 28 North to Highway 48 East over hills, dales, and alongside mountain streams.  Once we reached I-81 at Winchester, we spun off to Highway 340 north to Highway I-70 to Mount Airy, MD.   Heavy rains raised the river levels enough that rafters were out in abundance.   Jim and Joni left the mountain top an hour ahead of us, but at the junction of highway 33 (their choice) and highway 28 (Ron's GPS chosen) in Seneca Rocks, they rode by as we waited for the light.  Too much fun !!  Jim stopped at a Sheetz gas station in Petersburg, and Ron noticed a "racing stripe" of cords on Jim's rear tire.   Nothing being open Memorial Day for repairs,  Jim made the decision to wait in Petersburg with his bike while we rode on to their home to get the trailer to haul the bike back to their farm.   Joni  refused Ron's assistance driving back to retrieve Jim.   Instead, Ron went for a great walk while visiting his favorite people by phone, sister Carol and Bro Dean.  How interesting Verizon cell service is not available in most of West Virginia.  Ok.  Now you know the saga of our lives to this moment.  We are tired and going to sing ourselves a lullaby. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

28 May, Sunday:  Weather cleared early and everyone was excited to ride, except Cynthia who decided to protect her back by staying "home."

27 May- 29 May: SnowShoe Mountain Resort in West VA for hiking and biking. NO cell service! No computers!!! Rain!!!  Fog so thick it looks like snow.

School kids escaping incarceration in Harpers Ferry
26 May: Early AM departure for a gorgeous 5 hour ride to SnowShoe Mountain Resort in WVA, was accomplished and arrival by 4:00 PM was dry.  Pam, Walt, Jim, Joni arrived later with sun shining. We are on motorcycles hoping to avoid bad weather forecast for the East Coast this weekend.  We remain hopeful! Nevertheless, we have fun. Our lodging is lovely; we have a pool view, mountains off to one side of building.  Verizon has no coverage here.  We-fi is by room phone only. We will put the electronics away.  Have a blessed Memorial Day weekend.  Ron's fans arrived for a sendoff.

Back porch view from West Ridge B & B-less

Disappointed goose couldn't find correct change
25 May: Surprise! It rained all night, but morning's sunny skies brought forth opportunity to ride to breakfast instead of walking because of one hurted leg.  After SCS projects, Ron hiked working up a sweat, while Cynthia rested, iced her leg and caught up with email.  After a trip to Martin's Market in Charles Town for salads and sorbet, the rain began once again.  It is pleasant, cuddled and curled up on the sofa, listening to thunder bellowing and roaring while looking out the large glass windows at the forest green:

Harper's Ferry educational signage is excellent

John Brown holed up here, but was executed anyway

Harpers Ferry rifle manufacturing was innovative and excellent
24 May:  We enjoyed the bright blue skies above as we walked the many blocks to the Country Cafe.  After breakfast the day turned to gray with a bracing chilly wind as we headed to the canal path with legs tired from yesterday's hike.  En route, we stopped at the post office to return the Hoka hiking boots.  Ron is still amazed the Hoka on-line retail store will allow returns for a full refund for thirty days after purchase !!  The mile-plus walk to the trail uphill and down on concrete city sidewalks soon took its toll when Cynthia's IT band became quite painful after another short mile on the canal path.  We had to hobble slowly back into town so that Ron could hurriedly hoof it up to the B&B for the motorcycle to pick up Cynthia in lower town.  The poor dear had to wait right next to a tantalizing display of warm cinnamon rolls.  Ron enjoyed using Cynthia's hiking poles for added boost up the hills and was quite satisfied with his workout.  A large duck waddled into the coffee shop honking her annoyance that no one was feeding her warm cinnamon rolls either.   We immediately rode to Ruby Tuesday's to enjoy hot baked potatoes with the Garden Bar.

23 May:  After walking to the Country Store Cafe for egg white omelets we returned to the B&B for oatmeal because the restaurant didn't have any to order.  Today's hike was on the canal path in between the Shenandoah River and the old canals providing warmth from the wind with terrific views. A very large great blue heron stood sentinel on a huge boulder below the junction of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers.  Our total distance was 9 miles!!!  Our awesome friend, Jim S., drove over from Mt. Airy with Cynthia's Gerbings heated gear because she will need it Friday for the ride to SnowShoe Resort.  This much-appreciated act of kindness sent her over the moon with joy.  The three of us had a most enjoyable dinner at Ruby Tuesday's in Charles Town.

22 May:  Harper's Ferry WVA:  Surprise; restaurants are closed on Mondays.  We made hot water in the coffee pot and poured that over our rolled oats and added blueberries for a terrific tasting breakfast.  Our late morning hike proved to us that Cynthia's new hiking boots are too narrow in the toe box.  The Harpers Ferry Outfitter downtown was open with good news the Altra hiking shoe is made with wide toe box.  They fit fine and Cynthia loved them.  After riding to Charles Town and dining at Ruby Tuesdays, we returned to hike another two hours.

21 May: We surprised the Shenk's at Tidings of Peace Church AM; Harper's Ferry, WVA by evening for 4 days of hiking.

20 May:The temperatures dropped considerably making travel on the chilly side.  Plymouth Meeting departure was one PM with arrival in Bethel, PA by three PM to visit Lil Mak and Popeye, and bedtime in YORK, PA. Being hungry we tried out the Pritikin ER method at Subway:,scoop out the bread from a whole wheat sub roll, toast it and fill with veggies. Yes! It was delicious. And warm. Mmmm.  Because we were chilly with an instance of rain we didn't get to really enjoy the views of the peaceful Pennsylvania countryside replete with rambling farmhouses and iconic Stone barns. Lots of horsedrawn Amish buggies ambled down the backcountry roads.  We did enjoy visiting Lil Mak and Popeye, hikers from the AT in 2008. Ron played ping pong and worked on a jigsaw puzzle.

19 May: Ron worked on Swedish Colonial Society FGS until 3:30AM.  Cynthia arose at 6:30.  Ron didn't get enough sleep last night.  92 degrees today. After breakfast we rode the bike to the archives with Becky and Amy following to give them a tour.  They went on to see Constitution Hall while we returned to finalize our packing  for tomorrow's departure to York, PA.  Ron drove two boxes to FedEx for shipping to Texas and to Jim's. Packing is nearly complete so we walked the mall, returned to work on SCS material. Once the sun was setting we walked outdoors; a goose, gander and six goslings made an delightful picture crossing the street to the park.  Ron is very tired with drooping eyes and zzzzzzzzz! Good night!

18 May: We are off to Gloria Dei Church to give presentations to the Swedish Colonial Society on the Craig Collection (Ron) and DNA (Cynthia) followed by dinner with friends.   Our session was well received.  Dinner at Scoogi's with Becky, Amy, Kim  and Ruth was lovely.

17 May:, 82 degrees with a real feel of 93 -  Glædlig Settende Mai, the Norwegian celebration equivalent to our Fourth of July with similar heat to accompany the festivities.  Congratulations to grandson Eric upon receiving a degree in construction engineering from Texas A&M University.   Eric's dad is proudly beaming from heaven above on this day; Jim suffered a fatal heart attack three years ago while hunting with Eric and friends.  Eric valiantly tried using CPR to save his father.  Eric and Cynthia's daughter Julie in the photo:

Congratulations to grandson Eric & daughter Julia

16 May early morning: A crane boom swung past our 6th floor hotel window creating a moment of panic for the one of the female persuasion as workers were being lifted to the roof for another day of roof repair.   The warm sunshine promised a pleasant ride to the post office, but we were in for a surprise when the largest box didn't fit into the saddlebags or the top case.  Undaunted, Ron got on the bike, Cynthia handed the box to Ron to hold while she got on; Ron then passed the box to her to hold which was a bit unnerving traveling through city streets to Chestnut Hill.  The packages were successfully shipped.  We thoroughly enjoyed the day at the Lutheran Seminary and lunch at McMenamins with John P., the archivist; Jim Z. Joined us for dinner at Scoogi's.  Thanks to Janina B. For the photo:

Da happy Smooches at the awards banquet

15 May: Have a happy day! Hooray for today!  Work on the Family Group Sheet packages consumes Ron along with preparation for Thursday's presentation to the Swedish Colonial Society council on the Craig Collection.  We managed a terrific walk to the mall for lunch at Whole Foods and a walk on the side road of the hotel.  After the latest family group Sheet order (hundreds of pages) was completed we walked the 7 floors and stairs of the hotel.

14 May: Happy Mother's Day to all of the mothers in your lives.  Rain is forecast until evening but hadn't arrived by four PM allowing us to swiftly cross to the mall for our walkathon.  By the time we returned the sky was darkening with threatening clouds.  We enjoyed salmon and steamed veggies for dinner.  Sad news arrived of an MIT alum's passing last year.

Eating Pritiken
13 May: Six years and a day!  We joyfully agree we are the best thing to happen to each other. Cynthia liked one of Ron's cards that said, "I know God loves me (Ron) because God gave me you(Smooch Smooch)."  The rain prevented venturing forth until four PM; after walking 7 hotel halls and up and down the exit stairs, we braved a light mist to complete four miles by walking the mall and eat lunch at Whole Foods fresh veggie bar. See photo.  Interesting to watch so many weird people.  Ron is helping nephew Eric with his website while Cynthia is assisting DNA   participants.

12 May: Hooray for the 12th of May!!!!! This is the day!!!!! Ron turned a very young 70,  a joyful youth he remains at heart.  This is the day to celebrate six years of wedded bliss.  Ron surprised his bride with-not one-but three-bouquets and four happy, happy cards to make the girlie cry.

Happy Mrs. Beatty

11May: Surprise! Yes, we were surprised.  Unsuspecting, we met Sally B. And her son Mark at their home in Berwyn, PA for a 45 minute drive to River Wood, NJ for lunch with Rambo cousin Herb and his lovely wife Zofia who surprised us with a 70th birthday party for Ron and an anniversary party complete with balloons and cake. Yes: we ate a piece of white cake with frosting but did not take the remainder home. WooHoo!  Cynthia learned how to post photos on the IPad by emailing them to the blog.
Eternally Young At Heart

Celebrating Six Years of Joy
Celebrating "70" Young Years

Card by Sally B. Says it All!  
10 May:  Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania (click here), it is Wednesday all day, moving towards our 6th annabir-sary on Friday.  The hotel did not have oatmeal this morning and the omelets were over-oily, so Cynthia prepared some quick oats in the microwave and topped it with blueberries and raspberries.  Today's plan is big time exercise.  We opted for veggie plates for lunch at the hotel, and they did a good job for us; the vegan waitress was impressed and curious.  Tonight we Uber to Rittenhouse Square (click here) for dinner with Ron's MIT colleague Eric C., who is preparing cod for our dinner.  (Uber because Cynthia is too much over-cold to ride the motorcycle in this unusually cool PA springtime.) The dinner and view of sunset from Eric's penthouse was lovely.  The penthouse formerly belonged to Katharine Hepburn. Imagine the shock discovering a dead cell phone battery just when we tried to call a Uber to pick us up. Cynthia frantically tried downloading the Uber app to her IPad that did not have much battery life left either when Ron woke up to her need for a cord. Voila! The MAC case had a spare. We plugged the cord into the USB on the Mac allowing the IPhone to charge before ordering the Uber.

9 May: The outdoor temp was 43 BrrrrrrFreeeeezinnng degrees as we boarded the bike to ride to the Lutheran Seminary.  Despite the chill, the ride was surprisingly warm with blue skies, warm sunshine, and Cynthia's Gerbings heated outfit (that plugs into the bike's electrical system like an electric blanket).  Decades-old azaleas (click here) along our route are nearly peak brilliance and several other flowering bushes provide counterpoint.  John T. arrived to work with Ron on his Forefather data entry project (it is going well); they gave Cynthia a ride to the hair salon in Chestnut Hill; she walked the 2 miles back to the seminary and to McMenamins for lunch with the guys.  Dinner at Scoogis (click here) with Jim Z. and John P. was a treat as always.

8 May:  Recoup Recoup Recoup!  We slept!  We worked!  We walked the mall twice, Ron hit the fitness center elliptical machine for thirty minutes, then free weights, and we both did our stretches.  Cynthia turned blue while swimming in the icy hotel pool for 30 minutes.  Ron met a new best buddy at the fitness center, Ryan from Canada.

Hmm, we didn't drink enough to make the camera blurry
7 May, Sunday:  Our friend Jean C. came for lunch and spent the afternoon with us at the hotel restaurant, a very pleasant, relaxed afternoon of conversation.  We discovered just how chilly 50 degrees could be by walking to Plymouth Mall in anticipation of a long walk, but the mall offered no respite from the cold and no walk because the doors were locked - at 6:30 pm Sunday.  We returned to the fitness center at the hotel for a short run on the machines.

6 May: The e-VILe sistah Carol and triathaloner, marathoner bro Dean and his wife Janina returned home leaving us with wonderful memories. We are working furiously at our projects and fitness routines.  Cynthia's is frustrated with posting blog photos.  Blogsy is dead, so neither the iPhone nor the iPad work; the only way to post pictures to the blog (yes, this blog) is using the MacBook or similar computer.

5 May:  The weather is very chilly.  Ron received his award from The Swedish Council of America Awards Dinner this evening.  Brother Dean and wife Janina from Lewes, DE, Sistah Carol from Illinois, and MIT alum Eric Clemons from Philly arrived to attend the celebration honoring Ron for a national achievement award at the Union League downtown Philadelphia (click here).  Cynthia arranged a ride with Uber, and it was super convenient and easy to get all five of us downtown at rush hour.  The Union League is indeed a swanky place, formerly an exclusive men's club, now merely exclusive.  Let's hear it big for photos on the blog!  Wow!  Ron looks mighty fine!

Brother Dean looks too young
staged photo op

Smiley Smooch
Kim & Ron with awards.  Thanks.

4 May:  New Sweden (click here) (Philadelphia/Plymouth Meeting): We slept until 8:00.  Ron rode to the seminary to retrieve the two boxes of clothes Cynthia shipped for tomorrow night's Awards Dinner, bringing Jim Z. some Mountain Dew and Kettle Chips.  Ron and Kim-Eric had a Hefeweisen (click here) and salad at McMenamins (click here). Cynthia spent the morning exercising.  Ron is making good progress on the packages of family group sheets for the SCS.  After dinner at the hotel, we walked to, through and around the mall to get our steps.  Cynthia unpacked and pressed the dress clothes shipped from Texas two months ago.  Spring has blossomed with cherry, apple trees putting forth; the brilliant colored azalea bushes are magnificent.

3 May:  Brrrrr 60 degrees.  The ride to Philly will be cold.  Cynthia seems to be sleeping well again, two nights in a row; wonderful and Thank God !!  Jim & Joni are off to work, so Ron is commencing to figure out the route to New Sweden and our next hotel at Plymouth Meeting, God willing.  Jim recommends the Conowingo dam as awesome; nope, I like lessor road 372 to cross the Susquehanna much further north.  Packing comes next, oops, I hear Cynthia rustling around; time for breakfast first.  Packing & preparing at 9:24 after oatmeal w/ berries for breakfast. Thanks again to Jim & Joni for wonderful hospitality, friendship, and great food (in tune with our dietary restrictions).  Hey, Ron added links to several places in late April; look for (click here).

2 May:  Mount Airy, MD awakening from a deep, long sleep.  Oh, how lovely.  We are enjoying a cool, but sunny day.  After breakfast at IHop we walked 4 miles over hill and overdale returning for oatmeal lunch with black beans for dessert.   As we coasted down Jim's driveway, his resident wild goose (gander) flew alongside us within 5 feet, a spectacular viewing.  His female consort is nesting by the lake.  Among others, a red winged blackbird, a red headed woodpecker, and a female cardinal are taking turns at the bird feeder outside the kitchen window.  (Ron is partial to the little Downey woodpeckers and one of the BRIGHT yellow songbirds.  The unusual one was the ruby grosbeak (click here).)  Since Cynthia is sleeping better, Ron has completed two packages of family group sheets for the Swedish Colonial Society - only 6 more to do.  We walked off down Old West Falls Road all the way to t'other end and back, about 4 pastoral miles round trip, a nice, pleasant, pretty walk on a cool, clear day.  Jim arrived home for another nap whilst Ron was on the deck assembling the Peter Jones package.  Joni remembered to call "20 minutes out" from the end of the driveway, Jim prepared a huge pile of steamed veggies for dinner, and we all participated in an animated discussion of the political travails our press is inflicting on the unwary within the population.

1 May:  Happy May Day! May! Remember making May baskets?  We awoke to May Day in the Comfort Inn in Waynesboro, Virginia.  After breakfast we will be off to Mount Airy, MD to see Jim and Joni.  (Cynthia expects to arrive about 3:30 PM; she has yet to learn that her iPhone projections do not correlate well with actual Ron routes.)  Storms with hail and heavy wind were forecast for late afternoon, but not a raindrop fell on us.  Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland are breathtakingly beautiful on a pretty spring day.  We nearly froze riding the motorcycle on the Blue Ridge Parkway at 3,000+ feet elevation in foggy conditions; the trees are still bare of leaves at that elevation.  It was fun to clearly see a bear cub close to the road - from a distance of perhaps 30 feet.  We were puzzled by two cars in the driveway and a dark, seemingly empty, open house, but the puzzlement ended an hour later when Jim emerged from his afternoon nap.  Without a thyroid, his energy flags easily after noon, and a nap is necessary.  Joni arrived home after five, and we all repaired to rest shortly after a wonderful home made dinner of steamed veggies and grilled chicken.  Ron, on the other hand, stayed up late, late, late since Cynthia was sleeping VERY soundly.  He was able to complete the Hans Hanson preliminary package for the SCS and gathered together most of the pages needed for the Peter Jones pp by the time of Cynthia's first nocturnal powder room visit around 2 am.

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