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First Trip- Baltimore, 3/14-15/2009

March 16th, 2009 2 comments

Well, it has finally happened- the first trip in Scooter.

After several trips from home to Scooter (in Axis Storage on Bacton Hill Road in Frazer) loaded with preparatory items, it still required a full load of “stuff” to be ready for the trip. Much of this is material that will remain on board so a lot of this effort won’t be necessary in the future.

Rob and his girlfriend, Kris, joined me for the inaugural trip. A frustrating start in that the speedometer did not work again until we had gone 10 or so miles, almost like it had to warm up. Our plan was to go to Bar Harbor RV Park and Marina in Abingdon, MD, on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay, a little under 30 miles north of Baltimore. I had reserved a spot there (SW-5), overlooking the Bay. On arrival, we registered with Jacqui, signed the c/c slip, and proceeded to get settled. Of course, the first question was “Does the TV work?” As usual, the answer was “No”. A very nice fellow named Jim came down from the office to help…having experienced this from many RVers; he has us in business fairly quickly. The one thing I forgot to do was to ask for the password so that we might be able to use the on-site WIFI service. I am making a check-list of things to remember to bring (E-ZPass) and do (WIFI password).

In any case, we were soon on our way into Baltimore, intending to check out the Inner Harbor and maybe see a movie. All good intentions aside, being late in the afternoon and confronting a huge traffic jam on I-95, we rethought our plans. We decided to search out an Olive Garden restaurant in the area (White Marsh, MD) and then find a local movie. The new GPS (Garmin Nuvi 760, love it) found the Olive Garden but, in a comedy of errors, we could not get to it. The biggest error was passing it and expecting to approach via the next turn. Well, it turns out that we were on the outer ring road of the mall and the next turn was onto a multi-lane highway that had us way too far away to consider coming back. So we found another mall and had great burgers at a Fuddruckers- never been to one, not bad at all. Then, off to a movie… “He’s just not that into you”… a cute romantic comedy, with a predictable story line and outcome.

After the movie, it was back to Scooter and getting ready to end the day. This included figuring out how the heating system works, blowing up the mattress (we go 1st class) for Rob and Kris and finding out that we did not have a whole lot of tooth-paste between us.

After making the bunks, we all assumed sleeping positions. I tossed my fancy bed cover on the floor and, of course, in doing so covered up the only heating duct into my cabin. Yes, I awoke several times due to excessive shivering but was too lazy to get up to find out what was wrong. Now I know. (Hadn’t thought to put the heavy cover on… of course then I would have been too hot!)

We awoke in the AM at 8:00 (after all agreed to 7:00), and had breakfast at the Waffle House we had passed on the way to the RV park. As usual, Skip fell in love, this time with “Buttons” (on her badge), Pamela (properly), our most wonderful waitress. She was young (not too), cute (too), and determined to please her customers. Am considering a daily commute from Wayne for breakfast! By the way, I recommend Waffle House for its food, service and cost- it was crowded so I can’t be the only one who thinks it’s good.

On to Baltimore and the National Aquarium… did not make the anticipated early, crowd avoiding time but, because it was very overcast and drizzling, it was not a mob scene as you might expect on a weekend. The aquarium was as good as ever- they always seem to have a new and fascinating show along with the always excellent dolphin show. They have added a 4-D show, interactive (you feel motion, wind, water and things moving) show that all seemed to enjoy. Some of the younger kids were scared; the management might have warned the parents before they were seated. All in all, much fun- thanks, Kris, for the tickets!

Toad got us back to the park and we hooked her up for the trip home. Again, the speedometer had to “warm up” so I will call the dealership when I get home. We also had a problem with the overhead light on the driver’s side. We could not turn it off without shutting down all 12-volt service in the bus. Will get the answer for that as well.

Finally arrived home around 9PM, a little tired but very satisfied with a good introductory trip. Rob and Kris seemed to have a great time and I know I did.

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