This is primarily a travel blog in which I write about traveling in our motorhome. Our travels have

Nacogdoches, TX, United States
I began this blog as a vehicle for reporting on a 47-day trip made by my wife and me in our motorhome down to the Yucatan Peninsula and back. I continued writing about our post-Yucatan travels and gradually began including non-travel related topics. I often rant about things that piss me off, such as gun violence, fracking, healthcare, education, and anything else that pushes my button. I have a photography gallery on my Smugmug site (

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Covered Bridge Hunting

Last evening Carol Ann and I were out walking around the RV Park and saw some Amish kids selling quarts of freshly picked strawberries.  The oldest, 14 year old Elmer, was carrying the box of strawberries and had his 4 younger sisters with him.  He was wearing the traditional Amish straw hat, white shirt, black trousers, and heavy black brogan shoes.  Both the shirt and trousers were handmade and the shirt even looked like the material was homespun.  He wore glasses and a retainer so apparently they do take advantage of modern optometrists and orthodontists.  All of his sisters were barefoot and dressed alike, long homemade dresses but not all the same color.  I believe they were in different shades of light green and gray.  Very cute kids.

We had no money with us but wanted to buy some strawberries.  They were only $2 a quart (that’s right – QUART – not pint) as opposed to $3.50 to $4.50 a quart in the markets and roadside stands.  Elmer’s sisters went home and he walked back to our motorhome with us to get some cash.  We asked if he would like to see the inside of the motorhome and he was quite eager to do so.  We gave him a $5 bill (2 quarts of strawberries were $4) and he asked if we wanted change.  Carol Ann told him to keep the $1 as a tip for walking back to our RV with the strawberries.

Carol Ann gave Elmer a tour of the motorhome and he played with She Kitty (the other 2 aren’t very social and were in hiding) a while.  Elmer seemed small for his age but he has just completed the 8th grade.  I asked him what he planned to do now that he was finished with his education (remember the Amish only get 8 years of schooling).  He smiled and said, “Work.”  Elmer seemed to be in no hurry to leave but it was getting dark and we didn’t want him to get into any trouble with his parents so Carol Ann suggested it was time for him to get going.

This morning we went out looking for covered bridges.  There are at least 29 in Lancaster County but we only found two of them.  With over 2,700 miles of roads in this county (mostly rural) it would be extremely easy to get lost and not find our way back to the RV Park without a GPS.  We did find a small farmers’ market where we purchased some tomatoes, cherries, shortcake (for the strawberries), snicker doodle cookies, whoopie pies, and some homemade frozen lasagna.  If we don’t gain a lot of weight on this trip it will be a miracle!

Aabout 1:30PM we gave up searching for the bridges and stopped for lunch at the Town Hall Restaurant in Blue Ball.  It’s in the same building as the volunteer fire department.  It was a small place frequented mainly by locals and was just basic good food.  After lunch we took the “long way” back to the RV Park, winding our way up and down the hills with the windows down and taking our time at about 30 mph.  This is really beautiful country and the farms so well cared for.  They are very neat and clean with the lawns and fields looking manicured.

Tomorrow we are driving back to Harrisburg (about 60 miles) to purchase an E-Z Pass Toll Tag (transponder).  There will be a lot of toll roads from this point onward in our trip and the transponder, good in all the states we will drive through, will save us time and money.  We won’t have to go through the tollbooths and we will get a significant discount on the tolls.  We only pay $10 for the transponder and deposit $100 in an account, which will be debited automatically.  We can check the balance online and add to it with a credit card as necessary. 

By the way.  The strawberries last night were exceptional!  They were small (no slicing necessary) and very tasty.  We ate one whole quart before bedtime.  The other quart is for tonight.

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