Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Connecticut Shoreline

It is Wednesday, September 21st and we have stopped for the night near Florence, SC, in a campground called Florence RV Park.  It is very nice, good price and all pull thrus.  Van drove 9 hours yesterday and it was a monster of a drive.  Today, was much better.  He drove about 7 hours and the traffic and roads were pretty good.  I will tell you that beginning in Virginia, the interstate system is 100 times better than up north.  Monet  was even able to lay on floor and sleep some because it was not so bumpy.  Clothes didn't even fall down in the closet!

Last night we stopped at a Cracker Barrell in Dumfries, Virginia.  It was our first Cracker Barrell and a terrific stop.

We didn't have a chance to post our last stop along the Connecticut coastline before we left.  We stayed in East Lyme, CT at Aces High RV Park and it is a terrific place.  We shot out in the car from there and went to Groton where the USS Nautilis is.  What an afternoon that was.  Then we went to Mystic, Noank and New London.  The next morning we got up and headed to Gillette Castle near East Haddam, then Essex, Old Saybrook, Madison, and Guilford.  Mystic was definitely a beautiful stop.  We ended up eating lunch there at a quaint little restaurant downtown.

This is the USS Nautilis.  This is a must see for anyone who is in the area .  It is very  impressive, and somewhat difficult to believe, that a 160 men were crammed in this vessel long enough to go under the polar ice cap.
hiThis is the Gillette Castle, which is a State Park now.  William Gillette was an eccentric  actor who created the Sherlock Holmes character.  He played this character his entire acting life and made a small fortune doing so.  His wife died at a young age and he made her a death bed promise not to ever marry again, which he kept.  They never had children.  For many  years his home was a boat called "Aunt Polly."  One day while cruising up the Connecticut River, he saw the site that would later become his home.  He must have been in love with his boat because the house had a  lot of nautical influence. He even dedicated one bedroom to "Aunt Polly."  The home, while having a steel frame, was constructed of local stone and hand carved wood.  There were 47 doors, each  being different, each being designed by him,  and each being different.  There are too many curiousities about the house  to mention.  However, the light switches were hand carved and looked like toggle switches you might find on a train.   All of his bookshelves had boards across the books like you would find on a boat to make sure the books didn't fall off the shelf.  Ever since he was a little boy, he had a fascination with trains.  At the age of 72, he decided to built his "own" railroad.  It was 1/4 scale with 3 miles of track around his property.  He had as guests in his home many famous movie stars and a President.  The house was plain and simple but grand at the same time.
This is called the Wedding Cake House .  I forgot what little town this was in...sorry.
God willing, we will be home tomorrow night.  I'm ready!

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