A vagabond’s lament – meet cool folks, hello, goodbye.

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It’s happened to all of us – you meet someone and you click right away. Conversation flows easily, common interests are discovered, and laughter ensues. When you are a fulltime RVer on the move, connections like this are bittersweet because you know they are fleeting.

To Jennifer Meyer and Kate Hill- I regret we had such a short time together in Sturbridge, Mass., but I think of you every time I open my fridge!

These two gals from from Oregon have been traveling across the U.S. like us (www.oneyearontheroad.com), and when we met they had just been to Cape Cod. By luck, they got there in time to witness the cranberry harvest. Jennifer was trying to get some photos when a truck driver stopped and offered her a higher vantage point by standing on his cranberry-laden truck.

She got her shot, then he offered, “You want some cranberries?” and scooped a bunch into a plastic bag. Apparently a believer in pass-it-on, Jennifer offered us some of the cranberries that “fell off the truck.”IMG_9285

I made this tart cranberry applesauce, with apple cider from Vermont, apples from Maine, cranberries from Massachusettes, and a little brown sugar.

Take photos at your own risk.

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by Mark Bergmann
Scenic pullovers are not always readily available traveling in Vermont. Sometimes you have to slam on the brakes (which does not translate to a quick stop when you are driving a house on wheels) and take your chances with a berm stop. We have often wished for a construction worker’s brightly colored vest.

This was one such stop. IMG_8933When we glimpsed this stunning view, I careened off to the side to park, then crossed four lanes of 55 mile an hour traffic, then walked back a quarter-mile while dodging rocks thrown up by passing semi trucks.IMG_8943

There are many beautiful trees in Ohio but I noticed a difference in Vermont and New Hampshire. Instead of just one or two types of trees in a stand, it’s common here to see five or six different varieties, each with its own signature hue. I often felt like I was  driving down a tunnel of fire with red, orange, burgundy, gold, pink and yellow blasting me from all sides for miles and miles.

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Sorry, just could not leave these extra photos out.IMG_8807

Whoopee for Whoopie

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By Saimi Bergmann

The Whoopie Pie, like many sweet treats*, was born in the 1920s. Where? Well, that’s up for debate. Pennsylvania and Maine both claim to have invented the Whoopee Pie — which isn’t a pie at all, but more a cake shaped like a cookie.

While in Freeport, Maine, we stopped at a cheerful bakery called Wicked Whoopies. After a lot of browsing and debate, we got a chocolate with mint filling, a chocolate with peanut butter filling, and the oatmeal with traditional cream filling. The chocolate “pies” were wicked good, but the oatmeal was our runaway favorite.

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The gal running the shop was friendly and despite being busy, offered help with photographs. “You gotta get this shot,” she said, carefully picking up a large Whoopie Pie and placing it in my hands. “Now hold it up.”

When you hear someone say a food was “as big as my face,” you suspect a bit of hyperbole. In this case, I’d be understating.

Turns out, these oversized Wicked Whoopies are a popular birthday cake.

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*Do you know of any other sweets from the 20s?

Attention wordsmiths and other curious types.

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By Saimi Rote Bergmann

Back before cars, when horsepower meant horse-powered, wagon teams sported harnesses decorated with bells. American wagoners took pride in their expensive brass bells – some even filed the bells a bit to give theirs a unique sound.
If a teamster’s wagon got mired in mud or broke down and he needed help from another wagoner, it was customary for him to relinquish his bells to the rescuer. Thus, it was a point of honor (and an excuse for a little bragging) to arrive at a destination with all your bells.
Hence the phrase, “I’ll be there with bells on.”

(Learned this nugget of cool info at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont. You can see an example of the wagon bells on the harness at the far right side of the photo.)

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Cherry Garcia, Chubby Hubby, and … Broccoli Cheddar Chunk?

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It probably comes as no surprise to learn that Ben & Jerry’s in Waterbury, Vermont, is a fun and funny place to visit. Our $4 tour included a stop at the “Flavor Lab” where we were asked to serve as taste testers for a new flavor.

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Thankfully, our real sample was Steven Colbert’s “Americone Dream.”

After our tour, we stopped at the “Flavor Graveyard” to check out flavors no longer on the market. I could understand Sugar Plum and Aloha Macadamia, but why oh why would they kill off anything chocolate?

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Signs you haven’t lost your sense of humor, America.

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By Saimi Bergmann

You gotta love a congregation with a sense of humor.

IMG_9030We saw Moose Crossing signs all over New England, but only one of these….

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The sign (below) on a covered bridge at an outdoor museum probably was meant to be taken seriously, but… IMG_8609

A Road Less Traveled…..

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By Mark Bergmann

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I –

I took the one less traveled by – Robert Frost

We walked to the Bass Harbor Lighthouse in Maine and noticed roughly 75% of the visitors missed this view of the lighthouse.IMG_8980
A paved walkway to the lighthouse provided an uninspiring view, but an unmarked path on the opposite side led down to the rocky coastline of the Atlantic. If those visitors would have talked to a local, they would have been told to make sure to go left at the light house. A campground host told us about the path.