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Kristin & Aunt Connie's Travel Page

Welcome to Kristin & Aunt Connie's Travel Page. Here is where we will be keeping a record of our travels for all of you to read In June 2009. Please feel free to leave a comment for us. We plan on starting from Indiana, PA - heading north until we run into Niagara Falls and then northeast. This is a graduation trip from my Aunt Connie and her "Great Adventure" of turning 65!!! We hope you can join us along the way.

Diary Entries

Monday, 15 June 2009

Location: USA

12:02 am - Connie

As I review Kristin's writing's I find she has missed a few days along the way. Friday night we drove very late into Bar Harbor and were planning on spending the night at a KOA just over the bridge, turned out it was across from the best Lobster Pound. Lucky for us we could not find the resonable priced sites in the park, on honor system that late. We drove on towards Bar Harbor and then the rains started coming down - so thankful did not camp out - could just imagine this old bladder of mine have to forge the run off from this storm to find the bathroom. We stayed at a rustic Best Western and got drenched getting our luggage in. The next day was worse - as we drove into Bar Harbor hit a area of the road that was flooded. This water went up under my engine and we now had squeaking belts for a day. We tried to look around the town but with so much rain and 65 it just was not too much fun, except for the Tarot reading, which I think Kristin mentioned. I do not know why I spent so much on this but was another one of those "1st". Better not have too many more of those.

Bar Harbor has many outdoor activities from Rock Climbing which Kristin really wanted to do but was struck from our to do's with the rain. We never had another chance to do rock climbing as we headed into less mountainous regions. We did make it to Sand Beach - it was the perfect day, not a soul on this large sandy cove, I just can not understand why, the water was calm, weather 65, clear sand - what is a few drops of rain. This place must be a big attraction as not only are there areas to wash your feet but your body and dressing rooms along with long shore line well maintained paths - we chose the van due to the rain. Thunder Hole which is around from Sand Beach is a spot where water comes into the rocks and makes a sound like thunder. I can imagine what this would sound like on a really heavy wave day, but as our luck was holding - no wave over 6"!!!! We rode Route 1 from Bar Harbor to Portland and I did not see one light house - can you imagine. Kristin was getting a little tired of sighseeing so I did not push but not one lighthouse nor that quaint little restaurant sitting overlooking the ocean with the town behind it. Next time think I will just rent a boat and sail up the coast till I find my little restaurant and lots of lighthouses.

We spent the night north of Camden in the state park. I wish we had taken time to explore this little town as from Mt Baddie it appeared to be a quaint little place to stop and stay for a few days. If you get there look for my little restaurant as I am sure it must be there!!! Good night from Hershey, PA.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Location: Hershey, USA

June 13 - 14, 2009 8:00am by Connie
We arrived in Camden,ME around 6:30 pm looking for the only State Park shown on our road map. I did not want to put in after dark like the night before - just too hard.

What a great park, Camden Hills State Park, Camden, ME, nice size with sites that lend to privacy, trees, underbrush, with or without water & electricity, several private shower rooms, large clean bathrooms and what must be the best view in all of ME on top of mountain. When we checked in the women advised us to drive up to Mt Battie Summit, with an elevation of 800'. I thought, right at 800' elevation when so many mountains around almost double the height what could we see. Was I wrong - a 180 degree or more panoramic view and add to that a rock tower. A photographers dream site. The view started with a small village in a cove with what appeared to be moored sail boats, from the harbor your eyes spanned across the ocean or bays to islands doting along and as you looked further you could see mountain ranges. This was a place to sit and wait for the lighting to change. When we arrived the sky was blue with the sun setting for what I think might be perfect photo light, we will see. I could stay here for weeks
to see sunrises & sunsets or storms brewing over the sea and all the while being protected in the stone walled tower. We later learned a restaurant sat on this spot but was never rebuilt after a fire.

I have found Kristin is the happiest when camping out as I. It must be the tranquility and peace from all noises or the campfire, which last night gave more mosquito protection then we or others in this park needed - it smoked and smoked. Must find better fire wood.

Kristin and I did another first while in Bar Harbor, ME - we went to a physic. She had her palm read while I had a Tarot reading. I can not speak for Kristin but it was a little to eerie. The first thing out of her was around early 2000 I started struggling and approximately 2 years ago I lost my aura, myself and my way. I had an extremely hard time. I could only sit there looking at her as that is when my parents came to live with me and approximately 2 years ago I told my sister my dad who was living with us was taking me down faster then himself. I felt like I was drowning. She also told me at the end of this year I was going to be making a big break away from what I am doing. Again, jaw in hand, I just stared at her - I have been planning on retiring the end of year. She said a few other things which were interesting about the future, but not in my plans that I know of. She did tell me I need to work on getting my aura back. I advised her I was aware of this and had just recently started working on that and this trip was part of getting myself back.

My one dream for this trip was to find a quaint little restaurant sitting on the ocean and have fresh lobster. I did not find that, did not really look but in one place, but did settle for a restaurant that was featured as Maine's best kept secret Lobster Pound restaurant. It was excellent and did not break the bank. A fresh whole lobster, corn on cob, large coleslaw & drink was $18. You could get lobster sandwiches and just about anything lobster. It is called Trenton Bridge Lobster Pound. I forgot to ask why all the Lobster restaurant were called pounds. I assume because it is sold by the pound, but if you know please share.

Saturday started out so wonderful, with another visit to Mt. Baddie, talking to an artist and her friend on top of the hill, then realizing time was running out and needed to get further down the road as K had officially given up in wanting to go another thing. I did stop at several towns along the way looking for out door activities but she only wanted to shop and get home. We decided to get into NY then spend Sunday night in Hershey, PA area with another niece. However, MA started with a bang - massive blow out at 70 MPH. We were extremely lucky and I only have one suggestion to the Mass. road dept., please put pull offs along your highways. Riding in the left lane there was a curb and a drop off if I pulled off there, the right lane was the same, but luckily there was an exit where we came to a stop. I wish to really thank the cars behind me whose quick thinking most likely saved us from being hit. The cars behind put their emergency flashers on and slowed 3 lanes of traffic down for us to cross the lanes and come to a safe stop. Last night I had nightmares about it and how in a breath we could have been destroyed and my sister would never forgive me. I will be holding my breath for another 3 1/2 hours tomorrow. I knew I would have a large responsibility and never worry about such things even when taking grandchildren across country, but always with my husband. This time it was by myself and I felt a different weigh. I wonder if one every quites worrying about the small things. I know I do not, always such a guilty feeling that I will do wrong. The Tarot cards found that also. Just a bit of luck but she did not tell me I was going to be rich so might as well quite buying those lotto cards.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Location: USA

Over the last day and a half not much has happened. Realizing that we were running out of time we did a lot of driving. We awoke up and went up to the top of Mt. Battie so AC could take more pictures. As i was wondering around I SAW A SNAKE!!!! I screamed and ran away. YUCK! We stopped in Portland, Maine to eat lunch and to do some shopping. We ate lunch at the Portland Lobster Co. but AC was not very impressed with. We walked around and bought some gifts then we are once again on our way. Within ten minutes of crossing the Massachusetts we heard a weird sound coming from the car. Maybe the van wouldn't get us home safely after all. The noise started getting louder and the car started to shake. We knew at that moment we had a flat tire. Flat ha more like blown. Being in the left hand lane and no where to pull off we started to make our way over. Thank goodness the people in Mass. are nice because they immediately turned on their flashers and slow down traffic. We reached the right side of the road and got out to lok at the damage. Wow was it bad. AC immediately though she could change it herself but i asssured her she could not. I came to the rescue when I pulled out my AAA membership card. If this were a super hero movie I would say here "Have no fear AAA will be here." I called AAA and they told me a truck would be there between then and a half hour. Since we were on a very busy highway and not alot of room to pull off we stood in the grass and waited. In no time at all a policeman pulled up to ask if we were okay. He waited with us while him and AC talked about the economy and the crime rate. We soon learned he was from Trinidad and Togago. Sadly enough he had lived in the states long enough that he had lost his accent. A while later another cop showed up to our scene. The first cop left and the other one stayed. At first we did not like this new cop but he warmed up to us eventually. AAA arrived and that is when we had realized AC didn't even have a tire iron (thanks to either Uncle James or Greg). Good luck trying to change the tire AC. The tire was fixed and we were again on our way. We don't know what tonight will bring us but it is sure to be an adventure.

Friday, 12 June 2009

Location: USA

June 12, 2009 8:07am
I wrote a full page once last night then a 1/2 page when the internet crashed & wiped me out & then the 1/2 page was gone. This am I decided to go back to typing in Yahoo because it will at least save it to a draft if the internet and/or powers.

On our way to QC (Quebec City) we saw sign after sign of "MOOSE" you would have thought they would jump out at us at every turn. We saw the one in road & on way down yesterday we saw one in a salt wallow 5' below the road. When we finally got checked in way past dark last night I ask the hotel receptionist if they had moose in the area. He smiled and said it was rare to see them and in his life had only met 2. I guess we were not lucky but very lucky then.

QC is a lovely city, whether inside the old walls or out, 1/2 million people, clean, clean, clean, outside the walls it appears flat but inside you can tell this place was built for fortification and to be sure the residence never got fat and flabby. I relate it to Macho Picchu or my legs and heart rate do. Up and down and down and up. Please as I mentioned before, be in good shape and if have a disability be prepared for steep inclines and steps. The walled city was built long before handicap was a word. I do wonder how the 65 year olds of yesterday managed on these streets without carts on wheels. But oh the views, when the fog has rolled out. Just look at one of the pictures of the Chateau and I was not at the foot of the hill. The city is filled with more restaurant then I have seen in any other city around the world, ok I have not made it completely around the world just Singapore to Greece. There high season does not start until next week and goes to end of Sept. We were lucky in not running into the mass, 6 million visitors a year. If you love architecture with stone walls, flower baskets, cobblestone streets, french speaking culture who are more then pleased to help you and do speak English, and where you can sit outside and enjoy coffee, or huge bowls of hot chocolate, or an omelet (very popular here) or crepes filled with ham & asparagus or fruit and cream you have stepped into a great place in time. A place if you want to sit and talk for hours after you finished your meal they do not stand over you, a place where service is king and they make you feel like a queen. Actually, this must be instilled in them just as the Chateau was built to attract the rail service being planned across the nation and to house England's Queen when she came to visit. Another education tip as you walk along the port section you will see the streets and sidewalks with waves of color. This shows where the shores of the St Lawrence river came through out time.

Being fascinated with all the children in town one waitress stated schools from all over Canada come there every year. One of their games was breaking into groups of 4 with a what appeared to be a 3 page list - a scanvinger hunt. It was fun to hear the kids shoot out, I found it, and what a wonderful educational tool. The city is so safe they can let even the youngest kids wonder the street without fear. One thing you do need to have fear of is the limited car driver - they remind me of drivers in Mexico City, not as wild but a little fast with so many tourist. I think I only saw one taxi in this city bustling with foot powered people.

The rickshaw ride we took of the old port city was worth every cent. George worked in tourism for 20 years and decided to branch out. What leg muscles he had to have to pull us along those streets and how much more educational it became when he wheeled you inside an area once made for horse and buggy or pulled out to the edge of the river or waived at over 75% of the local people, from the women standing on her balcony or the local restaurant workers. You felt like you were out on a stroll with a popular person.

You will see several pictures taken from our bedroom window yesterday am. It was so very peaceful watching and listening to the sounds of the world going by.

Kristin, went online last night to prove to me cell phones are good for teens. I am most impressed at how she can research a subject. She found a professor of psychiatry and pediatrics from Baylor who stated, "text messaging can bring introverted teens out of their shell, boost their confidence and helps make them friends". I am so shocked to find my granddaughter is an introvert!!! Just being funny. I guess that is what was said just a few years after my years of being a teen that marijuana was ok to use. Actually, in QC they sell all the items needed to smoke it in style and the police turn their cheek if you have a small amount on you. Now mind you I did not try to find out about this - it was told to us by a local when I commented on all the items you find for sell. Each generation has it "your going to die if you keep doing that thing" today it just happens to be the cell. Oh how we knew we were the best generation (still do as we have a chance at getting some Social Security) - nothing changes as todays teens feel the exact same way. One day they will understand that no matter how much life changes it remains the same. Family and friends are the important part of life and sooner or later you will pass from this earth. It is not as much as what the world sees of you but what you feel of yourself and how you make those around you feel. Live each day to the fulest, stop and smell the roses, talk to strangers as they have so much to offer if you just listen.

I think one thing Kristin will take from this trip that stopping an asking a perfect stranger for direction or just striking up a conversation over a camera or menu and finding 10 minutes has passed is a good thing. People like to help/connect/share with you and there are so many interesting stories out there. Our last strangers were on their honeymoon, married in December, from Detriot and she spoke a little French, he was fluent in French and Italian because of his parents. These things you would never know if you just pasted them by.

Want to take this time to say Happy Birthday to my favorite eldest granddaughter. I did start this yesterday and was not late, but technology sometimes brings us back to earth. Love ya and miss you and so wish you were here also - grandma

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Location: USA

It is now the morning of June 11th and AC awoke with a major headache. We both woke up late well at least me at 9:30AM. We got ready and we were out the door and the car was packed around 10:30AM. We went to the restaurant that was just below our hotel and had our breakfast. We then went to the tourist information center to inquire about a bike tour. We met our tour guide who was a local french man and he peddled us all around the lower part of the Old Quebec city. We learned a lot of the cities history and I really enjoyed the tour. We were told that we had to try out a restaurtant that is said to have the best crepes in the city. I do not remember the name right now but i will post it as soon as I can find the reciept. We both ordered a cup of hot chocolate and shared a mixed berry crepe. This was ten times better than the crepes we had the day before. We made our way out of the city and finally found ourself back into the USA. We did not find the perfect crepe but maybe AC capture the perfect picture. We drove and drove and drove and we got gas in between. We finally made it to Bar Harbor, Maine around 9PM. We couldn't find a campsite for the night so we ended up staying in a Best Western. Our new adventure for tomorrow is to find the perfect lobster and still find that perfect picture. Keep following to see if we find either of them.

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Recent Messages

From Kelly
Oh wow! Your articles on the city are wonderful. I can almost picture it! The pictures you have taken so far are great although I am sure they do not live up to your standards. Cant wait to read more and know we all miss you here. Kelly
From Heidi
Kristin -

it doesn't matter your age - its really only a number. what matters is that you remain young at heart.
From Martha
I don't see any pictures of you Connie. Get busy and show where you are.
From Lil sis aka mom
As you can tell it has been along time since Connie has had teenagers. Staying connected is a major social aspect of every teens day. And messy suitcases she has to deal with it just like her room close the door if you don't like it. When they get tired of the mess the eventually clean it up! Right Kristin:)
From Aunt Sara
Sounds like you are having a ball, or trying too. Maybe you should through that cell home in the river. (Oh maybe not, you wouldn't be able to live with her. Kristin enjoy your trip, I know Connie is.
From Heidi
Don't worry AC all of us young people aren't glued to our phones like Kristin - she is an exception.
Response: this is Kristin how would you know Heid you aren't that young anymore
From Martha
What an adventure. Determined elderly adult meets real life. Actually I can tell you are both having a great time. At least I really hope you are.
From James
Stay gone! Martha and I are having a great adventure of our own while your'e gone. haha just kidding. miss you guys.
From Martha
Glad to see you are finally enjoying your trip. Instructions from the home base is to quit bothering you for every little thing.
Just have a great adventure. Talk to you when you get back.
From Vicki
I am SO glad, you found your key. It sounds as though you are enjoying yourselves. I am so envious. I am trying to plan a little overnighter with my BFF on the Titusville to Oil City train Murder Mystery and dinner theater. I hate to say this, because it seems to be a theme, but I am waiting for a time when I will be able to be free to do things wothout having my plans changed. lucky you are to have this adventure before college and wait for it....the rest of your life!! Have ya Vicki
From Heidi
enjoyed the post...but now more pictures please. now that i'm back to work and no longer at the river, i'm kinda jealous of this trip. hope you two are having fun!
From guess who
I thought I'd say hi and tell you a joke....

what did the fish say when he hit a concrete wall???....dam!

Anyways, have fun, love you

ps. I'm bigger and smaller than you (K) at the same time! Guess who!?!
From Linda
Enjoying reading your blog of your travels. What an awesome graduation gift for you Kristin!! Oh, wait a minute your with AC -- maybe not. LOL (Just kidding Connie) Have a wonderful time making memories that will last a lifetime. We need pictures! ;)
From Howard ( Reno )
OK ladies where are you now ?I amawaiting your next entry.
krisitn the key was right where you said it would be. It is almost like travelling with grandma haha. Hope to see pictures soon.
From Heidi
Did you also find the $20?
From Howard ( Reno )
Connie & Kristin, Both of you girls be safe and I'll continue to follow your travels. Also I'll call James just to be sure he is holding down the fort.
Connie love to you and again be safe. Howard
Get your days updated so I can keep up with the right days, Thanks.. sounds like a nice trip but you didn't ask me to go along. Enjoy,. Aunt Sara
From Heidi
Nice travel blog so far. Glad you found the Key. Anyway, hope your second day is going well! Thanks for posting the link on facebook Kris.
From BunnyLady
Kristin, you're doing a great job on the travel journal. See if you can get AC to relax a bit. Maybe when you get off the main routes and find some of those backroads. I don't know if you will actually get this ... but we'll see. Press on, Ladies! We are all glued to these pages to see where you two go next. BL
From Martha
Got your email. Very interesting and exciting. But you know that I have to get to work so maybe I can travel. Yeh, probably to Opelika to buy more bras. Talk to you later and have a great adventure.
From Sandi
Reading about your travels through two sets of eyes is captivating. Your travel through pictures will be interesting as well and looking forward to both.
"May the road rise to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. may the sunshine warm upon your face. The rains fall soft upon your fields and, until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand."
From Heather
I am so Jealous! Glad you guys are having a good time. Please be careful. Tell Connie we took grandaddy off the feeding tube yesterday and they are sending him home today. They said a week at the most. I got to spend about two hours with him alone yesterday talking to him and singing to him and I feel much better about it.

Can't wait to hear more about the trip.

Love you
From Kelly!
Wow! I am so jealous....from the stale candy to the long hours in the car, I cannot imagine all the wonders you all are seeing of our great nation! Be safe and take many photos for I will expect a play by play when you return! I love the diary idea and think this website is a fabulous way to keep in touch with all! Take care! Kelly