The first step


“Never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly.”  ~Author Unknown

EDITORS NOTE: These posts will most likely be a day behind as I get time in the evenings.  So the following are last night’s events.

Leaving Friday night was a good thing.  It cut about 6 hours off of what would have been my drive today.  I drove just into Ohio last night, pulled in to a rest area and found a dimly lit spot to try and catch a few hours of sleep before resuming my crusade.  Not planning ahead, I had packed all of my gear with the back seats folded down.  This prevented my driver’s seat from reclining flat and forced me to try and grab some sleep in a more less upright position.  Just when I was about to doze off, three busses pulled in.  Why are three busses stopping at a rest area at 2am?  Don’t these modern busses have built in bathrooms?   Could their diesel engines possibly make any more noise?  Between the “sleeping” position, and what has to be the busiest 3am rest area in the world, I managed to get about 2 hours of sleep – I think.

Part of this trip is the drive itself, but let’s not kid anyone, there’s nothing worth seeing until I pass through Kansas.  At least nothing that I haven’t already seen.   That’s why I was glad to breeze through it at night collecting all species of bugs on the front of my Jeep.

At the crack of dawn, which was about 5am, I was easily up (mostly from discomfort) and on the road to Cedarbrook.  I had a preconceived notion of what this little mom and pop shop “should” look like but you never really can tell.  Very easy to find, just a few miles off I-70, I pull on to a gravel drive just wide enough for one car and a sign directing me back to the office.  There are home made stop signs around that say “Whoa” instead of “Stop”.  Very homey.  Another sign directs newcomers to circle the office building and pull up on the opposite side.  I pull up just as another camper is leaving.  A gray-haired, retired woman greets me with a smile and asks what she can do to help me.  She glances at my Delaware license plate and says, “we’ve been expecting you”.  Don’t get too many people from Delaware around here.  I take a look around and realize that this is not a typical KOA in that people pass through like an airport.  This is the type of RV park that people with huge RV’s store their campers at year round.  Some residents are there, most have not returned for the season yet.

We walk in to the office and I make some small talk stating how it’s good to stand up and walk around after that drive. She asks where I”m headed and I fill her in on my story.  As she’s filling out the normal paperwork, she looks up and says, are you a AAA member?  I reply that I’m not and she smirks and says “you are now” and gives me a 10% discount.  Oh yeah, two bucks off!  That’s going right in the gas fund.  She says she has two sites across from each other and one, more private site down the road a bit.  Naturally I go for that one.  We wrap up the business side and she begins to point out where the facilities are, shower, bathroom, etc and says that she’ll show me to my site.  She looks around for her golf cart and curses her husband for “stealing” if again.  Then she asks if she can ride with me and I explain that she can but I’d have to move a lot of things.  I tell her I’ll find it on my own and set off.

With the tent up, I make myself some beef stew for lunch and start snapping photos of the place.  I can see the lake from my campsite so I take a walk down toward it.  I get about 20 paces from my tent, looking for photo ops when I almost step on a 3 foot black snake laying across the path.  I need to be more careful.   I’m forgetting the first rule of the outdoors (especially being solo):  always watch where you’re stepping.  Had that been in Utah, that black snake could have been something more serious.  I’ll post a picture later once I get to bas e camp.

The weather is beautiful, warm, sunny and a slight breeze.  I’m already tired from the previous two days and I’ve entered in to a food coma after lunch.  I think it’s time for a nap.  Up early tomorrow for a full days drive through the heartland and spending the night in the Rockies.  It only gets better from here.

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