July 7 A Visit to Stow, Ohio

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Breakfast at Panera Bread

I was awake at 5:30 again. It must be the sunrise that wakes me up. I am going to have to find some thick blackout curtains for the bedroom. There was a metallic rapid tapping noise coming from someplace. It turned out to be a woodpecker dulling its beak on a road sign post. I hope it got something for its efforts. Maybe it was a new species, “metalpecker”.

I managed to sleep off and on until after 6:00. The shower was first on my list. I used the facilities that were further away from my site. They still weren’t great but at least they had a bench. I also had shaved and brushed my teeth in the RV to reduce the amount of time I needed to spend in the park showers.

The RV was readied for the move. I dumped the sewage and headed toward Cabella’s in Buffalo, NY. Google Maps was doing well until I got near to the store. It directed me to turn left onto Union Rd. from Walden, then right onto Duke Rd.. Once I got onto Duke Rd. the program was heading me away from Cabela’s. I saw the store to my right and went that way again ignoring the directions. I learned that I could have stayed on Walden and gotten there quicker.

Cabela’s was not open yet. It was only 8:45. I had hoped to find a Tim Horton’s but settled on Panera Bread. A ham and egg sandwich, medium coffee, and Cinnamon Crunch cost $8.05. A thunderstorm had moved through while I ate breakfast. I wasn’t even aware of it. When I walked outside the parking lot was wet. It was still sprinkling. I stopped by the RV to grab my jacket.

Once Cabela’s opened I paid off my credit card balance. I have been using it to gain points toward future purchases. So far I have used it to discount the costs of a fly rod and waders. I browsed the store for a few items but did not find exactly what I wanted. I did not make any purchases.

I moved west on I-90 to Campers World in Hamburg, NY. I arrived in a downpour. I commented to a store clerk that it was raining like this the last time I had stopped at this location. She blamed me. I found a 6’X9’ ground mat for $39.99. It was very compact and lightweight.
I asked an employee at the service deask if there was an air hose I could use to fill my tires. He seemed preoccupied and said that I would have to wait for service and it could be an hour before they could see me. It would also cost for them to check the air pressure with a minimum half hour billing at $126/ hour. I furled my eyebrows as I looked at him over the rim of my glasses. It was my “Are you crazy?” look. “No thanks.”

There was a Tim Horton’s nearby. I bought a cup of coffee and left for I-90 and all points west toward Ohio.

The fuel in Pennsylvania was ridiculously priced. I have been getting diesel for $2.35-$2.45/ gallon. In Pennsylvania it ranged from $2.58-$3.15. Gasoline was comparably overpriced. I resolved to fill up in Ohio.

Twelve miles from the Ohio border the low fuel light came on. I was feeling anxious by the time I made it to Ohio SR 7. The traffic was backed up due to a severe accident on north bound 7. A car was overturned. Fire rescue was on the scene along with police and a tow truck. I turned north away from the Love’s fuel station to avoid the congestion. There were no other stations so I did a U turn heading back south. The police were directing traffic on the south side of the overpass. I got stopped along with others while east bound I-90 traffic was allowed to exit on SR 7. Precious fuel was burning away.

I made it to the pumps. It took 19.8 gallons to fill the tank. I normally fuel up between fifteen and eighteen gallons. The fuel tank is rated at twenty two gallons. I don’t want to push it like that again.

The combined fuel station, McDonald’s was overcrowded with customers. I managed to find a parking space and took a short break. I had a snack and headed west again. The cleanup crew was still working on the crash site. It appeared that another car had been involved in the accident but it was in much better shape than the upside down vehicle.

I traveled west again on I-90 to the I-271 south express. It was early so I ended up going to Cuyahoga Valley National Park at Boston Mill, Ohio. It is a town steeped in the history of the Erie Canal. I enjoyed a coffee chocolate chunk ice cream at the Trail Mix store. While sitting outside eating the ice-cream I spoke with a young couple. I asked where they were from. When the woman replied “We live in Fremont, Ohio.” I was astounded.

 

“That’s my home town.” I said. As it turned out they lived on Clover Street near my sister who lives on Wood Street. I told them that I had just moved away from Auburn, Indiana. Her mother had lived in Butler, Indiana. It was like forming a complete circle of geographic parallels. We wished each other well as they headed off on their bikes with their kids. I walked across the street to the museum.

The museum spotlighted the history of the Erie canal in the area. Boat making and local industries were also a part of the displays. A park volunteer told me about the National Park. I remembered the town and the tall bridges nearby from a trip down the Cuyahoga Railroad I had taken a few years ago. It was neat to see it all up close.

Before leaving I walked around the area along the old canal trail. An abandoned canal lock sits in disrepair as a reminder of days gone by. A couple stopped to talk with me for a while. It started when the woman asked me about my Indian Motorcycle T-Shirt I was wearing. They were from California and had been in Chicago for a convention. They were headed for Jamestown, NY near where I had just spent the last two days. He wanted to visit an old Army buddy from his service time in Vietnam in 1967. I had met an older couple from Jamestown at Darrien State Park. After a few more questions I determined that the couple I had met in NY could not have been the same couple the man was talking about.

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Boston Mill Train Station Cuyahoga Valley National Park

I saw a few park rangers. One of them stopped to tell me about the area and offered some ideas on things to see. I was ready to leave by then and thought maybe I could make time to check things out yet during the weekend. The Ledges rock formations looks very interesting.

The drive to Stow, Ohio took me through Cuyahoga falls. I heard Crissie Hynde’s voice in my head singing, “way to go Ohio”. It was 5:20 by the time I arrived at my nephew’s. His kids are visiting. We went to Bob Evans for dinner then spent a quiet night with music and videos online.

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