FALL FOLIAGE TOUR DELIGHTS WALKABOUT LEAF PEEPERS
Late September brought eleven Walkabouters to New England to tour parts of New Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusetts in search of colorful leaves. The group landed in Boston and drove to the Concord area of NH for the first couple of nights. They traveled around Lake Winnipesaukee and admired lake-effect foliage, rode a hay wagon to pick apples and toured a loon refuge and took a walk in the woods.
En route to VT they enjoyed a scenic drive through the White Mountains, visiting a dog chapel and gift shop in St. Johnsbury, a maple sugar factory and the first of several home cooked church dinners served by locals. The dinners were preceded by musicales, including country western, folk or organ hymn sing music.
On Cabot-touring day, the group visited the famous creamery, a turkey farm (where their dinner was hatched), and were astonished to watch a robot milking several cooperative cows. Since it rained nearly every day, walking was optional, so the group visited Glover, VT and admired taxidermied animals in the general store as well as the giant paper mache puppets at the Bread and Puppet theater museum in an old dairy barn.
Plainfield, VT found the group visiting the nearby Barre granite quarries, including a tour, a chance to bowl on an alley made of granite, and also a tour of Hope Cemetery,a sculptural showplace of Rock of Ages granite monuments, including those shaped like race cars, airplanes and soccer balls — all made from granite. The group also toured the granite state house in Montpelier, and their motel in Hardwick, VT was the triste point of a former governor and his mistress (on the hush-hush). Part of the group enjoyed bingo in Hardwick, a gypsy concert in Cabot.
Vermont foliage was spectacular this year, and nearly at peak for our Walkabouters. The group also had a chance to tour the Fairbanks Museum or Athenaeum in St. Johnsbury, or check out thrift shops before dinner in a famous diner in Lyndonville. There were no less than two covered bridges to walk across – one in Marshfeld and one in Rockingham at the site of the famous VT Country Store.The group’s last day was spent near Lexington, MA, where one of the first skirmishes of the Revolutionary war was fought. On the last day of the tour, before catching their afternoon flight back to San Diego, the group enjoyed a walk on the Freedom Trail in Boston, as well as a driving tour of famous sites in Boston.
Walkabouters hit the road for a trip to Falmouth on the south shore of Nantucket Sound, for a boat ride to Martha’s Vineyard, where some took an island bus tour and others joined on a public bus to Edgartown and Oak Bluffs, home of colorful camp meeting cottages. Weather was spectacular on the trip, and the group took in a Cape League baseball game, an historic lecture at the Olde Colonial Court House in Barnstable, cocktails at Dan’s pool, and several thrift shops. En route back to Boston, the only rainy day, the group visited historic Plymouth, where the Mayflower II is ordinarily docked, but out for repairs. From early bird walks to picnic meals, celebrations and concerts, the group was kept busy and sent home tired!