After the Cape we drove north towards Vermont to visit my mum, her husband Tim, and all the animals that have been part of their life (and mine!) for the past decade. We set the navigation app for Norwich, VT, put the Campbulance in drive, and rumbled away.
The spring we saw in NYC had already faded to early spring by Boston, and as we moved north the buds got smaller. Vermont is just coming out of a long winter; the grass is green, the spring floods past, but the trees still carry a cautious attitude towards the season. The drive was beautiful, nonetheless.
Driving into Norwich, Chelsea and I were trying to coordinate with my mum, and find a place to meet, until she texted us:
“We see you!”
Apparently the Campbulance is easy to spot when you want to see her. We met, and they led us to the build site of the new house, and then on to their current rental, a quaint, old farmhouse with room for the three Australian shepherds (Bear, Flyer, and Piper), the old goat (Puggy), and the cat (cat).
Dinner and bed were both excellent. The next day was started with a morning jog, which felt so good after days of relative motionlessness, followed by breakfast at Lou’s Restaurant, and then errands and Campbulance cleaning. The cleaning, which started as heavy vacuuming, quickly turned into light demolition work as we tore down ugly padded panels and other bits useless to us.
Chelsea had multiple flashes of genius, and solved two huge problems. We had been struggling with finding an elegant solution to the placement of the kitchen, which would hopefully have room to include a sink, a burner, and an RV style freezer/cooler. She saved us from a disappointing compromise by noticing that the rear facing airway chair would be easy to rip out, and open up a lot of room with direct access to the exterior storage units. In addition, she found hardware located under the bench seat that was used for carrying an extra gurney in situations that required the ambulance to transport two patients. She’s planning to use that same hardware configuration to support a two person sleeping solution, which was a lot more elegant and refined that my “get-drunk-and-sleep-outside-under-a-tarp” strategy. After all the heavy thinking, we called it a night.
Day two of the Vermont excursion included breakfast with mum at King Arthur’s Flour headquarters, and then a few more hours of heavy vacuuming and bleaching. Also, we finally started to use the cabinets for storage, and it is amazing how just using the feature made the box feel like home.
We packed up, gave the puppies goodbye treats, pet the goat, looked at the cat, and started the van. A few kisses and tears later, we were west bound, off to Niagara Falls and the Great Divide.