We passed the border from New York to Pennsylvania on Saturday night, and had some very interesting encounters. We had a hard time finding a place to park the boler to sleep for the night, since we were in more of a city area rather than the country roads we were getting used to. We tried to stop at a Park and Ride near Stroudsburg, and had just finished eating our dinner when we heard a car stop next to us and a tiny knock on the wrong side of the boler. Tyler went to investigate, and a parking enforcer told us that we had to leave, and couldn’t stay there for the night. So we looked up where the nearest Wal-Mart was (we had to finally give in to our “no Wal-Mart camping” rule) and after some strange detours we finally found it. We stood outside the boler scoping out the surprisingly busy parking lot (for midnight on a Saturday). Our bright yellow caravan proved quite an attraction to the residents of this Wal-Mart. Our first visitor approached us, stumbling over with his shirt over his head yelling “I am unarmed! Don’t you worry! Do you guys think I’m fat?” This got no reply from us. He proceeded to introduce himself as Mad Dog and seemed a little too interested in our plans for the evening. Mad Dog pointed out his “Brownstone” aka the brown Chrysler he lived in at the other end of the parking lot. During our conversation with Mad Dog, another local (who we found out had had his obituary printed the week previous), dropped by to inspect our ride. He drove a black SUV with tinted windows and was acquainted with Mad Dog in some way or another. Their curiosity of the dollar value of our dear home was enough to drive us out of there as fast as “old yeller” could carry us.
Our next task was to find a place outside of the lovely city known as Stroudsburg. We headed down the highway and drove for what seemed like hours (while the truck started leaking some nasty exhaust fumes) on no sleep until suddenly… it appeared.
The bright lights and heavenly blue sheen of Mount Wal-Mart lured us up the side of the huge mountain on which it stood overlooking the countryside below. This was no ordinary Wal-Mart. There were other RVs parked along the outskirts of the lot, so we figured at 2:00 in the morning this was a safe option for us to stay at. The next morning we were astounded at the location of Mount Wal-Mart, and had no idea that there was a countryside surrounding us since it had been so dark when we arrived.
Our next step was to continue our journey to a fellow Land Rover enthusiast’s home in Pennsylvania. Tom Bache and his wife Mira were so wonderful to us, and kindly opened their doors to us on Sunday night. They treated us out to a delicious dinner at a Chinese restaurant in Delaware (only ten miles away), and then invited us back to his home to talk about Land Rovers. Tom is a well respected Land Rover enthusiast for his various involvements. That evening we learned many things, ranging from the history of Delaware to Land Rover travel stories. He also introduced us to the film “Stop Gap”. For those Land Rover enthusiasts who have taken to some of the tall tales told in the Top Gear episode on Land Rover, this is a must see. As a result of that evening we are now also on the hunt for the novel “The Impossible takes a little longer” by Eric Edis. As we discussed some of our reoccurring issues with the truck, Tom become concerned with the exhaust leaks, which had become quite bad, and offered us a full exhaust for the truck which he had in stores at his place (Tom has an amazing parts collection). We gladly accepted his offer and dreamed of an exhaust free drive. We could not thank him enough! They also kindly donated a bag of goodies to take along with us and bagels for breakfast!
The next morning we started our adventure to Maryland, to meet up with yet another Land Rover lover, Mike Loiodice. We’re looking forward to exploring Washington and New York City.