Tuesday, July 21, 2009

MaineLining - Day 4 - Forts, Arsenals and Poets

We found the Super 8 in Bangor last night and decided to stay there. MeAsWe and Me stayed at plenty of S8’s during our trips, but this one was especially nice. The breakfast bar was fully packed with donuts, cereals, milks, coffee (24 hour btw) and everything they advertise. Usually we find one of the juice machines broken, maybe 1 english muffin or the coffee is not ready. It was a welcomed change from the norm. First on the agenda is a trip to an auto part store to replace the burned out taillight bulbs. Thanks to the V-Rodder from Canada that told us they were burned out last night.

With the bulbs installed and working we headed for Cole’s Transportation Museum. Museums are worth 1000 points in the OSJ hunt. We pulled into the parking lot and found more than just the museum. There was a tank (1000 points), a thru truss bridge (500 points) as bonuses to the bonii location.

Our next destination was a president town, Clinton. Now if Hillary had gotten herself elected this would have been worth double points, like the Franklins (Pierce and Roosevelt). Oh we did inhale btw.

One of the neat things about the treasure hunt, by going to places you would not ordinarily go to, you end up on roads you would probably never travel on. The Treasure Hunt is a game with no real reward at the end other than you can say you got more points than anyone else, hence presumably you road to more places, the real benefit is the roads and places you see.

Fort Halifax is located in Winslow Maine and the oldest blockhouse in the US. It is also a National Landmark.

This bridge is not special, but it sure was a pain to take a picture of and why I posted here. We had to cross an intersection that curved around a bend, crossing multiple RR tracks and their off shoots, make a U – Turn and come to rest just far enough to peak around the corner to take a picture. What some will do for 500 points.

Muffler Men is a term to describe statues used as roadside advertising made in the 60’s and 70’s. International Fiberglass of Venice, CA made the most famous of these 20 foot tall statues and have become icons of roadside treasure hunters. This is a midget wanna-be muffler man.

Winding our way down from Bangor to Augusta our time sensitive stop was North Country Harley Davidson for a stamp. With that out of the way, we headed for some more landmarks.

Fort Western is on the banks of the Kennebec River and sits right on the Augusta Town Hall grounds. It is oldest surviving wooden fort in the US, built in 1754.

Next stop, Kennebec Arsenal. This is the most intact military munitions depot built still existing, erected between 1828-1838. What struck me, it looked like the abandoned mental institutions I have been to in previous treasure hunts. Further research showed that it had been used as a state mental hospital at one time. The place has essentially been unused for 30 years.

Making our way south, MeAsWe reminded me, we should be hungry and maybe a bite to eat was in order. I knew exactly where we were headed. I have eaten at the A-1 Diner in Gardiner multiple times and have always enjoyed my meals here. It is on the pricey side, well actually it is down right expensive for lunch, but good. One thing about Diners is it seems to be easy to strike up a conversation with the people. I don’t know if it is the size that makes it easy to break down those barriers, the quaintness or is it something the diner owners pump into the air. I have been to well over 100 diners and all seem to be the same.

It is 3pm as we head out of the A-1, and we are headed for New Hampshire for some president towns and 2 HD dealers for stamps. Even though the first HD dealer is only 75 miles away I had my doubts we would make it there by 5. A quick call to the dealer would tell me if they were open to 6. No answer, no voice mail, no nothing. I called the other dealership and they were open until 6. I asked about the one further north (they own it) and she told me they were closed on Tuesday.

We have one quick stop in Gardiner, Erwin A Robinson House, a National Landmark. Now I have to admit most of the places I don’t have a clue why they are Landmarks until after I get home and do some research for posting a Waymark.com This guy was a poet and won the Pulitzer Prize in 1922, 1925 and 1928.

At this point it was 4pm or so, we were 175 miles to home, and it was beginning to rain. We decided we had chased enough for the last 4 days and to simply head home via slabs. Well sorta. I-295 is under construction and the south bound side is closed. We are detoured down US 201 to Brunswick. Making Brunswick, I tell MeAsWe that I simply need to take a rest. Lunch has given me the sleepy’s. We parked our selves in a booth in Subway, pretended to read the paper at the booth and both of us fell asleep for the next 30 to 45 minutes. Waking up we find it is raining steadily and we head out on the slabs for the 3-4 hour ride home.

No comments: