This past weekend, one week after Dad’s move to Pennsylvania, I decided to go for a visit to help him get things situated.
Moving into a new place and unpacking can be a bit overwhelming. It always helps to have a voice of reason when one comes across something they’re not sure whether they should keep or toss. Especially when the previous owners left a bunch of stuff behind. Lots of good stuff, but also a bunch of things Dad really does not need.
Since work was really busy last week and I worked some long hours, my boss said I could leave early on Friday. It was 2:30 by the time I set out. I hadn’t planned on taking the bike, but the weather was gorgeous. So I said to myself, “Why not?” It’s only about a 150-mile trip.
The weather looked gorgeous, but it was hot. Temps were only in the 80s, but I was wearing full riding gear. After several hours in the saddle, with a few short rest stops thrown in, I decided a stop at Jim Mack’s Ice Cream was in order.
Jim Mack’s Ice Cream was established in 1958. They still make the ice cream on the premises and have expanded the menu to include burgers, hot-dogs, french fries and more.
Jim Mack’s is not just an ice cream shop. It’s a destination. I always like to look around while there.
But first, I NEEDED an ice cream. When I stepped inside, I was quite surprised and pleased to see this.
I LOVE pretzels. Those soft pretzels were tempting, but I already had my heart set on ice cream. I just had to try a pretzel cone.
I only got a small ice cream, which was a mix of chocolate marshmallow topped with mint chocolate chip. It was amazing. Especially when I got down near the cone and could taste the salt from the pretzel cone as I lapped up the chocolate marshmallow.
While I ate my ice cream, I nosed around. What a funny little place.
Dad’s house was still about 30 minutes away. So I didn’t linger long.
I just love the view from the front of his place.
The air was quite, um, fresh.
Saturday morning, we both slept until after 8, which is a rare treat for me. (Hubby had the dogs with him at the WV place.)
Then we started clearing out. We took a bunch of stuff to Goodwill, hit Five Guys for lunch, and then I bought Dad a pressure washer. He’d never used one. I couldn’t wait to show him what it could do.
His place was a bit dirty on the outside. It’s in the middle of farmland, after all. The exterior walls were covered in dust. Especially under the roof of the deck. Knowing how much he’d enjoy sitting out there, I wanted to brighten it up for him.
The lighting makes it hard to see, but to the left of the door had already been sprayed when I took this shot.
This next image will give you a better appreciation of the difference.
See what I mean? I did all of the walls, the railings, the deck. Basically, if it was standing still, I hit it with the pressure washer.
After doing that for a few hours, I cleaned myself up a bit, then Dad took Aunt Bertha and I over to nearby Mount Joy for a dinner at Gus’s Keystone Family Restaurant. It’s a great place. Home-cooking type food, like a diner, but nicer. I was delighted to see they now serve beer.
I made Dad stop on the way back to his house so I could take this picture at the Reist Popcorn Company…
I didn’t know it at the time, but Reist is “the eastern most popcorn processor in the country.”
On Sunday’s agenda was more pressure washing. But first, Aunt Bertha went for a short, 35-mile ride.
In case you forgot, Aunt Bertha is the cool aunt with the Can Am Spyder.
We’d never ridden together, so we seized the opportunity.
Dad was kind enough to take that picture before we left.
It was a gorgeous morning.
Aunt Bertha picked a lovely spot to stop and rest.
While we were there, I had to snag a couple shots of the two of us.
The sun was really bright, so the lighting was a bit challenging.
On the way back to Dad’s, the sky was amazing. There was this really cool bank of clouds I kept watching. Lucky for me, when we got back to the park, the cloud bank was behind the neighboring farm. So I captured this nice shot.
The clock was ticking, so I got right to pressure washing.
I did the chairs first, then moved on to the patio.
There were thunderstorms looming (notice the sky on the after side of the previous image?), so I didn’t dally. I kept an eye on the radar as I ate lunch. I almost altered my planned route home, but the storms were sparsely scattered. So I kept to my agenda.
My first stop was the Haines Shoe House. Finally. I still can’t believe I’d never been there before. It’s 20 minutes from Dad’s new house.
There’s an ice cream parlor in the heel, but they were getting ready to close. It was almost 4:00 by then, too, so I needed to skedaddle.
By that time, the storms had passed and the sky was a rich, gorgeous blue. But it was hot. In the upper 80s the whole way home. I made a few drink stops, but that’s it. I was sweaty and miserable under all my gear. Safety first, though. I’d rather be hot and uncomfortable temporarily than missing a bunch of skin forever if I crashed.
I did manage to take one picture that perfectly captured the contrasting colors I enjoyed during the ride.
After one final stop in Purcellville, Virginia, about an hour from Warrenton…
…I made it home.
How’s that for a busy and varied weekend?
It felt great to ride, despite the heat. I think I need to go back for another visit. Soon.