Joe and Nancy

Joe and Nancy
Our Home on Wheels (Click on image above for our web albums.)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

USMA West Point, NY


After we left Andrews Air Force Base on Sept 9th, we headed that Friday morning to Winchester, VA Camping World.  We had a noon appointment to get our Dometic Model 1402 fridge worked on.  Well, we made it there, driving in rain most of the way up I-66.  I just hate to drive our big rig in the rain.  Sometimes you just have to suck it up and plow on though.  So, we got new circulating fans in and left there and headed for Pennsylvania around 3 that afternoon.  We wound up in Carlisle, about 60 miles, give or take a few, from Newark, NJ.  Wanted to overnight at the Walmart there, but were met by one of Carlisle's finest, even before we could shut the diesel down, and were told we couldn't, as Walmart didn't own the property.  And the owner didn't want overnighters.  So we drove about three blocks and parked in Home Depot for the night.  As we put out a couple sides, the rain finally stopped.  What a long day on the interstates in the rain.  Boy were we both tired!  Up the next morning and we headed for Trenton, NJ to pick up my new Nikon D-7000 camera.  What a beautiful day of sunshine and warm temps and a slight breeze as we pulled into the Walmart lot in Trenton for a couple of hours.  Trenton is not an easy town/city to get around in with a 43 footer towing a 4-door Jeep.  So we walked over to Ryther Camera, got the shiny new D-7000 and walked back, which turned out to be about a 3 mile round trip walk.  No worries though as Nancy and me love to walk.  Just not sure how safe we were though in the concrete jungle with all the wild animals.  It's now time to drive of the Garden State Parkway for about 90 minutes, and on into West Point.  And, oh did I mention the tolls?  Do know how much our tolls were?  Nancy does!  Never knew big rigs towing was SOOOOO expensive.  $34, ouch!  Finally, the FamCamp at West Point and it's about 5 in the afternoon on Saturday.
Above is looking up the (muddy) Hudson River just after Irene and Lee made their way through the State.  By the way, has anyone drove up Round Pond Drive into the FamCamp at West Point?  Wow, that was an experience.  Steep and very winding, and it was tricky, wide turns and groaning diesel.
Looking at at the recreation/sports complex.
Looking across the Hudson River above and below, one of the many large homes across the River.
We were fortunate enough to be at West Point on Sunday, 9/11!  And more fortunate to be able to attend worship services at the Cadet Chapel.  And what a treat when we found out that the guest speaker was none other than the past Chief of Army Chaplains, General David Hicks, accompanied by his lovely wife, Janice.  Gen Hicks spent 43 years serving our country and providing support and spiritual leadership to literally thousands of our troops from one end of the earth to the other.  His office on his last duty station as Chief, was the Pentagon, and he was there on 9/11.  His message on this morning was very moving and emotional.  Below is a pic with them and us.
What a beautiful chapel!
When our daughter was in college at Virginia Tech, her engineering class (concrete semester) went to a university somewhere in Minnesota (been a few years back and I can't remember which), and competed in a concrete canoe contest.  That's right, a concrete canoe building and floating/paddling contest.  There were several colleges fromacross the country competing, including the USMA, West Point.  And as luck would have it, she met Pete, (her husband now) who was representing West Point on their entry.  Well, as you know by now, they married a short time later, I would guess about a year, and some 11 years later and two beautiful children, Austin & Alexandra, that concrets canoes brought them together, and by golly it'll take a battleship to separate them now.  So, now you know why these two pics are inserted here.
Well, if you've ever been to West Point, you have heard about the Thayer Hotel and it's renowned Sunday Morning bbrunch/buffet.  Well, we didn't make there for that, as we just can't seem to get $28.95 worth of food anymore from anywhere, much less the Thayer.  So we opted for nice quiet Monday morning buffet of $8.95 at the Hotel.  Below are a few more pics taken from the grounds of the Thayer Monday morning.
Above, Nancy, and I don't think she thinks she was in the frame.  Surprise!
 Above & below are inside the General Eisenhower lounge at the Thayer.
 Below, the patio where we sat for our breakfast.  The picture above with me and Nancy was taken on the steps just inside the black rail seen below.
Below, a couple of pics from the lobby of the Thayer.
And here a few more pics from around the beautiful campus along the Hudson.
 Above, The Thayer Hotel front.
 Above, the Cadet Chapel and below, some of the great chain links that was preserved as a fence around this display.  The chain fence streted across the Hudson as a defensive measure to thwart any British ship's movements up the Hudson during the Revolution days.  The chain was supported across the River by means of pontoon-type flotation devices.
 Below, nice looking canon, eh!?
So, our time at the USMA ended and we were off Monday afternoon, Sept 12 for points north, specifically, Boston and Hanscom Air Force Base FamCamp.  So, till the next time, RVing Beach Bums.