Bleak Friday

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We ventured out of the woods and into a nearby town today. Our main goal was to find a heated hose for the water that goes into our trailer from the outside spicket. My main goal was to hopefully get a little Christmas shopping done. We accomplished neither. It was a weird day. The weather was weird, the people were weird (but very friendly), the shops were weird, and I kept seeing fantastic photo opportunities but I just couldn’t get the right angles. I’ll show you the pictures anyway, at least you’ll have an idea of what a bit of the surrounding area looks like.

This church was really neat. I love how all of the small towns have chapels with steeples and still have the headstones in the cemeteries. Although you can’t tell in the picture, this church was lovely because it sat on a hill and was surrounded by other rolling hills. There’s a large chapel in the front and a smaller one in back.

After a quick stop at the cemetery we headed into Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania.

We parked on main street and had maybe been walking and looking at shops for 5 minutes before we heard a loud crash behind us. A college student had run a red light and a woman in the intersection that we had just crossed hit him. She was an older woman and jumped out of her car and starting screaming for him to back up his car. Tony, who I swear has a bladder the size of a walnut, needed to find a restroom so I stood on the sidewalk and waited to make sure everyone was OK.

I checked on the woman who was sobbing on the hood of her car. And while I was trying to calm her down and tell her everything was going to be just fine, I heard more sobbing. The college student was sobbing his way down the street to her and yelling, “I’m sorry, I’m SO sorry!” By the time he reached her car, they were both leaning on the hood and sobbing…loudly. Wailing. I certainly  understand that a car wreck is somewhat traumatic, but this was…interesting, to say the least. I moved the woman’s car out of the way of oncoming traffic and Tony soon showed up and moved the boy’s car from the middle of the street to the curb.

There are many of these row houses (that’s what I’m calling them anyway), along the streets in the small towns. This picture doesn’t do them justice. Many of them (not these) on the way into Bloomberg were really interesting to see. I will get pictures of them for you either tomorrow or Saturday when we leave. Tony didn’t care for them and thought they looked old, but I thought they were really neat and kind of quaint. Many of them were decorated beautifully for the holidays. Unlike most places in the west, these houses are right off the main sidewalk with little room between. This picture shows some with a little front yard but many of them barely have a speck of a front yard. You better like your neighbors!

So the college boy tried to reach his mom via his cell to no avail. He was sobbing, “Mom! Mom!” and I finally asked him if I could talk to her and he informed me she wasn’t even on the phone. Luckily, she must have seen that he had called and called him right back. I took the phone from him so he didn’t scare her to death with his sobbing and yelling, and calmly explained the situation to her and told her that he was basically hysterical. She seemed to take it all very well and said to me, “I don’t even know if I want to come down there”, and laughed. Then she asked me how much damage was done to both of the cars.

Once we were off the phone he seemed to calm down and Tony and I tried to explain to him that everyone at least once in their lives has a car wreck. His car barely had a dent and scratch over one of the back fenders and her car had a crushed front bumper and broken headlight and no one was injured. So all in all, they were very lucky. There was only one part that was upsetting to me and it was right when I heard the crash and looked back. There were 4 young children standing about 2 feet from the woman’s car. It made my stomach churn. All the what if’s and thank God’s came streaming in and I had to tell myself to stop.

The drama of the woman and the college boy quickly distracted me from the “what could have happened” scenarios. The college boy was a sweet kid who had obviously never been in a wreck and must have thought he had killed someone. Or maybe his mother isn’t a yeller and he wasn’t used to being screamed at by the older woman, I don’t know. Once we knew he was OK and the policeman arrived, who took his sweet time driving the block and a half from the police station I might add, Tony and I headed back to our truck. That was about enough of the downtown area.

We finally ran across a place for lunch where I thought I could eat something gluten free and dairy free. I had a lovely salad with turkey, cranberries, walnuts, and pears. There was a lot of head shaking between Tony and I over the car wreck and the drama of it all, and I told Tony that I would bet $1,000 that the college boy was texting and that’s why he didn’t see the red light. The woman had also mentioned that she just had a “bunch” of surgeries…so then I was wondering if she was possibly medicated and that’s why she didn’t see him barrel through the stoplight.

On our way into town we saw a mall sign and after we were done eating we headed in that direction to see if we could find some nice places to do a bit of Christmas shopping. We parked in the lot of something called The Bon-Ton. Hmmm…we thought. What an odd name. Well, it turns out it was definitely odd because it was exactly like a Macy’s packed into a one floor store. For those of you that don’t know, Macy’s used to be called The Bon Marche. After doing some research, it turns out it’s an actual store and not a knock off of Macy’s. Besides the small size, the weirdest part was that they had shopping carts. We headed into the mall and it was almost like you could hear crickets. There were hardly any shoppers…odd for Black Friday, and it was so quiet that the Christmas music playing in the background almost had a creepy tone. We looked through the entire mall (which was small), bought some chocolate and that was about it.

Before we headed to the mall we drove around the town college and tried to find a hill where I could get a pretty picture of the surrounding area. Tony and I agreed that about 90% (or more) of the houses we’ve seen on our drive through Pennsylvania do not have fences. We’re not sure why that is and we’re wondering if their pets are just very well-behaved and know to stay in their own yards.

Once we felt we had seen all there was to see we tried to locate a grocery store which was not as easy as it sounds. It’s also not easy to find organic foods in this neck of the woods either. Maybe we’ve become organic food snobs, I’m not sure, but it does freak me out a bit to eat vegetables and meats with pesticides and hormones when we haven’t been doing so for more than three years. We’re hoping organic options are more readily available in NH. If not, we’ll have to make twice monthly trips to the Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s in Nashua, about an hour away from our new house.

It started to rain and we loaded the truck with our bags of non-organic groceries and headed “home”. We both agreed that the day had been a weird one and we decided home-made pizza would make us feel better.

And it did. Turns out pepperoni and spicy sausage are the cure for a weird day.

3 thoughts on “Bleak Friday

  1. It’s so good that you were there to help in that situation. They both sound like highly-strung people who go to pieces with the slightest issue. Thank goodness someone calm and sensible with her head together was able to assist xx

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  2. LOL, April, your comments about being in the East sound just like us when we came to the South East. It is an eye opener. Is it not?

    If the people in the “fenceless” houses have dogs, then you will probably find that they have underground electric fencing. I see dogs outside laying in the front yard all the time, and they also wear a ‘shock’ collar. They never leave their property without an escort and a leash. As for the food, we find the same obstacles in procuring healthy foods here. It is getting better in Huntsville, but we still make 3 to 4 journeys annually into Nashville to get to a Trader Joe’s, or Whole Foods, for provisions! I can tell you that the beauty you will find in the East will far outweigh the inconveniences.

    Enjoying your observations immensely! ~Lynda

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