There were 6 die-hard Airstreamers (Lou/Larry, Alan/Carie, Tom/Ella) plus Micah, for a total of 7 for turkey. However, Lou and Larry were at the factory yesterday and met a couple from the Washington D.C. area who were, by chance, staying at Winton Woods and having dinner with cousins who live in the area. Because we count anyone we can we added Gerry and Patsy and the total number for this campout stood at 4 Airstreams!
It was cloudy on Wednesday as we drove down, but not too awfully cold – 42! Our campsites were all out in the open, in case the sun decides to put in an appearance. We had a great campfire in the afternoon, and then a dash to Red Robin for dinner, and a shopping trip to Duluth Trading Post – where everything is soooooo expensive -- we each bought NOTHING! Back at the campsite, at 8:30, some sat out around the fire, and some retreated to Airstreams! You can guess where I went!
Thursday we woke to a rapidly warming 27 degrees and a clear sky. We monitored that temperature all day long as it rose to 44 degrees with a bright sun! Our schedule was to eat at 2:00. Alan had his turkey out and patted down to carefully dry, and Tom set up the turkey cooker complete with a wind screen. At 12:00 the burner was turned on to heat the oil, and at 12:30 the Turkey took a dip. For an hour!
The menu had been planned and was mostly cooked from scratch on location. Lou kicked things off with a sausage/cheese platter that looked like a big turkey, and that helped tide over the appetites!
Lou also brought a ham and made a large batch of dressing. Carie made deviled eggs, sweet potato, and green bean casseroles and pecan and pumpkin pies. I brought gravy from home (made from a turkey I had cooked for Tom’s birthday!) mashed potatoes, dinner rolls, pumpkin bread and cranberry sauce. As time drew closer to eat it warmed up some more, we all got acclimated to the 44 degrees, and we opted to eat outside! Two long picnic tables were completely filled up for 7 people! As we sat around eating, we just couldn’t believe how very perfect it was, and that we had pulled it off!
We were in no rush to clean up (at 44 degrees everything was safe for awhile) and we all made a transfer to the fire ring. Within an hour, the turkey dinner did it’s work and we were all . . . napping away in our chairs!
As the afternoon progressed and some clouds moved in, we discovered that the temperature didn’t feel nearly as nice without the direct sun.
By 4:30, the table was cleared and the sun was on it’s last hurrah, and hats, gloves, and lap blankets appeared. I made it until 6:30 and then headed in to burrow down under the covers for a movie.
Friday morning was above freezing – just – and a beautiful sunny morning. Our plan was to meet Micah around 10:30 at the mall with the Apple Store where he was picking up a new computer. While we were there – I got an Apple Watch! Mind you, it was Black Friday . . . but the Apple store knew how to maximize customer service for sales, and we were in and out quickly. With the mobs at the mall, we returned to the trucks to drive to a Ruby Tuesdays for lunch. By 1:00 we were back at the campground where everyone trickled back in, and an afternoon campfire anchored the next 4 hours of daylight. The temperature had climbed to 56 degrees during mid-afternoon, but as soon as the sun dipped down, the cold returned. For some reason I was feeling the cold a bit more than usual, and I again went in early to snuggle down and read a book.
Saturday morning was another beautiful day, with even higher temperatures and bright sun and . . . the annual clash of Ohio State and Michigan. Larry and Lou made a little trip out on Black Friday and returned with a 32” TV, and Tom just happened to have packed an antenna. First, though, Carie masterminded a breakfast, and we all pitched into: eggs, bacon, hash, ham, hashbrowns, . . can you see it?
After breakfast preparations started for the game. A folding table was backed up to the shade cast by the biggest Airstream (Lou/Larry) and what had been used as a windscreen for the turkey-cooking the day before was now used as a sunscreen for the TV. Chairs were set up just outside in the warming sun and tables (and my ironing board buffet) held all kinds of foods and snacks: ham sandwiches, chicken crock-pot chili, chicken wings, and a delivered pizza!
The Buckeys didn't make it easy on us . . . we had to "wait for it" and sit through several Michigan scores. When the momentum finally got going, we got out of our chairs for an O H I O and from then on the game picked up.
The end of the game was the signal of the end of a great weekend, and the campsites were slowly dismantled. There was an evening campfire, and then a final morning campfire for coffee, and goodbyes all the way around. As we left the sun was coming up and promising another nice day!
This is NOT a wrap-up for the season, as we plan to go to Alum Creek State Park nearly Columbus, Ohio for our annual Christmas party! Come back and see if we are able to pull that one off!
We don’t go camping any more . . . we go ‘streamin’ ! The “SIlvermine and His” is our 2016 23' Airstream, and ‘streamin’ is the name we use to describe our adventures. Stream along as we document everything from weekend trips to longer summer excursions and full-blown vacations. You know what they say: if you’re not in an Airstream – you’re just camping!
Tom & Ella Brown