Category Archives: Thompson Lake


When we bought our motorhome in December 2012, we had no thoughts of going full-time in it. Our intention was to use it to visit friends and family. In January we planned to vacation in upstate New York to attend the Lake Placid Ironman event and visit Donna’s family and friends. That’s what we’ve been doing since we left Michigan.

As I’ve said many times, plans have a way of changing. We  decided to move up my early retirement date and hit the road full time in our motorhome. We have a plan that will take us through the end of the year. Like most first-year full-timers, we will spend too much time and money traveling in the next couple of months.

Yesterday we had a friends and family day. Donna’s dad, Duke Connor, came to our campsite at Thompson’s Lake and picked us up a little after 1pm. We drove to his place in Quaker Street. On the way we stopped at a market in Delanson and picked up 200 Rhode Island littleneck clams that he had ordered.

When we arrived at his house, Donna’s friend from her college days, Lynne, was waiting out front. On the deck in back we found her mother, Lorraine, her aunt Margaret, her brother Mark and his wife and daughter, Miriam and Michelle.

Lynn, Donna and Mark

Lynne, Donna and Mark

I did what I do best – that is, I sat back, relaxed and drank beer while Duke and Mark got the charcoal grill lit. There was a spread of hors d’oeuvres on the table. We snacked and talked. In due time, Mark and Duke had the clams steaming on the grill. More just picked local corn on the cob was cooking in the kitchen.

Duke and Lorraine Connor

Duke and Lorraine Connor

I ate a dozen clams; they were delicious. I was a lightweight compared to Donna and Michelle. At last count Michelle was downing her 58th clam. Lynne drove us back to our site around 5:30pm. Donna gave her a tour of the coach and we visited for a while. Donna and Lynne met in England when they were foreign exchange students in college.

After Lynne left, we had more visitors. Donna’s friend, Joan, and her husband Art came out to see us. Donna and Joan worked together when they were in their 20s. We sat and talked for a couple of hours. Art is a chef so the conversation wasn’t all about reminiscing old times. Donna loves to cook and I like eating so we talked a lot about food. Art shared some interesting ideas including plans for cooking pumpkin leaves. Although they live nearby, Art hadn’t been to Thompson’s Lake before. I think he’ll be back today with his son to drown worms and maybe catch a fish or two.

Today marks the end of our planned “vacation.” From now on, we are really full timing. The vacation plan took us to the northeast. Now we will start to head west. We have a time schedule to meet in the next couple of months before we’ll be able to really settle in a place and live the full-time RV lifestyle as we should.

Our next destination is Minneapolis. I hope to be there by the end of the week. Donna will fly from Minneapolis to New York city for a media tour job. Donna does spokesperson work in addition to her work as an author. She also has family and friends in Minnesota that we hope to connect with. I’ll hang out near Minneapolis while she goes to New York for a couple of days.

From there we will go to South Dakota to establish our domicile. I’ll write about the reasons for choosing South Dakota in another post. Eventually we’ll end up in San Diego in time for my oldest daughter, Alana’s, wedding on September 19th.

With the road schedule ahead, I don’t know if I’ll be able to update the blog daily, but I’ll try. Time to pack up and head west!

Thompson’s Lake

I’m having a little trouble remembering what day of the week it is. I think this is a good thing. My days are no longer ruled by Microsoft Outlook and meetings on the calendar.  Yesterday was Friday, I woke up around 8am. It was a move day so I had to get things done.

Donna packed up the interior while I took care of things outside. I dumped and flushed the holding tanks and we were ready to roll at 11:45am – a little later than I expected. The drive was uneventful except for a couple of traffic tie ups. The last 4 or 5 miles on Rt 156 were steep climbs. The road was narrow and the going was slow.

On the way we stopped at Hannafords supermarket for a few items. Donna bought a few groceries and I bought beer. Donna knew the store and assured me of a large parking lot that I could easily maneuver the coach and trailer in. I love it when she’s right.

Before we left Lake George, we off loaded an upholstered rocking chair and nightstand from the trailer. We hauled these from Michigan to give to Donna’s brother, Mark. They are family keepsakes from Donna’s grandmother. I packed them as carefully as I could considering the trailer was over loaded with stuff. I wrapped both items in furniture blankets, but Donna said there were some slight dings on the chair.

We checked in at Thompson’s Lake State Park and were directed to site 15. I thought I would have to drop the trailer as they said 40′ was their maximum length. When I saw the site I could tell we had more than 40′, so I backed the trailer in and fit our whole rig easily. Coach and trailer combined are about 50′ long. We haven’t dropped the trailer since leaving Michigan 11 days ago.

After I positioned our rig, I got out to check out the hook ups. The Reserve America site said we were reserving a site with 30 amp electricity and fresh water. I found neither in our site. I walked around and looked at a couple of other sites and didn’t see any hook ups. Donna phoned the office and was told there are no hook ups in the park, no electricity except for the public restrooms and no water other than a couple of faucets.

This was pretty disappointing for me. I left lake George with less than half a tank of fresh water – about 25 gallons. I would have filled up if I knew we were dry camping for the next few days. I guess I’m sugar coating it when I say disappointing, I was mad as hell. Donna had her usual calming influence though and we agreed it was just a small bump in the road. It gives us a chance to practice water conservation. No big thing.

The park is full with mostly families camping. Adjacent to our site is a basketball court and a volleyball net. I wondered how noisy it would be. There were kids and young adults playing, and other than a few people using our site as a shortcut to the courts it wasn’t a problem. Cutting through someone’s campsite is poor etiquette though, right?

Donna’s mother, Lorraine, drove out here for a visit. Donna’s parents live about 12 miles away from the park. Lorraine stayed for dinner. I grilled curried shrimp and corn on the cob. Donna and Lorraine took a walk down to the beach area. When they returned. they told me I had to have a look at what’s going on a few sites down from ours. At that site there were a few cars. Apparently the campers had visitors. A woman driving a Volvo pulled in to park there and didn’t realize there was a ditch between the road and campsite. She pulled in next to a car parked at the site entrance and drove right into the ditch! When I walked by there were 7 or 8 people standing around the car, arms crossed and scratching their chins looking at the front wheels dangling over the ditch. Later I saw the car had been extricated.

Today we’ll go visit Donna’s parents. Her brother, Mark and family will also be  there.

Thompson's Lake

Thompson’s Lake