I'm sitting in a Dunkin Donuts in Rutland, Vermont. I'm charging my phone and mp3 player and killing time. I want to camp but the weather reports haven't been good...but it hasn't been stormy. I think if the weather looks good, I'm going to camp tomorrow night somewhere in Vermont. It's a beautiful state, I'd hate to dart through it. I'm meeting Caroline ... oh I already mentioned that. But yeah, I have a few days to spend in the area. After Toronto, I'm looking forward to doing some more long distance driving. Listening to stuff, covering ground. I'm getting tired. I don't like being on other people's schedules, though of course I respect their time. I'm the guest.
Okay so after Plymouth, I continued south to Manchester, where I oogled books in a used book store. Except the books I really want (Edan Lepucki's California, Jeff Vandermeer's Annihilation, Jojo Moyes' Me Before You) are all brand new and not second hand...yet. But cheaper on my Kindle. But I have other books to read already! The Goldfinch! N0S4A2! Biographies! I'll just add them to the Christmas ISBN list...
Okay where was I? Yeah I went to Manchester. Nothing really made me want to stick around, so I drove to Lebanon, where Dartmouth is. I dried some of my wet camping stuff at a 24/7 laundromat. A little girl gave me one of her Skittles that she got from the crank machine. One of her precious Skittles! She was only allowed a quarters worth and she gave me one with no prompting. I was originally going to sleep in the Walmart parking lot in Dartmouth but they had a no loitering sign and it was a smaller one, so it didn't seem as open as other, larger ones. So I continued into Vermont! 33rd state! I grabbed some brochures from the visitor's center and continued on to the Walmart near Montpelier and slept there. I went in in the morning to use the bathroom, but this lady was like "what are you doing? can I help you?" turns out they weren't open! Well then why was their door open? She was grumpy but the other employees weren't fussed. So I drove on into Montpelier, and used the bathroom in the City Center building and changed and sat in the little coffee shop and worked on my journal and woke slowly up.
Montpelier is so cute! Just a few streets of cute shops. Not a whole bunch of goings ons, but it is tucked in a nice bunch of green mountains. And it does have a cute little movie theater. My kind of little town! I surveyed the local books shops. Walked about. Then got in my car and went to the maple farm nearby. I tried all the maple syrups. 100% pure good shit, aww yeah. And the maple creme. I didn't buy anything to take home, because home is my car for the next two months or so...I've done a pretty good job of not buying souvenirs! I have a shirt from the Museum of Osteology, a bunch of crushed pennies, a Dunkin Donuts mug from Florida...yeah. And a few other odds and ends. The main thing are the stickers and those are going on my cooler.
And the memories.
After the maple farm and the maple creemee (sort of a soft serve) I continued North about 30 minutes to the Ben & Jerry's Factory. It was a lovely compound. Well painted and decorated. They had food, a tie dye stand, and cut outs to stick your head through. Cut outs are sad when you are by yourself because you have no one to take your picture...or no one to take your picture with.
I took the tour. Only four bucks! Though the tour is just a video, an overhead view of the production plant (which is relatively small scale, I think this is just a smaller batch one to show tourists), BUT you get to try an ice cream flavor at the end that is exclusive to the Waterbury location. This one was strawberry ice cream with white chocolate and a fudge swirl. Delicious! I didn't have any more ice cream after that because dang, a creemee and a sample size! That's already a lot for one day.
It was starting to rain. I drove towards Burlington and stopped at the rest stop and ate a bagel and tried to think of what to do. I continued on to Burlington. I saw the World's Tallest Filing Cabinet (it's pretty tall, but it's just a bunch of cabinets welded together, but I also guess any taller and the structure would break). I swung by the Vermont Teddy Bear Factory and got a crushed penny and a picture of the VERY CREEPY teddy bear made of hay that they have there. It's all falling apart and...very creepy looking. I got my oil changed. I ended up in the college area of town. It's amazing how readily obvious those sections of cities become. Flyers for concerts, more mixed crowds of people, gutter punks, upscale trendy coffee places, more little restaurants.
I headed south on 7 to Rutland. Beautiful drive through more rolling hills. I arrived at the Dunkin Donuts. Ray, a customer, gave me some camping tips. There is a Walmart nearby, so I'm off to there. It is raining. Hopefully the weather is better tomorrow.