Monday, October 12, 2015

At Trails End

The Sunday before Columbus Day turned out to be perfect weather for us to complete the Whispering Giants Grant Tour in one 312 mile loop from NH, to RI, back up to Plymouth MA and home again. The tour has been quite the education. First, in learning about Peter Wolf Toth and his lifelong dedication to sculpting American Indians, to appreciation of the areas in which they are found. As for my claim that the tour is complete, it is as far as chasing statues. I may still have an opportunity for 10 more points if the weather holds out through October. If I can get a photo of the Massachusetts state flag in full furl, that is good for bonus points. It was surprising that we could not find one in our travels through Massachusetts yesterday. This was despite stopping at numerous schools and local government buildings and police stations. We found the American flag, the POW flag, and the Minuteman flag. No state flag. I don’t live too far from the northern Massachusetts state line, so a quick trip on another fine weekend just might do it. I have until October 31st, which is the close of the contest.

Why spend so much time joining such contests? Well, for me, it’s an excuse to ride someplace, anyplace I haven’t been before. Or as in the case of Plymouth, a place I have been to, but never knew what I was looking at. I enjoy any adventure that has an historical significance too. On some of our rides, we wrapped other adventures into the mix. The statues in Florida were part of my milestone birthday adventure and the Daytona Beach Rally in March. In May we went to see our new grandson, and took a side ride to Bar Harbor for statue # 46. On the trip to Laconia, the adventure was in getting home on the canvas that started showing on my rear tire. In Burlington, a place I have been to numerous times, it was my first visit to Battery Park; a gorgeous setting along Lake Champlain. Dunkirk, Sharon and Williamsport were part of a July 4th four day odyssey. We learned to trust the GPS, for when it told us to get off the highway and then back on, it was because the statue was at the east bound welcome center. It wasn’t a total waste of time. We did get a nice little ride through the neighboring towns in Ohio, and we didn’t argue with the GPS when it did the same to us in Springfield MA. This one we found without too much looping around the area.

Our one big disappointment was in Williamsport PA, when we discovered that the Giant there had been removed by the town fathers only two weeks before our arrival. A kind woman in the park told us of the uproar and many newspaper articles that ensued because town folk were not forewarned. Nor do the town fathers plan on restoring and reinstalling it at a later date which raised their ire further.

While in Rhode Island (a beautiful state by the way), we thought about two of our friends that live here, yet no time to visit. Why is life always so “on a schedule” that we don’t have time to stop and smell the roses? (Sigh) So on we went to Plymouth MA, were we did make time in our schedule to see our oldest daughter, her husband, and our two grandchildren. For me, it was heartwarming to see those two little ones, as much as they seemed thrilled to see us. Is there any better way to end a tour than that?

Enjoy the slide show below:

Patnwilton's Whispering Giants Grand Tour 2015 album on Photobucket

List of Whispering Giants we’ve visited:

#44 Fort Lauderdale FL. (no name)
#10 Punta Gorda, FL, Calostimucu
#23 Charleston SC, Landing Brave
# 46 Bar Harbor, Maine, Glooscap
# 48 Laconia, New Hampshire, Keewakwa Abenaki Keenahbeh
#47 Battery Park Burlington VT. Chief Grey Lock
# 7 Dunkirk, New York, Ong-Gwe-Ohn-Weh
#6 Sharon PA (no name)
#65 Williamsport, Pennsylvania, Chief Woapalanee
#49 Springfield, Massachusetts. Omiskanoagwiak
#42 Narragansett, Rhode Island, Enishkeetompauog
#45 Plymouth, Massachusetts, Enisketomp.