Saturday, April 4, 2009

A Few First Timers

This past Wednesday, Ava and I had a first. She and I met up with seven other Airstreams for a caravan to the Cherry Blossom Rally. We had played follow the leader coming home or going to an event, but it had only involved one other trailer or three of us trying to drive our rigs home as fast as we could push them. A true caravan was a first for us. We were not alone in this first timers experience, I think it was a first time for all eight trailers that gathered at Great Falls National Park in Great Falls Virginia. We had first timers to Washington, first timers with their Airstreams, and first timers to the Washington DC Unit.

Ava and I headed out very early for the park to avoid the heavy morning rush hour. By 9:30 eight trailers were there ready to see the all the major sites of Washington DC. Anna was the chase trailer so as to make sure we did not lose anyone on the trip. Rob had Sophia the Sovereign of the Road lead the way.

To see eight trailers rolling down the George Washington Parkway was a sight to behold. Amazingly many folks felt compelled to cut in between us, but quickly realized they were out of place.

Our first destination was the Marine Corps Memorial in Arlington Virginia. There is a commanding view from the memorial of the city. Right next to the Marine Corps Memorial is Arlington National Cemetery.

When I was younger, my father would bring us here to visit his friends that never made it home from Vietnam. The head stones go on for ever it seems like. Sure have been a lot of our soldiers giving their lives for our country. Seeing it is something you cannot easily forget.

Our next destination was downtown. The route Rob took us on brought us past all the major sites the tour busses take all the tourist to.

We were not the normal tour busses though. We were vintage aluminum and the sight of us drew many cameras up and lower jaws open.

I was in in awe myself most of the trip. Sitting next to me was Dale Schwamborn, better know as Pee Wee. Dale was the advanced scout for Wally Byam's 1959 caravan from Capetown South Africa to Cairo Egypt. I felt like a very lucky man to have him riding with me. I learned a great deal talking with him and feel like I was touched by royalty. Dale, if you read this, thank you so much. I am so very grateful to have spent time with you.

The cherry trees were in full bloom as we drove around the tidal basin.

We went to Mount Vernon and had a little lunch. The museum put us all together in a back parking lot. Unfortunately we did not have enough time to see the house. Maybe some other time we will come back and see it.

We were in somewhat of a race against rain and daylight to get to the rally sight.

In my next post I will tell you all about the Cherry Blossom Rally, but first I will be going on a much needed vacation to Guanajuato Mexico with my wife. See you all soon.....


bnc4k said...

Hi Frank, I wish I could have been there!!!


Anonymous said...

Safe travels amigo.
I look forward to your next installment.


Sugarfoot said...

Frank, the caravan was more fun than I could have imagined. It gave me goose bumps when we were towing in a row through the nation's capital. Your water decals rock! Thanks for all.