Thursday, September 16, 2010


Furnace stack at Pine Grove
Today old PHMC friend Edie and I drove the Box to Pine Grove Furnace State Park, south of Carlisle, to scope out the surroundings in preparation for a picnic we're having for several families in the International Fellows Program at the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle. Edie and I and our spouses are in the community sponsorship program, designed to help foreign military officers and their families to adjust to and enjoy their year-long stay in the U.S. There will be about 20 of us there before winter hibernation starts.

The park is eight miles from I-81, through some beautiful countryside. We stopped at the park's visitor center for information, then drove down the road and saw the old furnace stack (a rather forelorn remnant of a once grand iron plantation). We also saw the paymaster's office and the ironmaster's mansion. We checked out one of the pavilions and then found a second one further off the beaten track. There were very modern, er, facilities, which everyone will appreciate.

Back on the main road, we found a second area next to Laurel Lake and decided that eating in one area and then visiting the other would be fun. We could visit the general store and the Appalachian Trail Museum, a new addition to the park. I think both kids and adults will enjoy the day.

South Korea and Japan meet at Ollie's
After lunch, I dropped Edie off and then made a stop at Ollie's "Good Stuff Cheap" to look for table cloths and some fun things for the kids to do. Bubble stuff, anyone? The box had a nice chat with a KIA Soul while I did the shopping.

Next, I crossed the mighty Susquehanna and exited at Progress Avenue, where I continued up the hill to the AAA office. There I picked up tourism materials on Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey. I will be making a display on these three states for a gathering of officers' spouses next month, in order to introduce them to the U.S. I'll also be making something representative of Pennsylvania to eat. What do you think -- shoofly cake and pierogies in a slow cooker? Well, the pierogies will be in the slow cooker, not the cake.

St. Margaret Mary Church
Just down the road from the AAA office is the new St. Margaret Mary Church. We had passed the old one on the Rt. 22 by-pass about a million times, so I wanted to take a peek at the new one.

Unfortunately, like most churches, it was locked for fear of the weirdos who enjoy wrecking nice things. It's quite a good-looking building on the outside.

Finally, I continued out Linglestown Road, circled around the construction, and made a little movie so you could all see the progress being made in the village. The street has been lowered to accommodate curbs, and new concrete sidewalks, colored and stamped to look like brick, were laid. I hope some trees are to be added, too. Our old house is the green one on the left, just past the old post office building (0:18 - 0:23). I have it on good authority that once the project is done, the house will be painted and readied for sale. Who knows, maybe our daughter Sarah will come home and buy it. She always loved that place!

 All of this is gone, except for the stack!

A ten-plate stove made at Pine Grove. I would kill
to have one of these -- but from Cornwall.

Ollie keeps an eye on the Box for me.

The AAA office was full of great stuff for travelers.

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