Plan Q

I’m back in Massachusetts, and had a lovely stay at the Red Apple Farm courtesy of Harvest Hosts. I’m parked literally in the middle of an apple orchard. The hard cider I had with dinner at their Brew Barn last night was made from apples grown right here. It doesn’t get any more local than that. This is definitely one of the most scenic places I’ve stayed through Harvest Hosts, and the place is literally in my old stomping grounds. Who would’ve thunk?

This serenity, though, is rather dampened by being the literal calm before the storm. Just as I get my travel leading up to the track day on the 24th sorted out, Hurricane Henri plots a collision course to precisely where I’m planning to stay.

I have absolutely no desire to sit in my van through the middle of a hurricane. It’s not smart, and it’s not safe. So I came up with a Plan B. If Henri ravages eastern Connecticut, I’d go to western Massachusetts, holing up with Malcolm and Phred again 100 miles to the west. Overnight, Henri turned left, and now northeast Connecticut and western Massachusetts are going to be equally as bad.

I am most fortunate to have an ace up my sleeve: my friend Erin, who happens to be a meteorologist for one of the major airlines. We’ve been geeking out on weather stuff together for years. This time, my question was a bit more serious: where can I park and ride the storm out without being in its direct path? Basically, unless I head halfway across New York, I’m going to be in the rain.

The damaging winds, however, I can avoid. Since Henri will zig west, I’ll zag east, back to eastern New Hampshire, though not next to the coast because the coast has its own problems. It’ll be Cracker Barrel and/or Cabela’s for overnight parking, since such a thing is extremely rare in this area, but parking lots lend the best insurance against falling trees, since there aren’t any.

If I didn’t still have motorcycle tires to get mounted in Exeter, New Hampshire, I’d nope straight out of New England entirely right now. I’m pretty sure someone would buy my track day spot. As it is, though, I’ll have to play it by ear and see how it goes.

But seriously, WTF? I’m a Florida resident, far away from Florida right now partly because I don’t want to deal with hurricane season. So the powers that be decide to send a curveball straight up to New England. Maybe it’s not just New England I need to leave behind, but the entire east coast. I don’t know.

Anyway, it’ll be all over in a week. The track day will either happen or it won’t, I’ll have my bike tires, and I’ll begin my slow trudge west to arrive in Carlisle, PA two weeks later. This is certainly not a situation I want to find myself in again. I have enough warning to leave the area entirely if I need to, but the bike tires are locking me down here so I can’t go too far without them. In the future, I won’t leave things sitting around anywhere for very long unless I’m actively on my way to get them. Consider this a soon to be soggy lesson learned.

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