Today was our day for leaving New York. We’d been crazy enough to persevere and get the RV so close to the heart of Manhattan that now we had to pay the price and get it out again.
I was a few minutes behind The Chef on our trip across to the bathroom block for a shower. On my arrival at the male entrance I found the door locked for the first time, and as I didn’t know the key code number had to trudge back to the RV where it was written down. Having noted it I returned and as I reached for the handle to put the pass code in somebody on the inside opened the door to leave, politely holding the door open for me to enter. From that point on I felt today was going to be one of those days.
Once scrubbed up and fed we made the vehicle ready for the road. Before leaving the campground we had to dump our waste water as there were electricity and fresh water hookups at the pitches but not waste water disposal. That done The Chef programmed a Camping World store at Swedesboro, Noo Joysey in to the Satnav, I unwrapped some chewing gum for the anticipated fraught journey ahead, and we hit the road. Fortunately we headed in a different direction when we left the city, and what a difference that made. Apart from one minor hiccup when ‘She’ wanted us to turn left in to a road which didn’t allow left turns we were up on to the nearby Interstate in no time and from there we made steady progress out of the city. The relief I felt was enormous, I was so geared up for an hour or so’s grief that it was all an anticlimax. I looked to my left at the Manhattan skyline still not too far away and told Rosina that I still couldn’t believe we’d actually pulled it off, that we’d actually managed to take our vehicle in to New York City and get it out again.
Our journey to the Camping World store was pretty uneventful, The Chef had phoned ahead and they were prepared to check our hot water boiler and a leak on one of the kitchen sinks if we could get there about 13:00. At 13:01 we rolled in. They took a quick look and the next thing it was in the workshops. I also asked them to fit opaque plastic covers to three of our four roof vents so that we could have the luxury of having them wound open without worrying about the rain getting in, and have them open enroute for ventilation should we wish. Whilst the work was being done, we sat in their waiting area and ate our packed lunch before The Chef got her head in to a book and I wandered around the store looking at their bits and pieces. I bought a detailed map of Philadelphia and a 30amp to 20amp conversion plug after our experience back at Hamlin Beach State Park.
The RV was ready around 15:00 though the plumber wasn’t available to sort out the leak, we thanked them very much for accommodating us at such short notice, and retired to the vehicle. Firstly, I raided my toolbox for some clear mastic and fixed the leaking myself, I then just needed a little thinners to remove the excess goo. Secondly, we had to formulate a cunning plan for our accommodation tonight. Our problem being that there are no campgrounds in the Philadelphia area, the closest is 10 miles from the city and campers without tow cars are required to get a cab or drive their RV’s 13 miles to the nearest railroad station for a ride in to the city which isn’t very helpful.
Having studied the detailed map of Philadelphia we narrowed our options down to two. The first was to drive in to the city and park up at a Wal-Mart store on South Columbus Blvd though we couldn’t be sure we could leave the RV in their car park tomorrow whilst we took ourselves off sightseeing, the second, following a chat with a helpful member of staff at the Camping World store, was to use the Woodcrest railway station to park up and travel in to the city. This would mean us having to find somewhere to park and sleep overnight and so we selected a 'Home Store' branch not too far from the station where we’d try our luck. On arrival at the store we popped in, bought some acetone to clean up the DIY job on the sink and enquired at the checkout about parking overnight. The customer behind us in the queue who, overhearing our conversation was very helpful and between him and the lady on the till concluded that we wouldn’t be hassled if we parked the RV in the huge railway station car park overnight and caught the train in to the city in the morning. So that’s where we are now. We’ve just tried to watch the live broadcast between the two prospective Vice Presidents on TV running the generator for the power, but eventually concluding that the poor signal we were receiving didn’t warrant running the generator for two whole hours, so off it went.
LOCATION TONIGHT: Woodcrest Rail Station, Cherry Hill, N.J (GPS: N39.868759 W75.012673)