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Saratog Springs [Sep. 29th, 2011|01:20 pm]
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Autumn Moon was a great campground, and just what we needed after the hustle and bustle of the last few weeks of August and the beginning of September. Almost empty this late in the year, it was very serene, and we had blue skies and pleasant temperatures to boot. Sites were good-sized and the people were friendly. The only knock was that the Verizon cellular service was poor to none. Yet one more reason to get a cell booster.

We find parks like this all over the country, beautiful parks we’d love to stay at, but with limited cell phone service. We could work with limited, if we had a booster. Unfortunately with the current 4G expansion we’re holding off on buying one. The most expensive component of a cell booster for us is the amplifier, and those only support 3G. I don’t want to buy a setup only to have to spend another $$$ in a year to upgrade it. Irritatingly enough, before I posted this I found that they are now making a 4G booster. Which only supports 4G, and will not enhance anything else. Hmm. I am not in favor of having to buy TWO expensive components to get the full range of amplification I need. Still waiting; perhaps we will simply buy the 3G version – when we’re in 4G territory the aircard rarely needs boosting.

We drove into Saratoga Springs on the weekend and enjoyed seeing the Saratoga Springs History Museum, housed in a former casino. To quote the museum website: “We have made the Canfield Casino our home since 1911. This beautiful 1870 gambling casino, owned by the City of Saratoga Springs, is on the National Register of Historic Places. While the building was originally intended for gambling and elegant dining, reformers closed it in 1907.” (and near as we can tell, the city commandeered it immediately thereafter.) There’s a pretty old-fashioned carousel in the small park there, too. We walked the grounds of Saratoga Spa park, but passed on taking the waters as the spa itself has been modernized considerably.

We also went up to the local apple farm and splurged on fudge and cider and jams and even some apples before heading to Foxboro for J's training class; after the soothing week in the piney woods it was off to Normandy Farms Campground, one of those fancy resort campgrounds we only stay in when J’s on expenses or we’re on vacation. They gave us a site right next to the bathhouse, which was great for catching up on the laundry; I could watch the dryer spin from the living room. And the campground wasn’t so crowded that we were affected by the bathhouse foot traffic, though I did make sure to ask for a more secluded site when I made the reservations for J’s next training class in early October. Normandy Farms is very pretty; they do a nice job with subtle landscaping, keeping as many trees as possible. Among other things, they set the campfire rings next to boulders at the edge of each site, sheltering the fire from passers-by and giving a woodsy feel to what is after all a fairly high density park.