Tom Flanders World

Writer of Fiction

Tom Week – Rehoboth to Enfield

Big bug in Rehoboth

10/2/19 – Rehoboth Beach

Road the bike to Enterprise in Rehoboth to pick up the rental car. It was hot, but the ride was much easier than last week’s hillfest.

10/3/19 to 10/6/19

Bad stress and depression. Nothing to write.

10/7/19 – Feeling Better

Today, I have words in my head and they made it all the way to my fingers. We are in Virginia.

I’ve driven in most of the states. So it is with some authority when I say that Maryland has the worst drivers in the country.

10/8/19 – Somewhere in Virginia

Two days ago we were in the North. Now everyone is saying y’all. The amount of change in so few miles is startling.

10/9/19 – Lost in VA

My sense of direction was off today. I kept making wrong turns. Not sure why.

We did eventually arrive at the correct campground. A KOA at King’s Dominion amusement park, which is closed for the season. The amusement park, not the campground.

Abigail got to meet an army of Totos. She ran at them, barking. Then got nose to nose with the bravest of the four little dogs. Then they both just kind of wandered off. She’s so viscous.

We’re finally near roads with big wide shoulders so I’m hoping for a good bike ride tomorrow.

Last night I dreamed I was in Worcester, standing on a corner wearing a shark costume. Pat drove up in Dad’s old Chevy Impala wagon and asked me what I was advertising. I didn’t know so I woke up.

Speaking of Dad, my sister Mary found a six-pack of his old favorite cheap beer, Black Label. In his memory I bought myself a six of my favorite cheap beer, Mickey’s. Yes, the one with the picture puzzles under the caps. Yee Haw!

10/10/19 – Bad Hip

It seems I hurt my hip when I tripped over the gas hose yesterday. I wasn’t able to ride my bike because it was pulling on all the wrong muscles. It didn’t hurt that much but I figured I should take it easy. Getting old sucks.

Many more people came to the campground today. Turns out the amusement park is open Friday-Sunday.

10/11/19 – Virginia Beach

We were here late last October but it is much warmer now. It’s a biker weekend so the campground is full of angry old men grasping the ghosts of their youth. Makes we want to join them.

10/12/19 – Virginia Beach Beach

I had a good bike ride this morning. Ten miles.

Then we went out to lunch and to the beach. We took Pat’s scooter. She road up and down the boardwalk while Tonya and I played in the accessible playground. Last year it was cold and we had it to ourselves. This year it was covered in kids.

10/13/19 – The last Sunday

I overheard a conversation while riding today. It seems that Columbus Day is the last day for most of Virginia Beach. Nearly everything seasonal will be shut on Tuesday.

10/14/19 – VB Squished Pennies

We ventured out today in search of squished pennies. This task has become much easier since Pat found a website that lists where the machines are and what designs they provide.

Other than that I got a pile of writing done.

10/15/19 – North Carolina

If the North Carolina Welcome Center wasn’t closed for renovations we would have gone to a different WalMart.

10/16/19 – Cotton Comes to Enfield

We are at a camp on a dinky back road outside Enfield North Carolina. Looking at the road on the map you would not, and I did not, expect much traffic. The trucks are constant, day and night. Something weird is going on around here. Unfortunately the roads are too narrow and busy for bike riding.

The local news suggests it’s the late cotton crop. Seems there aren’t enough people to handle the harvest. Something about immigrants being scared away by ICE raids.


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Tags: , | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: October 16, 2019

Tom Week – UPS heroes

UPS man

9/12/19 – UPS Hurrah

“The” UPS package came today. Will can sleep better tonight.

Did some laundry, including my cycling clothes. Pat’s prayers have been answered.

Wrote a whole bunch on what I’m now daring to call my new novel. It’s a glorious mess. So far I’m able to not self-censor so it’s going quickly. Rewrites will be extensive.

9/13/19 – Feme la Lune

A full moon on Friday the 13th. Got a lot of writing today. It will be a book. Maybe not a novel, but a collection of short stories with all the same characters.

Pat’s leg is slowly healing. We may be able to get back on the road in a few days.

9/14/19 – Blood on the Rug

Abigail has a growth between her tail and her anus. We found it by following the trail of blood she left around the RV. Took her to the vet. It’s not dangerous but we are having it removed on Monday unless the vet can’t fit her in.

Pat’s leg is part better, part worse. No fever, so that’s a good sign.

9/15/19 – Better

Pat’s leg is much better today. Hazzah!

Went for a wonderful wander on the bike. Just took roads on a whim. Much fun. I need to do more rides like that.

9/16/19 – Good day for Abigail

Went to a new vet today to arrange surgery. After several hours they looked at her and don’t think she needs surgery. Hazzah again! Now maybe I can stop worrying and get some sleep.

9/17/19 – Happy Furniture

For the first time we got to witness Ann and Jenn transforming a pile of junk into a beautiful piece of furniture. Amazing.

9/18/19 – Dented Roof

Returned the rental car and they found two little dents on the roof. No idea how they got there. Online stories suggest it’s a scam but without evidence I had to call my insurance company. Bummer.

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Tags: , | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: September 18, 2019

Tom Week – Band Nostalgia

white band in road

8/31/19 – Band Nostalgia

Met my old friend Terre tonight and we and the bartender talked about ever 80’s Boston band. It was frightening how much useless knowledge the three of us managed to Conjure up.

9/1/19 – A trailer full-time

Spent the afternoon loading furniture onto a trailer for my sister to take to the big antique flea market in Brimfield. More of the same tomorrow.

9/2/19 – Brimfield

Helped my sister carry the really heavy stuff to the antique show. Fortunately some guy bought two of the heaviest pieces before we had them all off the trailer.

Went out to a literary open mic. It started an hour late and was as pretentious as readings in San Francisco without the substance.

9/3/19 – Quiet

A quiet day. No energy. Got some laundry done. Starting to yearn for the road.

9/4/19 – Urgent Care

Pat scraped her leg on the car door the other day. It hasn’t been healing and today was much worse. We found a place close by and had the luckiest visit possible. After the talking lady took us down a few wrong turns we wound up in the empty parking lot.

We went inside and there were no other patients. A bit worrisome, but by the time Pat finished the paperwork there were six other people. Another six came in while Pat was being seen. The receptionist was telling people there would be a 90 minute wait. Yee Haw.

9/5/19 – Prep to Leave

We are off tomorrow. Going all the way to CT to dwell among the swamp yankees for the weekend. Spot on the river. I called to make a reservation and guy said since it’s past Labor Day we can just show up. Plenty of space.

9/6/19 – Swamp Yankees

We are camped on a river among the swamps of northern Connecticut. A lovely spot if the rain eases enough to enjoy it.

This morning when we were leaving Worcester I missed an item on my checklist and we pulled out of the driveway with the electrical cable still plugged in. Fortunately it pulled out of the socket no problem but the cord got caught under the wheels and was yanked off the RV. Fortunately again it was any easy fix.

9/7/19 – Lottery Cycling

A new first. I rode my bike five miles to the closest store to buy Powerball tickets. The woman working at the store was completely freaked out by me. She was pretty sure that no sane person would be cycling through the back woods of Connecticut just for lottery tickets.

9/8/19 – Tick Land

We are in Niantic, which is part of East Lyme. Yes, as in Lyme Disease. But we drove on Flanders Road to get here, so that’s cool.

9/9/19 – Bike Limits

Went for a bike ride today. The roads in Niantic are not bike friendly. The shoulders are nice and wide as long as your not on a hill, and there are A LOT of hills.

9/10/19 – Retreat

Back in Worcester. Pat’s leg is not healing right. The urgent care doctor gave her new meds and new instructions.

9/11/19 – Blackstone

Finally got around to riding the Blackstone Trail from Worcester to Millbury. Very nice but kind of hilly and a few sections of frost heaves. Did 14 miles and was sweating a lot.


danger sign

The funny thing is, I had to climb up to see what the sign said.

big old building

Big funky building that I didn’t have the time to explore.


That’s the Long Island Sound, but it wasn’t making any noise.

Police cars

I didn’t do it.

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Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: September 11, 2019

Tom Week – Maine and Stuff

The great Maine goat crossing

8/23/19 – More Maine

The trip today was a perfect example of you can’t get there from here. As the crow flies we traveled 35 miles to the southwest. By the road it was nearly 70. First we drove north to Lewiston Maine. Then south to North Windam. The North to Naples. Finally west to the campground.

8/24/19 – The Big Yellow Truck

Apparently as you go inland in Maine you move away from the tourists and towards the hard-core RVer. Half the people in the park have stopped by to stare at and ask questions about the Big Yellow Truck.

8/25/19 – Newfields

We are in a lovely park in Newfields New Hampshire. Our spot looks out over a river. We picked this park because it is the closest to a couple of my college friends. I had low expectations. There were no reviews online. When we got here there were no signs on the highway. But after a long bumpy dirt road through thick forest we emerged out to a very nice-looking park, guarded by an adorable Saint Bernard.

8/26/19 – Epic Epping

Rode my bike today along the Rockingham Recreational Trail. Not paved but smooth, packed dirt. A few rocks and some mud, but not bad. The trail took me all the way from Newfields to Star Speedway in Epping. Biking to race tracks is becoming a theme.

8/27/19 – Old Friends

Got to see my best buds from college tonight. It’s been too long. Man, are we a bunch of geeks.

8/28/19 – Back to the beginning

Our last night before returning to Worcester we are in the same park as the first night after leaving Worcester. In the same spot in the park. The northern circle is complete.

8/29/19 – Back in Whistah

Once again parked in the alley next to my sister’s place. Ah, the life of a world traveler.

8/30/19 – Early Dog

Abigail’s bowels decided it should be an early morning. Five A.M. walking the dog. Fortunately I was able to get back to sleep.


wiener mobile

This is not the Wiener Mobile I saw in California. And they didn’t have any stickers!


Not all bike paths are without their dark side.


Someone forgot their race car.

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Tags: ,, | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: August 30, 2019

Tom Week – New Hampshire and Maine

Playland, not in New Hampshire

8/16/19 – Lee New Hampshire

We are in Lee New Hampshire. The home of Lee USA Speedway. A track I’ve not been to before. I rode my bike over, just under three miles. Coming home after the race was fun. After about 50 yards of highway I turned on to the back roads and not one car passed me from either direction the whole rest of the trip.

The racing was great. A wide variety of cars with some very fast racing. As usual the sportsman race had the most yellow flags. Those are the almost pro racers who usually have more attitude than even the real pro racers. Half the cars crashed out of that one.

So much fun.

8/17/19 – The Quiet Woods

A day of very little action. Got some writing and computer chores done. Maybe tomorrow I can venture into the physical world.

8/18/19 – Saco

We came up route 1 from the New Hampshire border. Some people have too much money. The further north we got, the less yuppie it got. The Biddeford WalMart lived up to all expectations.

We are now in Saco Maine, just one mile south of the world famous full-size chocolate moose. A must see for fans of the butter cows.

Walking up to the office to check in a chipmunk ran across the path. A nearby boy yelled, “Dad, chipskunk!”

8/19/19 – OO Beach

Took a bike ride on the Eastern Trail. Nice and flat but unpaved. Took the road to the beach. Thick fog prevented any view of the ocean but Old Orchard Beach was way funky.

8/20/19 – Freeport

Today we saw Lenny the life-size chocolate moose. Things like this are the reason we roam.

Pat and I nearly had heart attacks when we got to the new RV park. That park is way out in the woods but as we arrived we discovered that they’ve cleared this huge area. The spaces are in the middle of a field. It’s 90 degrees out.

So we go to our assigned spot in the field only to find it occupied by another RV. Back in the office the woman apologized, she read the wrong line on the incoming list. She gave us a different space which was in the woods on the other side of the field. Hurray!

8/21/19 – Rain

Wonderful lazy day. Didn’t get up till eleven. Took a nap at three. Got a surprising amount of work done towards the job hunt.


sewer pipe in New Hampshire

The most complicated sewer hookup ever!


Gary the caterpillar helped me with the hoses.

old orchard beach

Rides in the fog. The ocean was hidden by the fog.

chocolate moose

Another national treasure observed. Lenny the life-sized chocolate moose.

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Tags: | Comments (0) | Author: Tom | Published: August 22, 2019


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