Good Times and Bad in the Keystone State (June 12 – 25, 2022)

On Sunday, June 12th, we drove 61 miles to Gordonville, PA, where we spent six nights at Country Acres Campground.  We had been looking forward to exploring the Amish communities in Lancaster County and visiting some of the many restaurants, shops and bakeries.  Gordonville was located between the towns of Paradise and Bird-in-Hand. 

On Monday, we drove into Lancaster.  We had lunch at Cava, a Mediterranean fast-casual restaurant.  Jan had the Crispy Falafel and Phil had the Spicy Lamb Meatball Pita.  We then located Wheatland, the home of President James Buchanan, but opted not to do the tour.  Instead, we visited Gish’s Furniture and spent an hour looking at high-quality Amish furniture.  All the furniture was solidly constructed, using only hardwoods.  There were many beautiful pieces, but the prices were quite high.  After doing our grocery shopping, we returned to the campground and spotted two of our friends from our 2018 Alaskan caravan, Ken and Cathy Bentz, arriving.  After they got set up, Ken and Cathy dropped by and we had a nice time getting caught up on each other’s lives.

On Tuesday, we drove with the Bentz’s to the Sight & Sound Theater in nearby Ronks, PA for a musical stage production, telling the Biblical story of David.  Upon our arrival, we met up with Tom and Trish Lehr, also from the Alaskan trip.  The Sight & Sound Theater was unlike any we had ever seen.  The center stage itself was enormous, with sets towering up to 40 feet high (including a 22’ Goliath), but, in addition, stages on both sides made us feel like we were in the middle of the action.  Adding to this feeling were the many live animals (goats, sheep, horses, camels and birds) who raced down the aisles during the show.  The production also made extensive use of special effects to add to the performance by the 50-person cast.

After the show, we drove to the Fireside Tavern, where we had dinner with the Bentz’s and Lehrs and celebrated Phil’s 68th birthday.  After dinner, we returned to our rig and enjoyed some birthday blueberry pie and ice cream.

Unfortunately, later Tuesday evening, Phil developed a high fever and various other symptoms.  When the fever continued through the night, we headed to Urgent Care on Wednesday morning.  It was quickly confirmed that Phil tested positive for Covid.  The Urgent Care was unable to prescribe anything and advised Phil to contact his PCP.  Phil’s doctor was unavailable on Wednesday but Phil was able to set up a telemedicine appointment for Thursday at noon.  Following the Thursday appointment, Phil’s PCP issued a prescription for Paxlovid.  However, due to communication issues between the doctor’s office and the Walgreen’s in Lancaster, it took several phone calls and four hours to get the prescription filled. 

In the meantime, Jan became very ill.  After testing positive, using at-home test kits, for both Covid and a UTI, Jan headed to Urgent Care on Friday.  Once again, Urgent Care could not prescribe anything for Covid but Jan was able to get an antibiotic for the UTI.  Unfortunately, Jan’s PCP was unavailable so she was never able to get anything prescribed for Covid.

On Saturday, June 18th, it was time was us to leave Lancaster County and drive to our new location.  Since neither of us were really feeling well, Phil tried to extend our stay.  However, given that it was a Saturday at a popular location, we were not surprised that no extension was available.  We were very disappointed to leave the area, having only experienced trips to Urgent Care and Walgreens over the previous three days.  We had scheduled a Amish farmland tour for Thursday but had to miss that. 

We managed to make the 216-mile drive to New Stanton, PA (35 miles SW of Pittsburgh) without incident.  We checked-in at Fox Den Acres Campground for our weeklong stay.  We were glad we wouldn’t have to go anywhere for a while.  Our site was a 120’-long pull-through site so we had plenty of room. 

We didn’t do much for the rest of the weekend, other than watching the US Open golf tournament.  By Monday morning, we had both gone 24 hours fever-free, making us no longer contagious for Covid.  However, still feeling fatigued from the ordeal, we continued to take it easy.

On Tuesday, we felt well enough to drive to Pittsburgh’s PNC Park to watch the Chicago Cubs take on the Pittsburgh Pirates.  We had great seats, about 14 rows away from the field.  Phil wore his Chicago Cubs 2016 World Series Championship t-shirt but, alas, these are not the 2016 Cubs.  The Cubs were losing 5-0 after three innings and ended up losing 7-1.

On Thursday, we returned to PNC Park for an afternoon game.  We had great seats, directly behind home plate.  However, after sitting in the hot sun for a couple of innings, we moved back to find some shade.  Unlike games at Wrigley Field, there were plenty of empty seats, so that was no problem.  After giving up two homeruns, committing four errors and stranding four runners at third base, the Cubs were losing 6-2 at the end of the 7th inning.  However, the Cubs then scored five runs in the 8th to take the lead.  Unfortunately, the Pirates’ next batter hit the first pitch over the centerfield wall to tie the game.  After the Cubs’ runner was thrown out at the plate in the top of the 10th, the Pirates scored to win, 8-7.

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