Hobbit's whirlwind east coast tour

Discussion in 'Local Clubs, Events, and Road Trips' started by hobbit, Nov 14, 2005.

  1. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    It is my long-standing tradition to visit my parents around
    the holidays. At this point they live near-ish the Tampa
    FL area, and now that my first round of mods on the Prius
    is nicely buttoned up and ready for winter, that the right
    way to do the journey is to avoid the TSA cavity-searches
    and make it a ROAD TRIP!
    .
    So the idea here is a leisurely wander down the East Coast,
    possibly starting around 8-Dec and spending that following
    weekend in Philly at a convention, and then continuing to
    head south. I would love to meet up with some of my newfound
    Prius buddies on the way, sometime during that week between
    12-Dec and 16-Dec, to get together, geek about mods, compare
    notes, chat about energy issues in general, consume food and
    drink, or what have you. This may be a nice excuse for us
    to spawn a series of mini-gatherings along the way, and I'm
    willing to wander across a fairly wide swath of territory to
    reach where people are. For instance, I wouldn't mind finally
    seeing places like the Blue Ridge parkway, if it's still open
    at that time of year, or try optimizing my driving technique
    in those fabled West Virginia mountains. The trip can become
    a nice mix of higher-mileage, scenic secondary roads and
    straight shots down 95 or other interstates.
    .
    I'm not particularly seeking accomodations from people, just
    brief visits, gatherings, tours, or whatever to associate a few
    faces and vehicles with the names I see go by on my screen!
    This is as much of an event as y'all want to make it -- I'm
    doing the trip anyways, and am willing to change course for
    social entertainment and be in no tearing hurry to get there.
    The return trip, sometime after xmas, is also a possibility
    although I'll probably be feeling a little more pressure to
    get back up north by then.
    .
    Your choice on how to respond. I am preferentially reached
    as "hobbit" at my home domain avian.org, or if that bounces
    due to spam filters try techno-fandom.org or PM me here. Or
    just begin coordinating things in the forum...
    .
    _H*
     
  2. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    [bump!]
    .
    Plans are solidifying somewhat. The convention in Philadelphia is
    definite, which would put us [yes, two people] on the road south /
    west from there on the afternoon of Sunday 11-Dec and aimed in the
    general direction of Front Royal VA and Skyline Drive. What happens
    from there depends on people, weather, time, and various other
    factors and it's all fairly loose and unhurried.
    .
    Besides various mountains, if there are opportunities for gatherings
    or onesey-twosey meetings and mod-geeking anywhere between there and
    Florida, I'd love to hear about it!
    .
    _H*
     
  3. ltu1542hvy

    ltu1542hvy New Member

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    I second what Galaxee said. Please let us know when you will be in the Triangle (Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill area of North Carolina) and we will be glad to welcome you to a special meeting of our club.

    - Bill
     
  4. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    It's been pretty fun so far. We've landed, somewhat by chance, in
    the little nowheresville of Grundy VA, near the Kentucky border.
    Today was spent tooling around lots of backroads, including an
    attempt at getting up one of the icier segments of the Blue Ridge
    parkway but eventually being turned back by a slick sheet upon which
    it was completely impossible to move forward/upward and rather
    tricky to back down without the front end swinging around into the
    ditch. We got out of there okay and went over many lower mountains.
    Really brings home why some people want extended battery packs to
    capture those long hills' worth of regen. Averaging about 53 mpg
    in mixed interstate and 45-55 mph secondary highways, mostly, with
    ambient temps around 25 - 40 F.
    .
    Met up with a few folks so far, and have one more waypoint with
    someone in Chattanooga tomorrow before the long final bust for
    South Florida on Thursday.
    .
    _H*
     
  5. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    Tiny update: made it to FL on the 16th, and in various running
    around locally I spotted *no* other Priuses for several days and
    then all of a sudden over the last day and a half, there were
    two classics and 3 or 4 3rd-gens running around. Weird.
    .
    So here I am in the Venice FL area, and woefully behind on PC.
    Still up for meetups and mod-comparisons. The funniest thing today
    was hearing my dad reel off a bunch of Prius info to someone *else*
    over dinner, demonstrating that he had absorbed *my* ranting...
    .
    _H*
     
  6. galaxee

    galaxee mostly benevolent

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    hey hobbit,

    any idea what date you'll be in the triangle area yet? i'm trying to pull together a local meeting around that time.

    -g
     
  7. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    My trip back will begin sometime after the 25th, and I expect will
    be somewhat governed by weather and how many waypoints will pop up
    between here and there. I would say that from the 28th on would be
    a safe bet, or is that too late in the month? I wanna be back home
    before new years, so it would be sometime that last week in Dec..
    .
    _H*
     
  8. galaxee

    galaxee mostly benevolent

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    i could set something up for say thursday evening and we could have dinner instead of lunch... i know at least i will be working that week.

    i'll get on that. :)
     
  9. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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  10. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    Okie dokie, starting to check the weather for next week. Looks
    pretty nice all the way up to Thursday, in fact, all the way north.
    Turns out I'm skipping a leg through Myrtle Beach, so I could likely
    reach the RTP area that much sooner. That's about 11 hours from
    where I am at best route/speed, i.e. up 95 [ick]. I've still got
    this yen to maybe drop in on Coastal Dave and noodle some secondary
    roads to avoid bits of 95, so it might be prudent to split that into
    2 days and arrange to arrive in RTP some midweek-ish late afternoon.
    .
    So what day would be best for the RTP folks? I'm reasonably flexible
    down here but I'd rather stick around over Monday. I would hazard
    a guess at depart here Wed. morning, arrive RTP Thurs. evening, but
    that could certainly shift a day either way.
    .
    _H*
     
  11. galaxee

    galaxee mostly benevolent

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    how'd you feel about sitting down thursday at Chili's or something for dinner at, say 7? too early? i can always change things around.
     
  12. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    That would work fine... all I'd need is to know where to go [addr,
    lat/long coordinates, whatever] and maybe a contact number or two
    [in case I meet impediments] that you could PM me or email to my
    home addr..
    .
    Thanks for putting up with my randomness; hopefully we can pull
    together a good one and I might have a few nice li'l xmas presents
    to hand out...
    .
    _H*
     
  13. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    So, on my way out of FL I dropped in on Coastal Dave. Or tried
    to. Found the house easily enough; rather than spew details I'll
    just point out that anyone can look up acei.us themselves and
    consult a map. There was a silver Classic in the driveway along
    with an odd-looking angular golf-cartish thing that's probably
    some EV experiment, so I figured it was the right place. So I
    grabbed my envelope full of doc and went up and rang, and a
    woman answered the door. Perhaps it was Kelly, do not know...
    .
    Me: hi! I'm here to see if Coastal Dave wanted to chat about
    cars and related stuff?
    .
    Her: *shrug*
    .
    Me: er ... I hope I have the right place ... I'm Hobbit from
    priusonline/priuschat/whatever, and I figured if Dave's here
    he might want to talk some tech.
    .
    Her: *shrug* [no indication if I'm even barking up the right
    tree]
    .
    Me: um ... do I have the right place? Is there a Dave here
    who does electronics for the Prius?
    .
    Her: *shrug*, with a little more of a downturned lip strongly
    implying "i really don't want to deal with you"
    .
    Me: okay, well, if I do have the right place and Dave doesn't
    want to come out then please just give him this [handing her
    the standard URL flyer] and sorry to bother you.
    .
    And I left. Left the island, left the state, and it took until
    well into Georgia to get my utter bewilderment under control.
    I was completely dumbfounded by this response. Along comes
    someone with a common interest and a genuine desire to help
    understand Dave's relationship with the community, and I get
    completely blown off without even a chance to talk about any
    of it rationally. Yeah, that's real sweet public-relations work.
    .
    Dave/Kelly, if you're reading this, please understand that my
    intentions were to simply inquire and discuss, at your listed
    place of business, and the absolute *minimum* of professional
    courtesy would have been to at least give some reason for that
    level of stonewalling. Honestly, if that's the way you have
    decided to treat a community that still occasionally tries to
    reach out to you, then I would say that your Prius days are done.
    .
    _H*
     
  14. jeepien

    jeepien Member

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    So let me get this straight: you dropped in without an appointment or so much as an advance phone call, and you're complaining that YOU were treated rudely?

    Sheesh.

    You're lucky you didn't get shot.
     
  15. maggieddd

    maggieddd Senior Member

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    why does it have to be so uptight? why can't you just drop by without an appointment? I find nothing rude with that.
     
  16. hobbit

    hobbit Senior Member

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    By your logic, every canvasser, JW, and kids selling magazines
    for school would be shot. Please give me a little credit for
    knowing how to inoffensively knock on a door and ask an honest
    question. Hell, I wasn't even asking for money.
    .
    You've been around long enough to know what the issues with this
    guy are, and that phonecalls would likely receive a similar
    response. I was trying a different tack.
    .
    _H*
     
  17. Danny

    Danny Admin/Founder
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    Damn, looks like I missed you, Hobbit. I'll be in Miami Jan 1st-4th for the Orange Bowl.
     
  18. Linda

    Linda

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    FWIW, I work at home. If someone drops by without an appointment or a phone call to let me know they are coming, I don't answer the door. I could be under deadline, I could be in my pajamas, I could be not feeling well -- the reason doesn't matter. I don't have a storefront for a reason, and working from home does not mean that you are allowed to treat my home as if it's the shopping mall.

    I wouldn't judge CoastalDave based on a *drop-by*. Dropping by without invitation/notice is rude -- those doing so take their chances on how they will be received. :) I especially would not open the door for someone who looked me up on the internet and then drove around to find me -- there are weirdos out there, and the guy knocking at my door can SAY he's Hobbit from PriusChat, and I have absolutely no way to know if that's true.

    Would you be angry if you just dropped by Toyota's Headquarters and didn't get to see someone you wanted to see? Try telling them you figured they would just want to "talk tech" with you, and see how far that gets you. :) Why would you treat Dave's business differently?

    Dave and Kelley ought to be given some slack here... dropping by unannounced over the holidays? No way... :)
     
  19. jeromep

    jeromep Member

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    I'm not sure about you, but I have never had a problem with drop-ins. I guess it is small city living. Weirdos are not in the majority, at least not yet and not on my side of town. The drop-ins that come to my door are usually friends. I didn't even get any trick-or-treaters this year, so you can see that I don't attract dropins even when it is expected.

    I've never had a problem coming to the door in my PJs. I suppose it is years of college living and group living situations which kind of conditions you to not care about stuff like that...especially when nobody else you are living around cares about things like that. I guess that is a commentary on college life. :rolleyes:
     
  20. galaxee

    galaxee mostly benevolent

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    well geez, at least some verbal communication would have been nice.

    you know, like 'sorry this is a bad time' or 'no, dave's down the street' or 'we'd rather not discuss our business' or SOMETHING other than just a funny look and a shrug.
     
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