We made it to Taunton, MA safely this year (last year was the road trip from hell) and arrived around 5 am on Thursday, Aug. 21st. It was still dark out. Our crew consisted of myself, hubby, college boy and middle school boy. Around 5:30 a group of carowners arrived as scheduled at the boat ramp on Lake Sabbatia for our debut on Good Morning, America.
The satellite truck and crew were already there. The lake was gor-jush that morning, just as smooth as silk. Here's the pontoon boat that the cameraman would later film from.
It was great fun to watch the TV crew set-up. I'm not sure why they wanted us there at 5:30 when they didn't air until 7 am, but it was entertaining none-the-less. Sam Champion showed up a little later. I hadn't watched GMA since Spencer Christian was the weatherman (yes, I know that was eons ago), so I had no idea what Sam Champion looked like. But I knew the second I saw him; he had the hair!
Watching him prepare for the broadcast was interesting. He had his little earpiece in, and stood there studying some papers, probably weather reports from around the nation. Then, out of the blue, he would start laughing or say some random comment, like, "Strawberrry Rice Krispies," and nod. I wanted to hear the other side of that conversation!
As it became lighter out, people stopped, attracted by the satellite truck and armada of amphicars. I heard several comments, "I'm going to be late for work," and "I was suppose to be there an hour ago."
A minute before air time, the producer, Darcy, would holler out for everyone to be quiet on the set and we all held our breath. And held our breath. And held our breath. Apparently we were waiting for the news to be read, then Sam jumped in with a ten second forecast. I was amazed at the amount of information he could rattle of in so little time. And that he could remember it all! There may have been a tele-prompter there, but I didn't see one. Even if there was, he didn't have time to look at it.
After the 7:30 report, we lined our cars up—12 in all—to get ready for our splash-in at 8 am.
During that time, Darcy had us surround one car and practice our group wave. Dorky, but fun. You can see a quick clip of that here.
I don't have a photo of the splash-in because I was obviously in the car. If I had one, you would see a large spray of water in front of the car, and water sloshing over the back onto my lap. This is not what other back seat passengers endured, only me!
After we splashed in, we drove around for a bit. Here's a great shot showing all four of the original colors the amphicars were sold in—mint green in the back, ivory, lagoon blue, and red.
Here's our boy Sam taking Ron Green's (International Amphicar Owners Club President) navy car for a test drive. He did okay, but really, he just went in circles.
After the shoot was over, we all drove around for a bit longer. Here were two of the best passengers of the day. Not the adults sitting up in front, but the two dogs sitting in the back seat. They were so good, you'd swear they were statues.
Then the real fun began!
Unfortunately, Lake Sabbatia has some type of weed growing in its waters. They wind around the props and make it hard to turn. Sometimes we drive out and the front bumper looks like a mustache, there are so many. We definitely remove those before we head north to New Hampshire. We don't want those growing around here.
By 9:30, we were on the road looking for some breakfast. Stopped at McDonald's and some people there recognized us from the show!
Have you read this far? Here's a clip from Good Morning America. Right after you hear Sam say, "They really do look like little cars out there," you will see us in our car. I am in the back seat (you can miss the white hair), middle school boy is next to me. Hubby is driving and college boy is co-captain. I'm sorry, I couldn't figure out how to imbed it the blog post. (Anyone?)
But I'm a fan of Sam's now. The perfect hair and teeth belie the fact that he is warm and generous. Was it worth getting up at 1:30 am to drive there? You bet.