Jersey?! Which Exit?

After Connecticut, my next goal was New Jersey. I am really crossing the states off my list now!

It was kind of an adventure getting there. I decided to use my paper maps until I got close. Unfortunately, paper maps (at least of the AAA variety) don’t warn you about which roads not to take.

I was rolling down Sawmill Parkway in New York State, when I noticed a few people honking as they passed me. “Odd,” I thought.

Finally a guy rolled down his window and motioned for me to do the same. I did, and he told me that trailers weren’t allowed on the parkway and warned me that I should get off or I might get a ticket.

I gave him a thumbs up and resolved to get off at the next exit. BEFORE I got to the next exit, I saw a sign warning of low clearance – 8’8″. GULP! My trailer is 10’6″. I slowed down and approached cautiously. The overpass was an arch, so I moved to the center of the roadway and kept my fingers crossed. It looked a lot taller that 8’8″. Luckily, they must have been measuring at the lowest part, so I passed through without an issue – unless  you call sweaty palms an issue.

I managed to make my way to New Jersey and to the parking lot where I was going to meet my friend, Mary Ellen. We sang in a church choir together in Kalamazoo. The last time I saw her was in 2006, when I stopped off on my way to a summer in Europe.

She invited me to park in her driveway and enjoy her hospitality. She didn’t have to ask me twice. Come to think of it, maybe I asked her if I could stay. In any event, she was a marvelous hostess!

every-house-looks-better-with-an-airstream

She has a lovely home, but isn’t every house even better with an Airstream in the driveway?

deer-in-the-neighborhood

When I think of New Jersey, I think of urban sprawl. Really, though, it is a state that is less developed and more agricultural that you might think. The deer were all over. I snapped this photo right across the street from her house.

Mary Ellen went to work every day, and I spent time at home. I was having trouble getting my website and blog to work, so I spent a couple of days working on that. When she came home, her dogs were waiting eagerly for her return.

waiting-for-me-to-come-home

Halen and Fiona are the corgis and poor Bree had to wear the “cone of shame”.

mary-ellen-and-fiona

Here’s Fiona having a little “quality time” with Mary Ellen.

mary-ellens-quilt

It was a novel experience to sleep in a bed with such a lovely quilt. Mary Ellen made it, and it is in my favorite colors. I left it on the bed when I departed, just in case you are wondering.

pick-your-own-fun

During the weekend I was there, we ran a few errands and stopped by Alstede Farms to drop off some boxes from the community supported agriculture that Mary Ellen belonged to.

I was amazed by the crowds turning out for the “pick-your-own” fun.

hay-bales

We also went in and bought some of their products. I mean, we managed to get in and get a parking spot – why not?

alstede-farms-truck

It was lovely to spend time with Mary Ellen, Bree,

halen

Harlan

fiona

and Fiona!

I hope it’s not ten years before we see each other again.

Next stop: Delaware,