Friday, August 26, 2005

On the Road Again

We covered 4 states in 5 hours, which is easy to do when back east. Ah, but here I must digress into a slight rant! It sure was a lot different then a 5 hour drive in Washington state! New Jersey being (I think) the most densely populated state, driving is no piece of cake. Drivers tend to go fast, follow closely, cut in and out of lanes and be very short tempered (can you blame them?). Add to that the Garden State Parkway, where tolls must be paid every few miles. The newbie Parkway driver is faced with a bewildering choice of lanes: "Easy Pass Only"; "Token or Exact Change Only", "Cash", etc, etc, etc. Not only are there signs, there are pictures and various color lights either flashing or solid. Escaping over the Berlin Wall must have been easier then jockeying for the correct lane on the Parkway! In addition, they are redoing some of the toll booths, so a person without an easy pass must go through what appears to be an exit to pay the toll. (We missed one of these, so I'm sure the state will track us down through the rental car company and send us a ticket.) (This would be the second of the trip. The first was a parking ticket at the Manahawkin Flea Market. Despite no curb markings or no parking signs, the ticketing officer told complaining motorists that they "were supposed to know" that this was a no parking zone. After we mailed in the fine, the state sent us a note demanding more money!) OK, OK! We did survive N.J. and passed into New York and crossed over the Tappen Zee Bridge. Then it was on to Connecticut, where we passed by a bus merrily burning away. Luckily, passengers and driver escaped the flames. Driving through Connecticut and Massachusetts was easier then NJ, except for the habit of 18-wheeler trucks to travel in the middle lane. (In Washington state, they must use the right lane and go 10 MPH slower then cars.) Needless to say, by the time we got to our motel in Sturbridge, Mass, we were crabby, tired and hungry. But the bad part was over and the fun was soon to begin! Next: Old Sturbridge Village.


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