Monday, September 28, 2009

Day 7: New York New York New York

I have always been afraid of the city.

But this time was different.
We crossed many bridges to come here. Many of them costing us 5 and 8 $.

My glorious sister lives in New York, in Astoria (Queens). We have not seen each other in way too many years. Finally I have traveled close enough to pay her a visit.

It was wonderful. She is an amazing cook.
One trend that seems to be following us around the country: when we come into town for a visit, people seem to play hookie.

my sister took us out into the city.

This woman was great. The song was very enjoyable. I did not tip her and to this day I feel bad I didn't.

Whoooaa!! We've seen this before! In new orleans!

After much walking and seeing of things, we stopped to have a beer. This is one of the greatest benefits to being your own boss. Beer any time of day.

My sister is so cool

And then, in a courtyard surrounded closely on all sides by mounds and miles of city,

Chad and I fell in love,


So goodbye new york, we love you and we promise to come back to see more of you. Such a large and colorful thing is impossible to grasp in one day but we will return: To try and get a feel for what you are, what you look like, what you taste like...

Yea, New York is awesome!

Well friends, we have been so busy in New England, we have been to Maine and Vermont! Now we head to upstate new york through the Adirondack!.

But we will update you soon!

Its just too pretty to do anything on a computer

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Day 6: Philadelphia

After Staunton virginia, we drove into the night to by-pass the D.C. traffic... hardly any traffic at 3 am. We would have made it to Philly in 5 hours had the car not overheated as soon as we got onto the interstate.

It was intense.

Now we have a constant drip of coolant, an anti-freeze trail if you will... all over the united states. sorry nature. i really am. But an 8$ jug of toxic neon green every few days is way less expensive than a new radiator.

my apologies.

we arrived to a futon at 5 am at my friend john's house. John is one of the super best friends/people i've ever met. I was super excited to see him and all his roomates and his girlfriend Nikki.

It was a rough night, and an early morning... like noon or something crazy like that. We were supposed to get up and play a house show down the street at 2, but we'll get to that.

John and Nikki were in the kitchen doing something...

Platters and platters of eggs and bacon and potatoes and toast and nutella and coffee!!

(at this point we'd been hungry for about 2 days)

a much needed day off with our friends to drink beer, play the new Batman video game and barbecue.

Oh! and we saw this guy on a motorized wheel chair with a Maltese in his lap and a green parrot on his shoulder.

Later that evening we roll up to the club


The fire...

This is the sound guy... sound asleep drunk on the sound board. if that gives you an indication of a sunday night at the Fire.

My favorite part of Philly... their cat 'Cowboy'.

who constantly escapes.

Our friends took us to another part of the city for Philly Cheesesteaks... I mean... we had to.

Another Bridge for Chad's collection. This is the Ben Franklin.

With our bellies full of love and our hearts full of burn we headed back to the house. The next day on the schedule was New York, but this house show had fallen through.

Anyways, I hope you enjoyed my blog today.

As it turns out we were off to New York after all... my long lost sister had called me back and we were on our way to Queens over the George Washington Bridge!

As an addenum... the dripping radiator carried us to New York, and Maine, and Vermont, and Pittsburgh... and Michigan... and Kentucky, and Tennessee, and Georgia... and finally all the way to Sarasota Florida when it finally exploded in the Florida heat, more than 1500 miles from where this blog took place. Take care of your Volvos guys.... especially if you work and live in them.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Day 5: Stuanton Virginia and dino queen

Time to hit the road for our 3rd day in Virginia, (which is apparently the last state in the south)

Along the way Virginia just got prettier. Since Lynchburg is not directly off the interstate you have to travel some smaller roads to get there and back to N-81.

After we passed this bridge over the river we had to turn around and check it out. Its a trail head to the Appalachian Trail. There were teenagers jumping off the railing into the river and retired folks huffing (glue) along the day hike. Once we crossed the bridge the forest starts to swallow the trail with shade. We didn't go very far, but still it was getting noticeably cooler and darker, more and more inviting. It became very clear that we were just going to keep going...

With the last ounce of clarity left in our mind we turned back, vowing to return for a full month hike on the trail next summer. This would serve a two fold purpose. Not only would we be hiking the Appalachian Trail, we'd also be training for the Rockies. After 4 weeks through Virginia we'd be totally ready for Colorado. (We plan to spend the later 2 months of summer working at the Ecological lab I once lived in when I was a scientist).

(under the bridge)

Back on the road, we passed the famous natural bridge. We didn't actually see the bridge itself, but we did see all the crap that has been built up around it to lure tourists in. This guy was on the side of the road in Glasgow.

These are Chad's favorite thing to photograph, (maybe just as much as stencils). I think we turned around like 3 times... well... 2 times. We didn't turn around for Foamhenge. Despite his pleas. He'd lost his damn mind when we passed it. I was "blah blah blahing" about something when we saw the sign...


he still regrets that we did not stop.

sorry... so do i. Next time. i promise

Arriving in Staunton we were greeted by more elephants:

It had a wonderful feel. warm afternoon sunlight. wooden tables and chairs. Large couches with big pillows. There were 2 girls conversing over a small pot of tea on the lips shaped lounge.
One was american, one japanese, they were practicing english. One was explaining to the other the difference between 'fat' and 'chubby'. it was really cute to over hear.

Marybeth took care of us all night. She is the owner and the only employee (the only one working that night anyways) and she worked tirelessly without lag or break, except of course to talk at length of tea flavors and origins with careful recommendations and warm welcoming smiles.

We got to drink tea all night, try every one. The menu was very well put together, with succinct but very descriptive blurbs for each of 30 teas (the big silver jars above).

It was so perfect after the drive and the walk. Sunlight streamed through the window and gradually filled the room with shades of afternoon.

Fruity Russian Caravan

Base teas Assam and Keemun with an addition of Chinese Lychee tea to give it fruitiness, and small amounts of Lapsang offer a hint of smokiness make this a great afternoon tea.

Organic Yerba Mate

A nutritious stimulate from South America, shade grown in Paraguay to maximize flavor. Embrace your inner revolutionary!

Rooibos Savannah

A shout out to my favorite Southern city! Filled with almonds and cocoa nibs for a delightful and relaxing treat.

As the evening deepened, we set up on the porch facing the downtown strip. We got to try more tea. I think these pictures are suitable for describing the color and timber of the flavors:

Vanilla Honeybush

This one is infused with vanilla beans. Like manna from heaven.

Soul Soother

Chamomile, Lavender, Lemon Balm, Passionflower, Peppermint. Lower your pulse rate, any time of day.

Then we drove to philly... the car over heated... we arrive at 5 am.

we were no longer in the south