Monday, July 23, 2012

The road trip begins - 22 July 2012

Why is it that after a few nights in a hotel it seems impossible to get all the stuff back into the suitcases you arrived with, after all we had only been window-shopping on 5th Ave?

Nevertheless, we crammed it all in somewhere and hauled our multitudinous suitcases and carry on bags down to the lobby and out to the street and tried a new experience; hailing a New York yellow cab.  With a little difficulty the luggage was crammed in and we set off back to JFK, not because we were flying but that was the only place we could collect a rental car on a Sunday.  Since we drove back to Manhattan on our way out of town it was a little inefficient but needs must.

After attempting to convince me to pay extra for a decent sized car she discovered that they had none available of the size booked and paid for so upgraded us for free to a very new Ford Fusion; tres comfortable!

So off we set on our road trip across the US, from New York to California with Illinois plates..  We had been, very generously, given a brand new sat-nav with US maps so there was no real bother negotiating our way out of Nrew York back through Manhattan and then up the Hudson River valley.  After a stop for supplies we came across the 'Walkway over the Hudson' State Park so stopped for lunch and to walk partway across what is now the longest footbridge in the world. (It used to be a railway bridge.) It was a bit hot (and we did not have the time) to make the full crossing and back so we went as far as the river for the photo shots and returned.

A few miles north was one of the Vanderbilt Mansions that is now a National Park and we arrived just a few minutes before the 3pm tour with an excellent, informative and engaging guide.  The Vanderbilt fortune began with the Staten Island ferry that today provides rides to all for nothinig.

Pressing on, we crossed the Hudson a few miles futher north and arrived at Saugerties, our first destination.  Consulting the information about things nearby we discovered the Saugerties Lighthouse and set off to find it.  What a fabulous surprise; after a short w alk from the road there was this little picture perfect house with a light on the top, not at all what we had expected to see.  Our picnic dinner was at a park back in town on a tributary river, the Esopus Creek.

145 miles today, 145 miles total.  States: New York.

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