Sunday, 4 July 2010

Preparing for America

Passport, deodrant (it's going to be warm), clean socks. The tick list is ready, and I think I'm just about set for a trip across America. Well, a small part of it.

The trip will start in New York City.

I last visited The Big Apple two years ago, when I was staying in Massachusetts. I drove from Cambridge, just north of Boston on a day trip of around 220 miles each way. However, a missed turning meant I didn't park at the last commuter rail stop before the city boundary.

Then I hit a queue of traffic caused by the meeting of two 18-wheelers in The Bronx as I headed towards Manhattan. After a couple of hours stuck, looking at the sky-rise flats, the last few miles of the journey could eventually be made.

However, when I made it to Manhattan, no parking lot had a space. I turned back to the direction from which I came and stopped on a highway for en evening meal on my return to Cambridge.

I am hoping for better luck this time.

From New York, I will be heading west to visit some towns not yet experienced. To Hershey, home of the famous chocolate and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, for a couple of nights.

Then, it will be on to Columbus. From the state capital of Ohio my drive will continue to Indianapolis.

That's as far west as I will drive as then I turn north-east and to a city of plenty of memories and friends. To Cleveland. Home of the Browns.

There awaits an extra feelgood factor this time around, but more about that when I arrive there.

The longest driving stretch of the tour will be from Cleveland for the flight home from JFK airport.

In all, a driving distance of 1,450 miles according to the route finders with plenty of breaks in between for beer, good food and plenty of chances to use my camera.

I spoke to Marble Office (management) and the thought of making a travelogue of the adventure for a special radio programme in the Christmas schedule was born. So my roving microphone will travel with me as I aim to meet a few characters and experience some history and attractions.

I will endeavour to blog as I go, and this first attempt at using the website will hopefully get me familiar with how to upload pictures and discover which layout I think works best.

Wish me luck as I remember you can turn right on a red light (but NOT in NYC) - and I still wonder what the flashing red traffic lights mean.

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