Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Bright Lights Big City

Hey Campers:

July 7. We spent our last night in Catoctin National Park. On Friday we were told that some of the park area was closed off by the Secret Service until Sunday morning. Trust me, we weren’t going hiking anywhere so we just ignored it. I guess it is a known “secret” that Camp David is located in this park and the Prez was in town. Hmmm. Maybe that is where he was when I went to his house last week.

History buzzzz…. Did you know that Camp David was named after President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s grandson? This is where Eisenhower took his family, friends and later dignitaries for fun and major world discussions.

We took the scenic route to New Jersey. Talk about 10 jillion small towns and burgs. It was nice to see things other than the freeway. Okay. Some of it was a little weird. Some of the towns looked like Ben Franklin just walked down the street.  They were close to the road and row houses.

We decided to stop for the night in Clinton, NJ at the Spruce Run State Park. What a treat. Hey Paul. We can always have the family campout here. Great beach, boat dock for the toys and picnic areas. And get this. It is in town. What a deal!

When we arrived the sun was shining and lots of people picnicking and having fun. Later in the day a storm came up and it rained, thundered and lightning most of the night. Come morning, everything was calm again. It did not even look as if anything had happened.  It reminded me of Jesus and his disciples on the lake and Jesus was asleep. Got to be a children’s story in that somewhere.

July 8. We drove on toward New York City (NYC). We stayed at the Liberty Harbor and RV “resort” in Jersey City, NJ. Of course NYC has no where to park an RV. And if they did we would not have taken the Hilton 4 to the city with crazy drivers. Now when I say resort, I really mean a gravel path with electricity. However, it does over look the NYC skyline and the Statue of Liberty. As you know we never book anything because we do not want to be tied to a time schedule. So they did not really have room for us but we stayed in their dry camping area. This was great. We only had to pay half the rate. Yahoooo.


We got settled and went to the city. We took the PATH train to NYC. The PATH train is the Port Authority of NYC & NJ link to each state. The cost is $2.25 each way. (Cheaper than the BART.)  We arrived at the World Trade Center. It is awesome buildings but they are a long way from being completed.

We decided we would spend the afternoon in Central Park while we await our niece to get off work. We jumped on the subway and headed uptown. So I am letting the “subway king” direct how to get there since he always took the subways or buses when we came to town while I was slaving at work. I know rough life.

Central Park in the summer time is a very beautiful place. Everything is green and vibrant. There were people playing instruments, singing and doing weird exercises. We never could figure what he was doing or trying to state! The fountain statue was cool.


There were turtles, painters, boaters, and people getting married. This is an awesome park for anything you want to do. It has so many nooks and crannies. We really missed having our bikes here. We did not want to bring them on the subway. It was a fun afternoon. But, it was hot and sticky.


Our niece LaShelle met us and took us to Negril, a Caribbean restaurant near NY University. She has exposed us to many cultures when we come to town. Those rice and peas are really good.


After dinner we went window shopping. Now most of ya’ll know I am not adventurous when it comes to food. But no way am I ever trying fried octopus. It is just not going to happen!
We called it a night and headed back to Jersey City. Thanks LaShelle for lots of fun.

July 9. We  head back to the city. Today we decided to be bus people. You know Lo always wants to see how the “real people” live. So we head to the ferry. On our way we see over 100 Boy Scouts. Why are we always seeing Boy Scouts??? Where are those Pathfinders? We have not seen one. Oh well. I guess it is summer.

We decide we are going to Staten Island since I have never been there. Did you know the ferries are free?? Don’t know how NYC can afford this one. It was a great ride. We jumped on the city bus and toured the island. I was very impressed with the people on the bus. They did not hesitate to give up their seat to an older person, women or anyone they felt needed help. Amazing. We saw a building that had a weird shape. It turned out to be the police headquarters for the island.

On our return trip to NYC we saw the great lady standing in the harbor. We decided not to visit her or Ellis Island this trip as we had visited them the last time we were here.

When we got back to NYC we jumped on another bus and headed uptown. We saw Trader Joe’s in the strangest places. They looked more like clothing stores.

We passed through the Riverside Park area. This is an area where the upper middle class to out and out rich live. They had nice homes and parks. Nannies out with the kids and dog walkers. There is the Riverside Catholic church. It took up 2 square city blocks.

Now, just up the road is Spanish Harlem and Harlem. Talk about disparity. There was a distinct difference. The people looked stressed out and tired. Life is lived on another level. This is also where Columbia University is located.

Who’s to determine which is better and for whom. Not me.  As per Lo, this is where the real people live.

As we head back downtown and the park, we approach the carriage rides. This seems like a good idea, but it is hot and sorry to say these horses stink. How is this ride romantic when you smell horse poop? $50 bucks a short ride. Not today.

We also saw Shaquill O'Neil walking or running down the street to get away from clambering people. I know fame is important to some, but he deserves some freedom.

We toured the designer stores areas and kept going. No sales here.

We pass by St Marks and it along with most of NYC is getting a remodel.

Ya know, I think I am finally getting a handle on his grandparents stuff. I walked back four blocks to get my granddaughters The American Doll. I really wanted to start them a collection. As I was getting ready to make the purchase something said call Sharelle. She said to wait. The girls are not old enough to appreciate. So I put the dolls back. It was hard. But I did.

We reached Times Square and enjoyed our time here. You know how I love my ABC stations.The Chew, The View,  GMA, etc. We were going to see a show but most have been sold out. Lo wanted to see the new Motown show, but it is sold out for several weeks. Bummer.


Oh well, we still decided to celebrate our 40th Anniversary at our favorite NYC restaurant, Carmines. The only menu is on the wall. It is so popular you have to make sure you are willing to way in line. You never leave this place without a doggy bag. Of course on our way to the PATH it starts to rain. We made it without getting too wet.

I know you are thinking they did not hit the MOMA, Museum of Modern History, etc.. You are right. We just were museumed out with the Civil Tour. We will do more next year on are way to Nova Scotia.

Well campers, NYC  have been fun but we are getting ready to slowly head back west.

See ya soon.
Lorenzo & Bren

1 comment:

  1. Only you guys would manage to get to N.Y. with an RV.

    Central Park with the half-nekkid people would be A LITTLE MUCH for me... man, that Catholic church was huge! They definitely need small groups!