Day one- mostly a driving day. Took the back roads where the grass was green, the trees were lined up like soldiers on the side of the road and the traffic was sparse.

Took about 7 hours to get here and another 2 until our first stop of the trip - Little Rock!

Checked in and did 30 minutes of cardio after that long day of driving. Currently parked at Brewskies in downtown Little Rock for a little nibble and refreshing beverages. Though the food was okay, crossed the street to Samantha’s - way more our vibe. Enjoying a Paso Robles Merlot of all things.

And ended up walking by the river to see the lighted bridges and a nightcap at Flying Saucer - sometimes a girl wants something familiar.

Little Rock

Main event for today was to visit Pinnacle Mountain State Park for a hike. Lots of trees and shade, but hot enough to be a sauna. 2.5 hours,97 degrees and exhausting! River view was nice, but way to many spiders everywhere! Only wildlife was a lone tortoise, birds and squirrels.

Sweaty girls.

View from the top.

In the shade.

Hello little guy - you lost?

Time for the reward. Eating lunch/dinner at Copper Grill. Staff is great. Cauliflower Steak for appetizer followed by stuffed chicken for me - goat cheese included - yes please and meatloaf for Diane.

And moving on to a cute little place called Dizzy Gypsy. Really funky interior and unique cocktails. Having an Aperol Spritz and Diane is having the blueberry wheat beer she has grown fond of here. called Flyway Bluewing. But the wait staff sucks!

So our third stop was Cache - the “girls” there really could make good martinis! \240Had a few including one gin martini which was my favorite❤️. Also learned that in this state the alcohol tax is 33% - yikes!

So now we are at Lucky Lous. A lesbian frendly place with a cute dog named Roscoe running around. Very casual and a do over If I come back to LR.


Arrived from Little Rock, checked in and headed to Graceland. Good Elvis history lesson. Priced like a theme park- $160 for two.

In the middle of the Mississippi River!

Says it all. This place is huge! \240

A pink Cadillac- man these cars were big!

The living room. We both like peacocks.

Next to the TV room - also in yellow.

I want a plane named after me and with my own bedroom.

Next up, went to see the world famous Peabody ducks, followed by dinner at Blues City Cafe and a couple of stops to listen to some blues on Beale Street.

The original duck herder.

The Peabody ducks.

Litttle did we know that in about three hours this would become bike night-a lot of motorcycles.

Fun with guitars!

Hands down, the best staff on this strip was at Ghost River brewery - a place with two seltzers on tap- Bonus!


We are so good - started our day with an hour workout in the gym. Headed to Nashville, but wait a detour….

Well… lasted 3 days before finding a winery. Stopped and talked to a lovely man/owner at de terra vineyards. Free tastings - whatttttt? And the bottle we bought was $15. State 2 and a winery.

Wine tasting list.

Ready for harvest!

And then…. \240Winery number 2. Bought some Tennessee port.

Made it to Nashville only to be derailed by rain. Really cools it down, but took a bite out of our nighttime plans. Came to dinner at Skillery - like distillery. The food and atmosphere was mehhhh. Lost power due to the rain, so sitting on the patio enjoying the sound of rain without the wetness.

Where the rain is never ending rather than the song that never ends. So, glad we have a corner room at the Kimpton hotel so we can enjoy the light show. Early night for us and back at it tomorrow 🙃.


Began the morning with a walk through Centennial Park. Life size replica of the Parthenon, a nice lake and beautiful grounds

Not Greece!

Pretty lake.

Lunch at Merchants-grilled chicken for me and grilled cheese for Di. Deviled eggs to start and now it is time for some Honky Tonk. Heading down the strip - Cervrza Jacks, Layla’s and now Roberts.

Crowded - what pandemic?

Cerveza Jacks - nice place, but mehhh on the music.

Layla’s - liked the music.

Robert’s - the music just keeps getting better.

Ended with a little nibble at the restaurant next to our hotel called Nada - high end Mexican but we ended up with shrimp and jalapeño cornbread. With butta, that cornbread was the bomb!

Kentucky and West Virginia

States 3 and 4 on our trip. Left early so we could play with the kangaroos and visit a section of Mammoth Cave at Kentucky Down under. OMG - they are so soft! Even saw an albino one. I am on cuteness overload.

State 3 on our trip!

Nice rest area.

✅ playing with kangaroos.

Albino - red eyes and everything…

Look at that face 😀

Kangaroos everywhere.

Stopped in Bardstown for lunch at a little Italian place. Hopped back on the Bluegrass Parkway heading towards West Virginia. This is an absolutely beautiful road - trees and hills everywhere! Nice to have a divided road filled with green grass :-). What did we run into?

Springhill Winery! \240Learned that Kentucky actually had the first commercial winery in the United States - yep over 200 years ago. State 3 - winery

And now we are passing through West Virginia-staying in Charleston.

Hurricane Ida is on its way - the rain is following right behind us. Planning for the next few days to be away from it…

West Virginia and Virginia

Good morning walk along the river in Charleston WV. Not much of a downtown life, but we got a walk in. Another driving day - to Front Royal Virginia and the start of Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah Forest. State 5 of our road trip!

River walk and cool sculpture.

Being on Capital Street, disappointing to see this sign.

The drive through the Allegheny mountain region of the Appalachian mountain chain was beautiful. There is not a picture I could take that would do it justice. Put it this way, I did not read a single page in my book. Stopped for lunch in Elkin at a local place called CJ Maggie’s and had amazing home cooked food - pork loin, green beans and potatoes. Di had grilled chicken strips.

This is pretty much what every mile looked like - trees, trees and hills, hills, hills.

Road trip for sure!

Scenic outlook.

From the car doing 55 or was it 65?

Since it is Sunday, not alot going on in their downtown historic district, but we stopped in to Front Royal Brewery and VinVola for dinner and beverages. Not the best, not the worst, but wine and cheese are a solid go to. And it was cute to walk around and pet the dogs we met - a Shitzu and a Shipoo. Hmmmm- sign?

Hurricane Ida hit Louisiana today with a vengeance and is still about a day behind us. Nice to be flexible - heading to Virginia Beach tomorrow which is south of the forecasted rain path. Atlantic Ocean - you are up next!

Downtown Front Royal.

All you need is….

Street art.

Virginia - Skyline Drive to Virginia Beach

What a day! Entered the Front Royal entrance to the Shenandoah Forest and Skykine Drive. This drive is one of the original purposely designed scenic byways. It is part of the Blue Ridge Section of the Appalations. As soon as we entered, we had to wait for a group of wild turkeys to cross the road.

Ran across the road and hopped onto the wall.

The views on this 65 mile section of the drive were jaw-dropping. Valleys on one side and mountains on the other. Though there are several waterfalls on this drive, only one was flowing - hiked down to it and put my feet in the cold mountain water!

Near the entrance.

Views forever.

Hiked down and then back up. Today’s exercise.

Can only imagine what they are like in the spring.

My feet in the water :-)

Heading to Virginia Beach for the next few days to escape Ida and stay out of the truck for a few days. Riding down on Highway 33, realized we were driving through wine country so took a break at Barboursville Winery - stunning and great wine. It is said that Thomas Jefferson wanted good wine in Virginia and apparently this winery is reputed to finally realize his dream. We agree! \240The wine was good, they had a small restaurant and beautiful grounds!


And one last piece of history - in the middle of nowhere - and yes, the blue house was a tavern.

And ended up here!

Had dinner at Cactus Jack a few blocks away and called it a day!

Virginia Beach

Today was a lot about wandering around this city. Started with a hot 1.5 hour walk on the boardwalk - gotta say the cleanest cement boardwalk ever! \240Had lots of cool art sculptures.

And then practicality set in - laundry and a little bit of work. Followed by an outing for lunch at Mermaid Winery - really a restaurant and then a brewery stop for Diane at Smashmouth brewery. That place is huge and even had a seltzer on tap even through it tasted like water.

Ended our evening by finally putting our toes in the sand and listening to some Jamaican music and a night cap at North Beach. One of the musicians sat down next to Diane and played his flute! This is hands down the cleanest beach I have ever been on.

Assateague National Park Maryland and Rehoboth Beach Delaware

So, learning to be road warriors entailed taking a day off yesterday. We went to the beach for a short while then stayed in our room all day. I worked and Diane caught up on her shows. We even cooked - well sort of.

So up bright and early to get our exercise in - we woke up in Virginia, traveled through Maryland and slept in Delaware. States 6 and 7 of this trip.

We took the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel - a 17 mile bridge with two tunnels across the bay. A little windy!

Looking from where we came from.

Our mid goal today was Assateague National Seashore to the see the wild stallions. They have been on this island for 300 years. Though wandering around, not sure I would call them wild.

They are interesting - much smaller horses than I thought. Apparently, they have a nutrient poor diet of salt marsh grasses and so they have adapted by getting smaller. Since they also drink a lot of salt water, they appear bloated.

Moving on to our next destination for the evening, Rehoboth Delaware. Checked in and went to Fins for some seafood-local Flounder for both of us. Blackened for me and crab stuffed for Diane. Fun water fountain!

Wandered down to the boardwalk and walked around for a bit. Weather is finally perfect- 70s and breezy!

Wound up our evening at this place for local beer.

Woke up to 64 degrees which in our world means a walk! Walked around the neighborhood near our hotel then hit the road towards Washington DC. Plan on spending several days here as there is so much to see and do in our Nation’s capital.

Stopped for lunch at Kent’s Island and having lunch at The Crab Deck. Fresh air and a boat dock. Nothing like eating on the water. Trying the local clams and broiled scallops. Diane is having her go to-fried shrimp. The clams were awful! Way to salty. Scallops pretty bland. But we enjoyed the view.

Aren’t we cute?

Guardian of the duck pond - love herons.

Made it to the capital!

And dinner at Capitol City Brewing Company. Nachos - craving Mexican food! Di enjoyed this beer the best. Say this fast three times: Able & Miss Baker-Mobtown Brewing Company from Baltimore MD.

Georgetown and Washington DC

We are going to walk our way around this town to get the feel of it. Decided to start our day by walking down to Georgetown for lunch and a walk in the park. Found a place called il Canale for lunch - you guessed it - Italian - been craving pizza and they have a gluten free crust. During COVID, they expanded street eating - streeteries. Waiter was a little shy - seems new. That is the mantra these days….not the best pizza 🍕 in the world, but was gooey and cheesy.

This is the old stone house. It is the oldest building on its original foundation in DC.

Continued with a walk down to the Potomac River. Big boats and wide walkways, but dirty water due to the flooding.

And fun art.

Diane being goofy in the streets.

And ended up on one of our bucket list items at Graham’s Rooftop Bar. Nice to be up high. Diane is having a \240beer and I’m having Peach Paradise which is Kettle One Botanicals and Peach liqueur. It is 79 degrees and sunny - we are in the shade and it feels amazing!

My fancy smancy drink.

The Westin Washington, D.C. City Center

Spent the day relaxing. Took a break from working out today. Instead we decided to go to brunch at a place called Lincoln. Such a cute \240place - they were having a beach theme party. Had an awesome omelet - all made to order and Di had French toast and bacon. And cranberry mimosas of course. And we met a wonderful new friend - Teri. She had the cutest dog named Cardi, that gave the best kisses. She recommended so many cool places and is going to meet us later this week for HH.

Cardi :-).

The entire bar is covered in pennies.

And the tables with Knick knacks.

Bathroom signs 😂

Mimosas in the morning meant a nap in the afternoon. This was followed by strolling around our area and the Shaw area by Howard University.

Beer stop for Diane - not a do over. Staff was awful, but fries were good.

Street art.

And found another rooftop restaurant with Mexican food called El Teche. Guacamole was so good and queso as well!! View from our table.

Looking behind us - cute place!

View looking up from the street - that was our table on the left.

And what we really look like when not taking pictures 😜.

Home sweet home for 5 nights.

Washington DC sites!

Today is the day for museums and memorials. Little lack of planning on our part as many of the museums are closed on Monday and Tuesday. So we did get to see the National Museum of American History. Fun to see so much American culture.

Saw memorials during the day and at night. We actually took a night tour with a guided red electric cart. Although highly recommended, it is so dark that many of the memorials we stopped at we could not read anything.

State Capital

Reflecting Pool

MLK Memorial

Lincoln Memorial

FDR Memorial

WWII Memorial


And over 25,000 steps today. And we only saw a small part of it all!

Washington DC - final day

Well, it is our last day in the capital. Went for a morning walk down embassy row. There is a lot of construction in the city, but this street was the worst. Hard to see a lot of the embassys due to the construction fences. We also learned that we really don’t know world geography very well.

This area used to be called mansion row as most of the buildings were built by the rich and only later were turned into embassies. Most interesting were some of the sculptures.

Start of our walk.

Most interesting sculpture. Explanation follows.

South Korean embassy.

This flag we recognized - Mexico.

Gandhi and the India embassy behind there.

Stopped and had breakfast at the Daily Grill. Boy do we eat differently sometimes.

After a little retail therapy, ran across Ford’s Theater which happened to be next to a rest stop. Diane made me do it. Enjoyed talking to the manager.

Ended our day at a fun place and our visit to this city. It is across from the White House and where reporters used to gather along with White House staff. It is a red velvet room and has caricatures of politicians on the walls and coasters. We met our new friend Teri there - Diane called her the crazy lady 😂. But this place was really cool.

As we say goodbye to this city, I will remember how clean it was, how many cameras were watching us and how far you have to stay away from all the buildings due to the current state of our divided country and the result of the exit of our last president.

Today is largely a travel day with multiple stops along the way. We went through several states including Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and ending in Connecticut. So this makes states 8, 9 and 10 on this journey. Not counting NY yet as we will be revisiting it later in this journey.

Fun stop in Chocolate World.

View from the truck crossing the Delaware River.

After a long day of driving and a snafu with La Quinta - basically a homeless shelter - we are finally settled in to a Marriott hotel and walked to Barracuda for a margarita and then came back to this cozy place next to our hotel called El Amigo Felix. Now this is good old Texas Mexican food. And our waiter is hilarious- he is 70 years old and used to be a dancer for disco bands in the 70s.

And the moral of today is I WILL NEVER stay in a LaQuinta hotel again ever!!!! I would rather sleep in the truck.

New Haven

On a road trip, one is bound to end up with a rainy day, so you just gotta make the best of it. My Uncle Randy and his crazy ass girlfriend, came up to visit with us. We were going to spend the day hiking, but our plans changed to lunch and a walk around Yale University which is the third oldest university it the country and absolutely gorgeous! \240Meals today were unremarkable. We were told by all the locals that we should eat pizza because that is what they are known for. Unfortunately, we did not have time for pizza - but apparently Sally’s would be the place to go.

Love this picture of wifey standing in the rain.

When we needed a break from craziness. And our waitress was the best!!

Pickled beet devil eggs with wasabi and soy sauce.

Essex, CT and Providence RI

What a difference one day makes in the weather! \240It has been in the mid 70s, sunny and a slight breeze all day!

Woke up in New Haven and made our way to Essex - established in 1664 - for a ride in a steam train and a boat ride on the Connecticut river. I’ve always read that the clickety clack and swaying of a Pullman car was relaxing. Though a little rough, it was soothing!

Uncle Randy

Views from the train.

River boat ride.

Gillette castle (an actor).

Opera/play house.

Parted ways with the Uncle and stopped at this place on the way to Providence.

Wine was not so good, but the property was nice.

Made our way to The Graduate Hotel in Providence. and state 11 - 99 years old, redone and stunning! \240Supposed to be haunted, but haven’t seen a ghost yet! Our room even has a walk-in closet.

This is our room and there are actually two of those beds!

Pretty tuckered out, but did do a quick walk around the downtown area. Had a great dinner at Oberlin Restaurant- pasta for both of us!

Almost forgot this - not the original, but the second. Loved that movie.

And oh my, had to walk in the soft grass!

Cape Cod

Woke up this morning with the remembrance of 9/11 - 20 years ago today. Sometimes history is only remembered because we lived it. I do remember where I was that day…it changed my life focus.

State 12 - Massachusetts! \240Cape Cod here we come. Checked into our next casa away from home and came to Ptown. Hands down, the friendliest people live and visit here!

Some nice man volunteered to take our picture - don’t get that much anymore.

Where’s Waldo?

We went to visit a still operating lighthouse - it has been moved 4 times due to land erosion. Been looking to visit one of these - glad we finally did.

Also went to see the three sister lighthouses. At some point, it was common for there to be 3 in a row. Though relocated, one of the only remaining 3s in the country.

Left that part of Capecod and came over toward our area and had dinner at Caroline’s. Somehow restaurants with that name seem to be a thing for us - love the one in Austin. Diane finally had a lobster roll and I had $1 oysters.

Nantucket MA

11:00 ferry to Nantucket for the day. Windy day so it makes for a bumpy ferry ride. So it is a tennis shoe and hair up kind of day.

Took a bus out to Siasconset - away from the madness of the main town and had a lovely lunch at a place called Summer House. Ridiculously overpriced, but beautiful view and quiet. We are under the white tent which sits on a cliff side overlooking the water.

The hydrangeas were beautiful even at the end of the season.

Love the flowers boxes everywhere- part of the charm of this place.

A must do for the views on the left of the houses and amazing yards and the water/beach to the right.

We took the bus 🚌 out here - it was so easy to figure out and was $12 round trip for two rather than 140-200 for a taxi.

We went back to the main city - cobblestone streets, shopping (finally found a hat to cover my head from all the sun we’ve been seeing), a lighthouse and I had to walk on a beach. Anyone who knows me, knows sand is not my thing😀.

Diane doing her stance 😂

Had to walk through the sand to get here.

Flower box - so beautiful and plentiful.

Lots of money and boats abound.

A little clam chowder and a blueberry martini before getting back on the ferry.

Much smoother ride back and got to watch the sun go down.

Overall a very relaxing and exhausting day. Stay away from the area immediately when you exit the ferry and you will get a much better feel for the beauty of this island.

Plymouth Rock and New Hampshire

Leaving the beautiful state of Massachusetts today and the last stop in this state. Plymouth Rock!

Explanation of the “Rock”

The Rock

It’s enclosure

Replica of the Mayflower built in the 1950s.

Diane’s stance, take?

State 13 today - New Hampshire! Time with my aunt, uncle and two cousins. The baby is Caleb- my cousin Andy’s son. Had dinner on the patio at Tomahawk Butchery and Tavern. Beautiful night - even got a little chilled.

Merrimack New Hampshire

Today was totally chill in the “Live free or die state” of New Hampshire. The morning was spent on road warrior duties - washed the truck, laundry and working.

For exercise today, went for a walk by the Nashua River. Nice to be able to walk in the shade by a river. My uncle says it is the maples that change color first, so I’m assuming that is a maple.

After cleaning up from walking and the really clean fresh air, we stopped by a winery. It was absolutely beautiful! \240

The wines were a little sweet for us, but the glasses were cool and they serve bread, oil and cheese with your tasting. It was absolutely nice for a winery in NH until I asked for the restroom. To the right of the bar I was told. Walked through the door and was outside near a porta potty that smelled so bad I wouldn’t even go in. So much for that!

Went for one final visit to my Aunt’s house for dinner. Good to see family on this trip.

It is interesting driving around here - lots of small and winding roads with tall trees and big green yards. I swear we would drive 5 miles and be on 10 roads.

BawHawba (Bar Harbor)

State 14 today and the farthest spot on our journey. Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park.

The leaves are starting to change colors so it was a beautiful drive. Came down to the very crowded city for a late lunch at Geddys where they had a Maine blueberry ale with actual blueberries inside. Diane’s favorites are the pumpkin beers with the cinnamon sugar rim. Popular around these parts!

Views from downtown Bar Harbor and lunch. Little cloudy today.

Real blueberries in that beer! \240

Clam chowder, lobster roll and blueberry tart - can’t get more Maine than that!

Different places around our hotel. Waiting so late to book gave us limited choices. The property is beautiful but the room is a little dark. But we did get a balcony though not an ocean view. As a bonus, got a pair of bunk beds in our room - hmmm. What can I do with those?

My new smirk 😜

Quiet corner to ourselves. Just the gentle rocking of the water on the rocks.

Some really clear water below the deck we are sitting on.

Bar Harbor and Acadia National Paek

Got up early to go to Acadia National Park - thank goodness because it was already crowded and beyond comfortable when we got off the trail and left. We found out quickly that you had to have a reservation for Cadillac Mountain, so we have one for tomorrow!

Drove through the park and hiked around Jordan pond. Who wouldn’t like a pond named after your youngest child!

View from the start - we walked all the way around which was almost 4 miles.

So, very unique trail…. Started flat, then was a “boardwalk” - let’s call it what it really was - uneven planks with a pull over to pass people for 30 minutes. Then became a rock path where you have to hold on to the side rocks and dehnnnn flat on the second half…

This is the boardwalk…

Here is a little red maple.

A beautiful bridge!

Diane posing as I told her to.

A loon - never knew this was a big deal until everyone asked us if we saw one. Saw two - very elusive as they dive for awhile and come up very far away. Looks like a duck but doesn’t act like a duck :-).

So after our outdoor hiking adventures, went to lunch here:

Had a blueberry martini and a lobster roll/clam chowder. For dessert, we had blueberry pie with vanilla and blueberry ice cream - yummm.

View from their dock at low tide.

Went for a beer tasting (Di) and a wine tasting (Tee). We have learned that east coast wines are sweet and not quite our style. But… still fun to visit.

Atlantic Brewery where blueberry beer rules!

Bar Harbor Cellars where the wine was not at all bearable, but the property was nice.

We are staying at a a Holiday Inn Resort. Didn’t think I would ever say those words together:) but the property is amazing although the rooms are dated. This is sitting by the pool and view from the secret spot we found 😀.

Can say that I have never seen such calm water in a harbor in my life. The water is like a flat sheet-and the color is amazing! Today’s weather was the bomb!

Very crowded in the main town, so avoiding it and hanging on the fringes. Much more enjoyable.

Day 25 in the books!

Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor

This was the most picture perfect day in the books yet. Around 72° all day and we spent all day outside.

Started our morning with a 9 o’clock reservation at Cadillac Mountain in Acadia Park. The views were absolutely amazing and we had the clearest skies.

We drove around the circle loop road and ended up stumbling upon the cutest Japanese garden.

Sand garden - didn’t know that was a thing.

Went on the hunt for Duck pond bridge - great brook underneath and a beautiful bridge.

This was all before noon! \240Headed back to the hotel room for a quick snack and then on to the sandbar. It only appears during low tide and you can walk across it to Bar Island. Don’t get stuck over there cause once the high tide comes in, it is completely under water! \240On the sandbar.

Looking back at Bar Harbor from the island.

Next up lunch - won’t mention the name cause they SUCKED. But the property was nice.

Diane’s pose - Tee’s suggestion of course. Thankfully she is a good sport 😜

Those oysters were the only thing worth eating for a $120 lunch. That “lobster bisque”tasted like cream, not lobster.

Made our way back to the hotel on foot and stopped for a 4:00 happy hour at Jack Russell Steak House and Brewery. \240The bartender was amazing and the blueberry beer was good.

Took a hot tub break and then again sat outside to watch the most amazing sunset with the calmest blue waters. Can’t really have a favorite on this trip as we have done so much, but the views were the best!

And another 20,000 plus steps kind of day \240- over 23,000!

Maine !

Left on the best day as Bar Harbor was in a fog bank. We could barely see the water. Driving three hours down the road making our way back through New Hampshire tomorrow for a hiking stop and on to Burlington.

Decided to relax and chill in our hotel room - needed a road warrior break. We upgraded our Marriott status on this trip as we have stayed in so many hotels. So we got an upgrade today into a two bedroom two bath suite with a living room and kitchen that sits four people. Would be nice if we were staying longer, but will take it!

Did go to lunch on the river and then watched some old movies and called it a day. Independence Day and Collateral…

Last walk in Bar Harbor.

View from lunch in Auburn Maine.

The thing I love about New England is all the rivers and lakes, ocean when you want it and green green trees and landscaping dotted with amazing flowers and color.

Flume Gorge NH and Burlington Vermont

Started our morning meandering through the back roads and small cities in Maine and New Hampshire. Stumbled through Woodstock Maine - there are many other Woodstock cities in other states as well :-). Stumbled across this sculpture there. And a good range of tree colors. This two hour drive with tree covered hills and tree canopies over the road has been astonishing.

Road to ourselves.

And into the White Mountain National Forest in NH to visit the Flume Gorge. Very cool walk!

A covered bridge!

Inside of the bridge.

Beautiful view!

This boardwalk and a lot more took you through the gorge.

Glacier rock.

And made it to State 15, Vermont! Known as the Green Mountain state and yet again, an amazing drive and we are like 50 miles from Canada. In three different states today.

Stopped in at Ben and Jerry’s. Due to the staffing shortage and long wait, all we did was take a pee break and a few photos.

Ice cream graveyard 😂 and Diane says she has Jerry Garcia hair.

Found a real covered bridge you could drive through.

And made it to Burlington and Lake Champlain. When you are starving, you find the closest place which was Deep City. Onion dip and burgers for dinner and \240then you go and watch the sunset on the lake-bright light, bright light.

Those are the NY Adirondack mountains in the background.

Burlington Vermont

Started our day with a little exercise by walking on the path around Lake Champlain. Decided it was another brunch morning and had a Mimosa flight and some really good tacos - They had a maple flavored sour cream as the salsa. Diane had a custom omelette which she really enjoyed as well. OMG - I can’t stop thinking about those tacos….

Meandered around Church St in downtown Burlington after breakfast.

Got a little distracted as we had to make a 911 call for an elderly lady that face planted onto the cement. None of the people around them had a phone, so we called it in and waited until they showed up - about 3-4 minutes. She seemed to be okay, but they did take her away.

And dehnnnn.. The highlight of our day. Geri, A \240woman we met on our Ireland bus trip five years ago picked us up and toured us around the area. We started at her summer home which was right on the lake. We got to put our feet in the sand and cold water. She then took us to Snowflake a winery, where she doesn’t even like the wine. We appreciate her taking us there and we agreed - we did not like the wine either. After that she took us to two breweries - Zero Gravity and Queen City Brewery. \240Vermont has around 70 craft breweries - more per capita than any other state - yeah Vermont!!! \240

Lovely time! \240Night cap at Juniper next to our hotel and bed time 🥱.

Meandering to the Fingerlakes NY

Left Burlington and spent 6 hours driving to Penn Yan, NY on the Keuka Lake- one of the celebrated Fingerlakes in upstate NY. And state 16 on our trip!

What a drive - through the Adirondack park and mountains - small roads and lots and lots of trees and small villages. I swear there is a river or lake around every corner. I will say that my favorite part of this trip has been the water - creeks, rivers, ponds, lakes and oceans. They are everywhere and eventually you want to take them for granted-but don’t. The downside was there was no where to stop for breakfast or lunch in these backroads. Either due to it being a Tuesday or closed for the season. What are these seasons you speak about? \240That is our running joke.

When we crossed the bridge into NY, we immediately pulled over into a park with a lighthouse.

We actually climbed to the top and took this picture!

Staying on a lake is awesome! After checking in, we went to check out two wineries within 5 miles of our property. Sorry to say that so far we are not impressed with the wines at all. However, the views from the two wineries we visited were great.

And Rooster Hill.

So.. served our wine flight in shot glasses. Not a fan of this idea.. realized on the second day that you are supposed to pour that into your wine glass as you are ready to taste it.

And we have an awesome lake view from our door. Which tonight required blankets so we could be warm. And had to get into the pumpkin spirit with a pumpkin spice martini.

Fingerlakes NY

Hired a driver today for 5 hours to take us to wineries on Seneca Lake and visit a waterfall or two.

Started at 11:00 pick-up and a drive to Missick Cellars. Beautiful view of the river, but drizzly today so we had to enjoy if from the inside.

Up next was Damaini. We did find a wine we liked there called MC2. Property was not as beautiful as the first one, but we could still see the water!

Third winery, Hector Wines, we sat outside under a tent with the rain sprinkling around us.

This is a private residence. Imagine \240having this in your side yard!

Last winery was Shaw - a unique place. Kind of small and run down but we liked the wine.

And last not but least, was a quick brewery stop at Climbing Bines.

Needless to say - dinner at the hotel and early to bed!

Laurentide Beer Company

Rainy morning means working and laundry. Now that the skies have cleared, we ventured out to lunch at Keuga cafe for grilled chicken 🥪. We are so missing vegetables. Once we get home, after two days of Mexican food going to do a juice cleanse to realign our bodies!

Walked down the Main Street - cute town which like so many has a lot of shuttered businesses. Stopped into Laurentide for a beer and enjoyed the flowers surrounding us.

And Abandoned Brewery - set in an old barn. Pretty happening place. Nice view - Diane and the lake. Beers flat.

Their grape 🍇 vines are really full of leaves and they have not harvested grapes yet. To bad the wines don’t come out any better. Think they do more sweet wines around here.

Overall, nice sleepy area but beers were lackluster and wines even more so.

But we did have great sunsets from our patio.

Niagara Falls

Today is Niagara Falls Day - all I can say is Wow! Amazing site to see. It was extremely windy and chilly this morning so we passed on the boat ride choosing instead to walk three miles to each separate fall - American Falls, Bridal Veils Falls, and Horeshoe Falls. This walk also included walking by the raging waters that feed those beasts! \240And a rainbow every time. Wind!

View of all the falls with American Falls in the front.

Bridal Veil Falls.

Horseshoe Falls.

Wind blown hair but otherwise looks like a postcard!

Geese hoping not to go over the falls.

And a quick Hard Rock stop for lunch.


State 17 on this beautiful road trip. Wow- busy bees we are.

Took a short detour off the highway- they have a bunch of wineries and covered bridges so stopped at one of each in Madison County. Silver Crest Winery

Not so good.

Harpersfield Covered Bridge.

And on to Cleveland and a busy busy town. Didn’t know there were two pro games in town this weekend - baseball and footfall tomorrow. Lots of energy. Before dinner took a pit stop at Noble Beast - after the beers we have been drinking, they are really good!

And a second stop at MastHead Brewery recommended by a local at the last place.

Went to dinner at a Lebanese Restaurant called Taza - still tasting the garlic. Was good to have something different though.

Wandered around the downtown area afterwards- place is really alive and the weather was great. Found a street with my name and this art in our hotel.

And calling it a night!


Such a vibrant downtown - who would have thought that Cleveland would have so much energy. If you put three pro stadiums, museums, restaurants and keep it clean, one will have some fun. Throw in a lake with marinas and it has it all - at least until the cold weather blows in!

Lake Erie.

After Breakfast, we walked to the Rock and Roll \240Hall of Fame with 60,000 Cleveland Browns fans. They sure got their “woof” down. The stadium is next door to the museum.

Tailgating is done a little differently here.

Didn’t we all own one of these?

It is so cool to hear the cannons, boat horns and people cheering anywhere you go in this area. Browns won! \240There was also a pro baseball game. How does a city of less than 400,000 people support three professional sports teams and we get one??!!

This is a fun street with restaurants/bars - Ken and Annabelle would love it. 4th Street Near downtown.

Indiana, Illinois, Missouri and Oklahoma

Time to head home - slowly but surely. Heading out and will stay in state 18, Indiana. Then two days through Illinois, Missouri and Oklahoma to make it home. States 19-21.

Stopped in Terre Haute - claim to fame is that they designed the original coca \240cola bottle. Went with comfort at Cracker Barrel again - this one serves wine and beer - when in doubt, have the sangria.. A little bar stop in to chat with a local and bed time - oops, make that two stops, this time at a cute little jazz place called Verve. And a cute dog named Apollo that everyone knows. Funny - talked with his owner, but could not tell you his name!

Verve - what is that behind Diane’s head? \240

Stepped foot in Illinois. Kaskaskia Dragon - random stop. The roads here are awful. Apparently it shoots fire if you want to go get a token from the store.

Drove by this landmark

And a billboard that kept us laughing all day long.

Checked their website - OMG.

Norman Oklahoma for the night and Tex-Mex finally!!!

Well, all good things must come to an end. This started out as a trip to get us up into the far NE part of the country. That part was accomplished and along the way we went through 22 states in 38 days.

We are amazed at how vast and different our country is. From small towns to large cities, beaches to mountains, creeks to rivers to lakes, I don’t think any country has as much geographical or ethnic diversity.

Friendly people in some areas and not so much in other areas. Probably met the friendliest people in Bar Harbor Maine and Cleveland Ohio.

Amazed at the water we saw. The rivers and lakes east of the Mississippi were so blue and many times so clear I was amazed. Not like the brown rivers and water in our home state. Virginia Beach was hands down the cleanest beach and boardwalk I have been on and the water was blue! The harbor in Maine was the flattest and bluest ocean in this country that I have seen. Sat and watched it every night we were there. And the countless bridges looking down onto such large rivers and the occasional water tunnel were always a unique way to cross water. Staying on a lake in upstate NY where we woke up every morning and went to bed each night on a lake was just as nice and driving that area and seeing a lake constantly.

And waterfalls - always fun. Hiked to a few, saw some driving and got to experience the majestic Niagara Falls. Wow is all I can say about that!

Driving itself was an experience. There are a lot of roads in this country that need work - some roads were so bumpy that my stomach was flipping. And I don’t get seasick. Washington DC was very clean but the construction everywhere was hard to deal with. We did enjoy how the highways are built in most other states. They are built without access roads and instead of those there are trees blocking the view of the cities. You seldomly see the cities when you are driving. So different than the concrete jungles we see at home. Makes for a very pleasant driving experience.

So for the future - Ohio and Illinois have speed traps everywhere-thank you Google Maps for the heads up on those. \240The worst roads we drove on were in Oklahoma, Indiana, Illinois, New Jersey and Rhode Island.

Hard to pick the prettiest places we visited, but I’m going to go with Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Virginia mainly due to water and trees.

So many places were so clean, but was disappointed in a few that were dirty like Providence RI. Washington DC was the cleanest city - hard to believe such a large city can keep itself so clean. Unexpectedly, Little Rock and Virginia Beach were also very clean. We saw a lot of homeless and panhandlers in the cities we passed through. This is a National issue that one day hopefully our country will be able to get a better handle on.

6300 miles and 19 hotel rooms - in the middle of the night, first it was where is the bathroom and then it was where is the tp holder🤷‍♀️

So as I close out my very first journaling experience, I am reflecting on a few things:

  • We have a country that I could spend the rest of my life exploring and not touch it all.
  • Poverty and wealth is everywhere and the disparity between the two is disheartening.
  • Every state/city has its own unique blend of people/cultures which is why I love our country. Living in a city that is heavily inspired by the Mexican culture, it is interesting to visit cities that are influenced by other cultures.
  • I would love it if everyone you greeted with a hello or good morning \240would respond to you - manners are lacking in a lot of places.
  • There is a huge labor shortage in the hospitality industry. If that could be married better with immigration, maybe we could make some headway.
  • As much as we don’t like cold weather, the people who live in cold climates don’t like the hot weather - so explains why people live where they do.
  • Although I doubt we will ever leave San Antonio as our home town, there are definitely better places for us to take a summer break.