About Us

Southeast (Gulf Coast), Texas, United States

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Leaving NYC and Heading to Red Bay, Alabama

After a rainy and windy Saturday, we woke up on Sunday to a very clear and pleasant day. This was our day to pack up and head back south. Our next stop is the Red Bay, Alabama campground, the location of the Tiffin factory where our Bus was constructed. We have a November 3 appointment to get some warranty work done.

While I used the internet to pay our monthly bills, Patsy walked around the RV park and took some pictures of the area.......... especially the marina and our views of the Statue of Liberty. Here's what she got:

We did not get on the highway until about noon, and as we headed south, we noticed that the fall foilage had really turned and gotten very colorful during the time that we were in Washington DC, Pennsylvania, and New York City. On Sunday, we drove as far as Harrisonburg, Virginia, and spent the night on a Walmart parking lot.

When we got up on Monday morning, we really began to notice the fall color off in the distance. Knowing that we were near the Blue Ridge Parkway, we decided to take the Bus on a few miles of it. We got on it near Lexington, VA and drove on it until we got to Roanoke, VA.......... about 70 miles. We saw some beautiful color.......... and the following is just a sample of the 150 pictures that we took. There are a lot of them, but it was hard to choose. The first picture will probably become the back of our RV Business Card to replace the picture that we now use:

The speed limit on the Blue Ridge Parkway was only 45 mph, and we made a lot of stops. As a result, we only made it to a little bit past Knoxville, TN, and spent the night at a Walmart parking lot somewhere between Knoxville and Chattanooga.

Patsy had gotten a phone call on Monday that her dad had been admitted to the ICU at the hospital in Victoria. After a few phone calls with her sister, she made the decision that she was going home.
We got up early on Tuesday morning, and drove hard for Red Bay, and arrived at about noon. As soon as we got set up at the campground, Patsy and I took the CRV and I drove her to Memphis, TN where we met our daughter, Deanne. Patsy and Deanne will be driving to Victoria to help with Patsy's dad's recovery.
I will be staying in Red Bay to get the warranty work done. At this time, we don't know if Patsy will be coming back, or if I will be driving home alone.

Driving the Area Around NYC

On Saturday, our plan was to take the car and drive around the New York City area. We woke up to a cold, rainy day, so the plan was a good one........... at least driving was better than walking in the rain. This was our last day in NYC, so we wanted to make the best of it.

We left Jersey City, NJ, and headed south and crossed the Bayonne Bridge and eventually found ourselves on Long Island. We headed to the beach area, and found Coney Island. It was fairly deserted, and reminded us of Galveston during the winter months. We did find "Nathan's", home of the famous Coney Island Hot Dogs, and the hot dog eating contest. We stopped for lunch, so we could say we had a 'coney'!! Here are some pictures":

Later, we drove around and saw a little of the fall foilage color. Here are some of what we saw:

We also drove around some of the Brooklyn neighborhoods and looked at some of the housing architecture:

We wrapped up our day by driving back into NYC for the East. We got a view of the city from Brooklyn, and crossed the Brooklyn Bridge to go back into the city. Here are some views from Brooklyn, as well as pictures of the 'cabs' that are all over the streets........... a special challange when it is raining.

Friday, October 24, 2008

NYC Wrap-up -- Chinatown & Little Italy

On Friday, Connie and Manuel moved out of the park and to a town about 15 miles away to visit and stay with a cousin of Manuel, who is going to show them New York City. Since Patsy and I will be leaving on Sunday morning, we are finishing up our visit. Today, the plan was to visit Chinatown and Little Italy.

On the way to Chinatown, we saw St. Paul's Chapel and the adjacent cementary. We noticed a sign that said the church was pre-revolutionary. Patsy also recognized that this was the church fence were the flowers, ribbons and pictures of lost people were posted during the 911 incident. We decided to walk inside, and they had become essentially a museum of 911, with many displays of items from the 911 time period. Here are some pictures:

It turned out that George Washington attended this church, and they had his pew on display:

We then walked around the Chinatown area. It was unique.......... a lot of fish markets, fruit and vegetable stands on the sidewalks, and stores with cheap stuff............ made in China!!!! Here is a pictorial, and the last picture is a fire station in chinatown:

Right next to Chinatown was Little Italy. In contrast, Little Italy, had the sidewalks full of restaurant tables and people eating. There were also Italian stores with clothing, and ethnic foods.......... especially cheeses and meats.

Patsy and I also had a nice lunch in Little Italy, but at an indoor "garden" restaurant because it was too cool to eat outside.

We also knew that our favorite specialty grocery store, Trader Joe's, had two stores listed on 14th Avenue, almost next door to each other. We went by to check it out. The deal was that one of them was a wine store.......... and they almost had the famous "two buck chuck"!!! Here's proof:

We know that the Trader Joe's chain is popular, but here, they had 18 checkout stations operating, and they had two guys at the back of the store holding signs telling people which line to get in for checkout!! The line went half way across the front of the store, all the way along a side wall, and then almost all the way across the back of the store! Waiting time had to be 30--45 minutes!!!!