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Old 08-25-2008, 09:53 PM   #1
JoanW
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Maryland to Massachusetts, Without Killing Each Other

We have a road trip friends, and we made it home safe and sound.

Our Mantra for this trip "You're My Favorite".

Cast of Characters in Order of Appearance:

Me, Joan, almost stinkin 50 years old, The Passporter of the Family, Lover of All Road Trips and Vacations, and FAB's, no matter where they come from! Is in search of Really Big Things, Good Hot Dogs and homemade Ice Cream and As Seen on TV things.
DH Pat, age 63, HATES to travel for business or pleasure, would much rather stay at home, says he'll go anyway as long as we are having fun, would never think of organizing or taking a spontaneous trip. I envy those who's spouses can do this for them.
DD Grace, age 17.5, a senior in high school, loves to travel, hates really long road trips more than 10 hours in the car, is willing to go on any trip as long as we find a hot dog, ice cream, shopping, and a clean rest room.
DD Rachel, age 16, loves to travel if she can be the copilot and cringes when her father drives, HATES shopping, well, mostly waiting for us to finish our shopping cause she gets her stuff immediately and then taps her foot waiting.

Purpose: We have a wedding to attend (Pat’s friends – law enforcement types and EMT/Firemen) in East Sandwich, Massachusetts (on Cape Cod), and I have family living very close to Cape Cod - my late mom’s sister in fact, and two of her children, my cousins Betsy and Mary Katherine and their spouses and kids. Rachel loves to say we are going to Sandwich. Not a verb, but a noun. Normally this is the weekend we drive or fly to Michigan for Cheeseburger in Paradise Festival for camping and family fun but this invitation came in the mail in January, so the planning began early.

Mode of Transportation: My BIL’s Mercury Monterey minivan, which has waaaay less mileage than my SUV, AND, a key point here people, captains chairs for both the parental units and the Children of the Corn. Rachel tends to sit EXTRA close in the car to whoever is stuck next to her and she can be annoying as a seatmate. She's my youngest, but I admit to thinking of putting her on the roof rack after several hours of "she's touching me". "You're My Favorite".

Plans: Drive to cousin Betsy’s house, spend the night on Thursday. Visit, look around, and then drive to Cape Cod for a wedding. Drive back to Betsy’s on Sunday, lounge, swim, visit. Drive to Boston on Monday for some sightseeing. Depart for Maryland on Tuesday. Find Big Things, Hot Dogs, Ice Cream, and shop.

Preparations: Microsoft Trips and Tips, GPS prepped and ready, study www.Roadsideamerica.com for Really Big Things; Watch PBS’ The Hot Dog Show and an Ice Cream Story, check website via PBS for locations along our route for famous snackage and treats. Book Boston Duck Tour and tour of Fenway Park. Print out list of Cracker Barrels along I-95 on north east corridor.

Day 1 - August 14, 2009


The original plan was to leave around 9 am on Thursday. I took the day off, and requested that Pat do that as well. Well, we can’t have a plan without changes, and this is a big one. Pat has decided to quit his job and go out on his own. I’m dealing with this the best that I can, but, he has to go to a training seminar for his new job the week we are leaving. And I find out the week before we are to go. Okay, I made adjustments, email the cousins, and then Pat finds out he doesn’t have to go on Thursday at all. However, Grace now has a job interview at noon based on his training hours. So we think we are going to leave at 1, but nooo. We leave closer to 2:15. So while we wait for Grace, I at least stop at the grocery to get the important stuff, Triscuits, Wheat Thins, Easy Cheese, Tastycakes and Crab Chips for the cousins, and Special K Bars. We load up the van and the cooler, and Wagons Ho. Four suitcases, two aerobeds, four pillows and enough electronics to light up a small nation later, we were on I-95. And I am the pilot of this leg of the trip, and I am behind the wheel!


I've had a Venti Iced Skinny Vanilla Latte!

Napping in Maryland. We kept checking for breathing. Till the snoring started. And the laughing from the back seat.


I've had a few Pepsi Max's!


She's not touching anyone, yet. But texted the entire trip.

Our route is to follow I-95 from Baltimore to Massachusetts, then I-195 to Marion, Massachusetts to my cousin’s house on the first day. The ride went pretty smooth – I was driving. I tend to put the pedal to the metal and we were flying up 95. But not without a first rest stop north of Baltimore, before we hit Delaware (I swear, the girls have TBS – tiny bladder syndrome). Refreshed, we head out again, and make it to New Jersey. We find a Wawa off the beaten path and are back on track. By now it’s 5:00 ish. We are getting closer to the Newark Airport area, and it is starting to get dark and cloudy. Pretty soon, the heavens open up and big rain comes. And more big rain. And we are crawling at a snail’s pace, because it was rush hour and people are afraid of rain. Two hours later, we are out of New Jersey and are in New York looking for, yet again, another place to “rest”. We find a questionable gas station in Mamaroneck, NY because Grace is about to explode from all the Pepsi Max’s she’s been drinking. We head back to the car, and I take the cooler away from her. We find a Cracker Barrel up in Milford, Connecticut that we stop and get dinner, at 8:30 at night.

We don’t have a local Cracker Barrel, so we try to find at least one per Road Trip. The meal was good, reliable and pretty quick. I had a Reuben and fries. Grace got the Fried Chicken Salad, and Rachel got a cheeseburger deluxe. Pat got a big burger type steak with the sweet potato casserole for his side. Grace was the only one to get dessert, which was the apple dumpling alamode. I had eaten too many Triscuits and Easy Cheese while sitting in NJ in the rain, stress eating. So I knew I’d already attained my fat and carb intake of the day/week.

At this point I gave up the keys to the car and let Pat drive since we were more than 3/4ths of the way there. I also opted to give Grace a break and let her sit in the copilot seat and sat in the back. However, I could not see the Speed-O-meter to see if Pat was keeping up with my track record and feared we’d get there the next day! I called my cousin from the car to let her know we were mid Connecticut and would be entering Rhode Island. She estimated our arrival AFTER 12:30 pm, especially if Pat were driving. I called her once we passed Providence, as it means we are 50 minutes from her house. No one answered, so I thought they’d passed out or gone to bed. The GPS was just glowing in the car.

We pulled into Betsy’s drive right at midnight, way earlier than she predicted. Betsy and her son Max, age 15, and their enthusiastic dogs Leo and Donough greeted us. Her husband was already in bed, as was their daughter Sara, and son James was spending the night at a friends to watch a marathon of Star Wars. Exhausted, we all went right to bed, once an aerobed was inflated for Rachel.

Today the weather was: Sunny and warm through Maryland, raining in New Jersey, cloudy in New York, sporadic rain through Connecticut and Rhode Island and clear through to Massachusetts.
The best thing about today was: We were on the road!
The worst thing about today was: Getting a late start and then sitting in the rain on I-95 for two hours in New Jersey.
The funniest thing about today was: Having a little too much caffeine from midday to evening, which caused a little too much random thoughts said out loud.
Today we tried: Keeping the keys away from Pat so we could get there in record time.
And the result was: Good, except for the rain delay.
The most magical moment today was: Reminiscing some of our other road trips from south to north as a family and telling my stories of road trips as a kid, and I survived!

Total Miles Driven Today: 445
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Old 08-25-2008, 11:01 PM   #2
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Great start my friend -- and what is this about MOUSEFEST???? I get to see you again????? WOO HOO!!!!
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Old 08-25-2008, 11:42 PM   #3
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more please
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Old 08-26-2008, 12:40 AM   #4
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Day 2, August 15

Pat and I sleep in a little, and we hear Betsy and her daughter leaving for work at 7:30. Betsy works in New Bedford, where her sister and her mother live (my Aunt Betty), Sara is a lifeguard at a pond (we don’t have that form of water near us). I get up and read a note telling us about coffee fixings (yeah!) and she made us muffins, and a note to her kids not to eat them all before we get up. Betsy’s husband Jimmy grabs a quick Gatorade for breakfast (uh, ewwww, and he’s a dentist!) and heads out the door. Max and the dogs greet me, and we chat. Finally my family starts to saunter downstairs, and we make plans to have a look-see around town. According to my Mattapoisett, MA - Seahorse research, there’s a really big Seahorse in the next town over. Aunt Betty’s already called to make sure we arrived and announces she’ll be over by noon with lunch (lobstah rolls). Max says that means 2:00 ish. She was my mom’s only sister, and she’s 82 and is still driving! Max’s older brother James came home from his maration of Star Wars movies.

So we head east on Route 6 to Mattapoisett and are able to find the big Seahorse.

And who would possibly be along for the ride? Why my Traveling Gnome, of course! So we drive around a little, noticing that there’s not much around this town, or the one Betsy and family live in. Out on the highway I’m sure we got some stares from the locals while posing with Big Seahorse.






It says Dunview Gardens. The maintenance/landscaping crew must be on vacation.

Rachel does not see the need to participate in my quest for Really Big Things. She did not get out of the car for this event, nor last year’s search for World’s Largest Rubber Stamp we found in Cleveland, Ohio. Party pooper. She texted while she waited for us in the car. I should give her Caldercup’s #, as we’ve seen in the CLT’s report how much she texts now!

We returned to the van and started driving back to Betsy’s to await Aunt Betty’s arrival. Max told us to steer clear of the driveway, she’s taken out a tree or two. And a car.

Betsy arrived shortly after we did and then finally around 1:45ish, Aunt Betty arrived, with the Lobstah Rolls. The girls had never had one before, so they were happy to try them. Betsy’s kids only like “good” lobster rolls, so they wouldn’t eat the ones AB brought, they only like them from the local shack down by the water. I have to say these were a little heavy on the mayonnaise side. I did not take any photos as I had left my camera in the car. We had already packed up what we needed for two nights on the Cape, so our plan was to leave by 3:30 to get across the Bourne Bridge to Cape Cod. It’s only a 20 minute ride, but Friday traffic could mean a two hour back up. Our goal was to get checked in, check out the area, perhaps get in a swim and then go to group dinner with Pat’s friends.

The girls had a nice time with their cousins and AB. We got on the road by 3:30 and there was a little back up, but we made it across the bridge and were at our hotel by 4:00.




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Old 08-26-2008, 02:05 AM   #5
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Great start Joan - and I'm glad to see the gnome travelling with you!
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:26 AM   #6
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Nice start!
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Old 08-26-2008, 09:52 AM   #7
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Great start Joan!! More please
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:13 AM   #8
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Great start Joan.
Did you like the lobstah rolls? I think they are the nastiest things ever created.
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:52 AM   #9
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Great start Joan!!!
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Old 08-26-2008, 11:15 AM   #10
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Old 08-26-2008, 08:06 PM   #11
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Great start Joan!! You could have stopped here - we have a Cracker Barrel of few miles away and I would have treated !!!
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:29 PM   #12
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Sounds like fun. Traveling with teenagers. Love Cracker Barrel, but gets me in trouble around the waist line.
If you want really good homemade ice cream in MD, try Blooms Broom Dairy in Bel Air. It is on route 543 off of I-95. OMG, It is one of the few things I miss since moving. Broom's Bloom Dairy | Bel Air, MD | Farm-made Old Fashioned Ice Cream
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:35 PM   #13
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Sounds like fun. Traveling with teenagers. Love Cracker Barrel, but gets me in trouble around the waist line.
If you want really good homemade ice cream in MD, try Blooms Broom Dairy in Bel Air. It is on route 543 off of I-95. OMG, It is one of the few things I miss since moving. Broom's Bloom Dairy | Bel Air, MD | Farm-made Old Fashioned Ice Cream

Oh that looks wonderful. I printed out some info to keep in the car!
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My Previous Trips1989 - My Very First Trip to the Mouse ~ 1997 - My First Trip to Disneyland ~ 2003 - My Very First Disney Cruise and Staying Onsite ~ 2005 - The Big Trip v2005 - A Second Cruise and a Third Trip to the Mouse~ 2008 - Mousefest and Turning 5-0, Tiaras v.1.0! 2009 - Sousefest, Tiaras v.2.0! 2010 - Food, FABs, Friends, Tiaras v3.0
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Old 08-26-2008, 10:36 PM   #14
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Great start Joan!! You could have stopped here - we have a Cracker Barrel of few miles away and I would have treated !!!
I'm sorry we missed that! I guess it's a good thing we can only eat there when we travel. Their food is pretty tasty!
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My Previous Trips1989 - My Very First Trip to the Mouse ~ 1997 - My First Trip to Disneyland ~ 2003 - My Very First Disney Cruise and Staying Onsite ~ 2005 - The Big Trip v2005 - A Second Cruise and a Third Trip to the Mouse~ 2008 - Mousefest and Turning 5-0, Tiaras v.1.0! 2009 - Sousefest, Tiaras v.2.0! 2010 - Food, FABs, Friends, Tiaras v3.0
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Old 08-27-2008, 09:41 AM   #15
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I'm sorry we missed that! I guess it's a good thing we can only eat there when we travel. Their food is pretty tasty!
Since we don't have any close by, we like to eat there, too! We would probably go to one once a week, if we could...
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