Continued from NY forum
We drove around the town centre of Burlington and its position right by Lake Champlain made it a very pleasant town with a lot of young people about with a University on the top of a hill. From Burlington we headed NE to Jeffersville to make our way to Stowe via Smugglers’ Notch. Well we got as far the road into the notch but the road was closed due to snow which you could see on the mountains. Best plans foiled we went round the long way and finally got to Stowe. A charming but busy town and of course arriving late on the Saturday meant not a big choice of accommodation for the night. The friendly guy at the tourist office got us in to the Grey Fox Inn which proved to be very suitable. We headed out of town to see the Von Trapp complex and it had a superb location overlooking a valley to distant hills. Almost had me singing a song from the movie.
The starting price to stay here was $250 and if you didn’t have a car you were at their mercy. In the gift shop (W’s idea) I noticed that Herr Von Trapp had wrote a book about his war experiences. He was a U-Boat commander during WW I. I wondered how much allied shipping he sunk and lives lost. Hmm – not so wunderbar. We then went further up the mountain and checked out the ski slope which had some snow cover and a few keen snowboarders were doing their stuff.
Day 19 Sunday 18 October
From Stowe we started our journey south and travelled along highway 100 which skirted the Green Mountains. Hills covered in colour all the way – a very nice drive and onto Rutland for some lunch then onwards on route 7 to Bennington. I was struck by the massive monument driving into town and set the GPS to get us to it. It was truly impressive and was a monument to a battle beating the British at a critical time during the War of Independence. The avenue leading to the monument had glorious autumn trees and made for the prefect framed shot of the monument.
We crossed over into MA and the Berkshires – a very British name and it appeared every business anywhere near the area claimed Berkshire in its shop front. The rain started that afternoon and it was about the wettest of the trip and after the Berkshires we were soon into Connecticut and the Litchfields. We stopped at Kent as it read as a good arty stop in the area but found that we couldn’t get a room anywhere in town. One nice lady said to go 17 minutes further on to New Milford where there was a motel. We did and the Rocky River Motel had old rooms for $80 and new rooms for $95. I decided to treat W and went with the $95 room.
Well the spacious room was still brand new and was beautifully furnished and even had two handbasins in the bathroom. I think this gave W some bad ideas as now she’s talking about individual toilets at home. New Milford was quite a large town and while in a checkout line in ‘Big Y’ we asked the lady behind us where the post office was. Follow me she said and lead us over the bridge to the post office and what was the original street for the town complete with a white chuch with steep triangular steeple – your classic New England town as seen in the movies. Not to mention the large autumn trees that stretched right up the hill to an expensive looking school surrounded by very expensive looking homes.
Day 20 Monday 19 October
Overnight the weather had cleared to a perfect day and we proceeded to Bridgeport with the idea of getting the ferry (I’d noticed the dotted line on the map across the sound) to Long Island. We arrived just before the ferry left which was lucky as otherwise it was a 1.5hr wait for the next one. We had a very pleasant trip across Long Island Sound to Fort Jefferson or Fort Jeff as it’s known. Then to explore Long Island.
We headed East surprised at the suburban expansion so far from New York City. After Riverhead we finally got to the farm part of the island and on the northern fork there were numerous grapevines and wineries. We stopped at Greenport and spotted a few seafood restaurants on the waterfront. I was really looking forward to a big bowl of chowder but discovered that all the restaurants were closed for the season. We ferried over to Shelter Island and Sag Harbour where there were some magnificent homes. Then to East Hampton.
Well what a disappointment – I’d heard about the Hamptons but East Hampton was just a long main street backed by large homes on large blocks. The speed limit here was 25mph and there were signs in English and Latin threatening to cut your nuts off you exceeded this tortoise speed limit. (Okay they were in English only but you’ll get the idea of what the place was like)
We now headed west to the other Hamptons and started looking for somewhere to stay for the night. I thought Westhampton Beach might be a good place to stay. Well Dune street had some lovely looking hotels but they were all closed for the season and you couldn’t even get to the beach to see what it looked like. Hmm. Things were starting to look a little grim for that night. I was by now starving, running out of fuel, running out of light and dying for a pee. A very bad combination. I headed inland knowing that I’d strike something sooner or later but went on for miles with the fuel gauge hovering on empty. Finally we stumbled on a service (gas) station next door to a Maccas. This solved our immediate problems so I asked the GPS for the nearest accommodation. It lead us to a Best Western near Riverhead for the night and it hadn’t closed for the season.
Next morning it looked as if Long Island had it in for me – I went to flush the toilet and the water and toilet contents decided not to go down and in a panic I flushed again only to have the water heading steadily upwards to the rim. I mangaged to turn the water supply off just before it all went over the floor.
Time get our of this place and head to the big city.
Continued in NY NYC forum