Wednesday, November 5, 2008
On The Road Again...Part I
Some of you may have noticed that I have been absent from the blog a little more than usual recently. While there is no excuse for it, I must defend myself by saying that in between my birthday and a busy work week recently, I also managed to sneak in a short trip weekend to Montreal. While I wouldn't call it a vacation because of it's length, my brief road trip was indeed filled with excellent adventures (thanks to my travelling buddy Gloria), good times and, of course, obscene amounts of food. Really, really, really good food. For a trip that was four years in the making it began with relatively little planning. Other than a hotel room, some rudimentary directions, and a few tips from friends, we had very little to go on. But, we forged ahead nonetheless, conquering the road and enjoying the vast scenery before us, knowing that once we arrived at our destination, we'd know exactly where to go, and more importantly, exactly where to eat.
The trip began as many do for us long-time city dwellers, with the sudden reminder that not only do trees still exist, they actually change color too (and good lord, had I forgotten how breathtaking they can be). As we started out in our quest up the great state up New York, through the Hudson Valley, and eventually across the border into Canada, the trees were green with intermittent pops of crimson and coral against a bright blue sky. A small detour through the lovely town of Poughkeepsie (i.e.--that hour and a half when we were lost) gave us an especially intimate look at what New York is like outside of the city. I'd forgotten what it was like pull down a car visor to block the sun, or what it felt like to wait miles and miles before finding a spot to eat (or pee, or stretch), or that sinking feeling that appears when you realize you're driving down an unfamiliar winding forest road.
The sky was a clear for miles over the horizon and the sun was an unrelenting shower of warm amber light. It was just the right time of year for the sun to conquer the cold, making it a sweaty ride despite the slightly frigid temperature outside. As we meandered our way through mountains and around gorgeous lakes, the burnt sienna and orange tones of fall overpowered the green of summer. As day turned to night and we neared the Canadian border we began to see French creep onto the road signs. Before we knew it we were waiting in line to cross over, and shortly thereafter we were drinking steins of beer with the locals and snacking on sauteed spinach with pancetta and portobello mushrooms. Our first full day in Montreal would involve 4 meals, a foray onto the local transportation system and a great deal of wine. Stay tuned for photos, stories, and some great tips on where to go in Montreal.