Friday, July 30, 2010

Home Again and Reflecting

"Best month of my life."
"Trip of a lifetime!"

Those are just a few ways Chris and I have described our month of traveling. How can I sum up a trip like we've had (before I even post pictures from it... which there are over 2000 so I am a bit baffled as to how to even post the pictures)?

29 days
12,000 miles
24 states (not counting the three states I went through on my way home from Colorado to Michigan before the trip even started)
14 Baseball games
15 Baseball parks
1 football stadium
8 bears
4 National Parks
27 friends and family members visited and/or included
COUNTLESS crazy and cultural cuisine throughout the trip

I tried mapping the skeletal route we took on mapquest but after 25 destinations they told me I had reached the limit of destinations for one map. When I tried to post my road trip maps, the images didn't paste correctly so I've spent about an hour online trying to map our route in a picture so I can post it but I've reached repeated dead ends... if you know of a great map-generating website where I can list more than 25 destinations to generate a map of America, please let me know.

I'm also not sure how to post our pictures - it kind of divides into three parts - New England, America's Heartland and Western Coast... but there are probably 600 pictures for each of those sections. Suggestions?

Best moments:
  • Getting a lesson in how to eat lobsters and clams on the coast of Maine
  • Watching Mario Rivera pitch in Yankee Stadium
  • A tour of Fenway Park by a tour guide who attended his first Red Socks game in 1934
  • Watching a game in AT&T Park in San Francisco complete with Seagull clean-up crew
  • Falling head over heals down a hill while trying to "use the facilities" near Yosemite National Park - and yes my pants were around my ankles at the time of the fall - and yes, it was LITERALLY a head over heels, backward somersaults tumble
  • Cheering for my four-year-old nephew while he ran the bases at Safeco Field after the Mariner's game
There were so many more awesome moments as well, but when Chris and I were ending the trip, those were the "Trip Bests" we compiled.

I have come to think that Chris and I were the perfect age and stage for this trip -- we're ADULTS who CAN take a crazy trip like this, we can pay for it, we were smart about it, we looked out for each other and were safe on the trip - we are adults who have this time off of work (both teachers) who can choose to take an awesome trip like this.

That being said, Chris and I are totally KIDS! What adults in their right minds take a crazy trip like this? We spent eight nights sleeping in the car! EIGHT NIGHTS! We both came home with poison ivy! We spent so much money this summer between the gas prices, baseball tickets, food that we consumed (we brought a lot of food with us throughout the trip, but we wanted to experience the cuisine of all the areas we visited as well), the postcards I bought... Adults don't spend summer months like we did.

All in all, I would do it again tomorrow! I would do it again next summer. I would take a different trip, the same trip, any trip with Chris again.

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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Adventures Coast to Coast

Where I am: Sitting in a small town restaurant in Crescent City, CA (I definately just started typing that sentence and had to ask our waitress where we are before I could finish it).

Where I've been: EVERYWHERE: (Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa before the trip started,) Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Connecticut, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, California... so far

What I've done: Thirteen baseball games in different stadiums (two were cut due to travel logistics) and amazing activities all along the way including but not limited to: New York City traffic, visiting family I haven't seen in years, touring Fenway Park, Fourth of July in small town Freeport Maine, shopping at LL Bean, chasing crabs and catching lobsters in the Atlantic Ocean, eating cheesesteaks in Phillie, a diner in Southern Missouri that throws hot dinner rolls at you, a steakhouse in Amarillo Texas that challenges you to eat a 72oz steak and sides in an hour and you get it free, Petrified Wood National Park, sliding down a natural rock water slide in a river in Arizona, surprising my grandmother in Phoenix, a wine tour in Southern California, eating a sundae in Ghirardelli Square, watching eight bears (four of them cubs) in Sequoia National Park, zipping into Yosemite National Park, driving through a tree, falling down a hill while trying to go to the bathroom, watching Elk graze in Redwood National Park, dipping my toes in the Pacific Ocean, watching seals sun themselves on docks in Northern California, feeding seagulls the cheerios we hadn't eaten the whole trip... we've also spent seven nights sleeping in the car... one night in Ohio, two in a row along Route 66, FOUR in a row in California (that was rough)... and we'll be in the car again tonight.

What's next: Visiting my brother and his family in Seattle and another baseball game and then the road trip from Seattle back to the center of the country...

When my brother heard we had slept in the car for four nights in a row he said, "Well, Brooke, you're in luck. We have an extra car so you and Chris can each have your own cars to sleep in while you're here."

My dinner is here and we've got to get back on the road. Look for more regular posts about the trip when it's over next week.

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Monday, July 5, 2010

Baseball Park Progress

I found a website that shows my ballpark progress. (The baseballs are the parks I've visited...)

So far my trip has included games in Pittsburgh, New York (Yankees), Fenway Park (Boston), New York (Mets), Philadelphia and Chicago (White Sox). In addition to those stops, Chris and I saw various family and friends along the way (my cousins, his aunt and uncle, my parents, his parents and each of our friends) and had a great day along the coast of Maine.

This marks roughly the first 1/3 of our trip -- coming up are Texas games and family, Southwestern travel, driving the length of California, family in Seattle and a few National Parks.

Bittersweet news -- Chris was offered a job the other day!!! PRAISE GOD! Now the bitter park - he needs to report for the year on August 3. We're supposed to spend time with my parents August 1-6... so we're hoping and praying that maybe there will be some flexibility with that date...

That's the quick update from my trip. I might have internet tonight that I can post a few pictures from this first round of travel. We are having a great time. Every time my mom calls, she asks if Chris and I are still on speaking terms -- we are. :-D

I hope your summer is going as well as mine.

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