I am so thankful my mother loves to travel, even at the age of 81! On Friday, April 20th she and I flew to New Jersey for a much overdue visit with family and friends, and to attend a very special wedding on Long Island. (Unfortunately EZ didn't join us on this trip because we were flying and he hasn't given that a try yet due to his inability to sit completely upright.) What a busy nine days we enjoyed! The scariest part for me was taking on the Garden State Parkway, the New Jersey Turnpike, the Verrazano Bridge and the Long Island Expressway in order to get to the wedding. As a North Carolinian, I was a total novice when it came to tolls, and never expected to pay $12.00 to cross a bridge, but we survived. More about that in my next post!
Upon arriving, my Aunt C.C. graciously picked us up at the ever busy Newark airport and took us to a beautiful area of West Orange that was very special to my parents when they were dating 67 years ago. Mom's family lived above a tavern that is no longer there, but I was able to see the place where it once stood, a mountain they would hike up as teenagers, the very trees they stood by in some of my favorite pictures of them, and an old concession stand Mom's family worked during the summer. It was definitely a walk down memory lane for my mom, and I loved hearing her talk about their adventures when they were young.
Next it was off to one of my aunt's favorite new restaurants on a reservoir nearby the park, called McLoone's Boathouse.
It was cool when we arrived, so the multiple fireplaces felt really good as they warmed the restaurant and created a wonderful ambiance. The picture above served as a mural on one of the walls and must have been a boathouse back in the old days.
This spot holds special meaning to C.C. and Mom as their grandfather planted the pine trees in the background of this next picture, taken on the deck of the restaurant.
You know I can't go out to eat without taking pictures of food, so here is a bacon/bleu cheese lettuce wedge, and half a delicious Reuben sandwich with fries. Which do you think I ate?