Wednesday, September 22, 2010

19 - In My Footsteps Trip - September 21-22, 2010

Initial Impressions
Christopher Setterlund

In My Footsteps Trip:  September 21-22, 2010

1.      1. My first overnight trip.  Stayed at a nice little motel in New London, NH called The Lamplighter Inn.
2.      2.  The traffic heading north out of Boston was nothing short of hell, we need flying cars ASAP.
3.      3.  Once you pass through Concord the drive on I-89 is out of this world.  I am surprised I wasn’t killed staring off at the green mountains.
4.      4.  My stay at the Lamplighter was the first time I have ever received a ‘perk’ for being a travel writer, half off my room.  Glad my writing is good or else maybe I’d have been charged double.
5.      5.   I was also told that if I return to the area that the motel owner knows some folks in Sunapee who might give me a similar deal.  Oh yeah, life gets sweeter every day.
6.      6.  I loved New London, a small town postcard for sure, lots of bull statues painted various colors, did not seem out of place at all.
7.      7.  Passed through Sunapee to get to Newport, again it was like something out of a brochure or magazine.  I can’t stress enough how great this trip was.
8.      8.  Found 1 of the 2 covered bridges I was looking for in Newport.  First, it had a damn porta-potty next to the entrance, nice photos.  Then I ended up so far in the middle of nowhere looking for the other one that my GPS literally was just a blank screen with my car in the middle.
9.      9.  A walk down the Main Street of Newport was like being lost in time, I think I took photos of every building.  There is an amazing mural of old Newport on the side of a building which I wish I could have stolen, I mean bought legally.
10.  10.  Nothing is cooler than a McDonalds with mountains all around it, well unless it’s a Dunkin’ Donuts that is literally someone’s house.
11.  11.  The highways had no cops and loads of hills, this made for NASCAR speeds by me.
12.  12.  Driving along the Merrimack River made me realize how small Bass River is.  Like a Great Dane next to a Chihuahua.
13.  13.  The State House in Concord was incredible.  Even the little boy banging a bell with his hands from underneath it was cool.  You know what’s not cool though?  Parking meters.  They suck.
14.  14.  Although, these meters had a credit card slot, and you could choose your time.  So they were a cool sort of suck I guess.
15.  15.  There were a lot of apple trees, I didn’t dare eat one, or taken any home, I need my preservatives.
16  16.  Visited the grave and home of the 14th President Franklin Pierce.  It was neat to see a former president’s grave, but I don’t think he is famous for anything really, is he?
17.  17.  Saw the coolest baseball field at White Park in Concord.  It is the home of the Sunset Baseball league organized in 1909, brick dugouts, too cool.
18.  18.  Even cooler was the mother letting her son lay in a mud puddle while she smoked.  White shirt, ruined, she didn’t care though, stay classy white trashy.
19.  19.  There is a science center named for astronaut Christa McAuliffe who died in the Challenger explosion.  It was a nice place and great that she is remembered like that.
20.  20.  2 towers in Manchester.  1 I had to walk to because the road was closed, and then it was surrounded by an iron fence.  The other one I got to see but they forgot to mention it was on the grounds of a veteran’s hospital.  Yeah, I got more than a few awkward stares from those folks.
2    21.   Red Arrow Diner in Manchester, it f’n rules.  There are labels on the counter where famous people sat.  I sat at Sarah Silverman’s seat.  Adam Sandler had his own burger.  Bison burger for me, and some world famous chili.
22.  22.  It was a true diner experience, everyone who sat down talked to me.  It was like Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, especially with the autographed Guy Fieri photo on the wall.
23.  23.  Manchester even has horse cops, no, on horseback, the cops are not horses, although that would be cool.
24.  24.  In total the damage was 450 miles, $40 in gas, 3 hours 15 minutes to New London, don’t know how long to get home since I did a lot of stopping. 
25.  25.  Have chugged 2 liters of Gatorade and am ready to pass out.
26.  26.  Huge week long trip to Maine starts next Friday, I love doing this, obviously.

Quote of the Day:  “We have your number and we’re going to call the cops.”  Waitress at the Red Arrow Diner to a customer that called in a ‘to go’ order and failed to pick it up for 2 ½ hours.  He then bitched them out because they wouldn’t make him new food.  The idiot sent his daughter in to pick it up once ‘cops’ were mentioned.

Photo Of the Day:

New London, NH
The Train Mural in Newport, NH
The State Capitol in Concord
Merrimack River from Notre Dame Bridge in Manchester

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

18 - September 15, 2010

Initial Impressions
Christopher Setterlund

September 15, 2010

1.      1.  Took a really nice trip up to Provincetown to visit their lighthouses today.  5 miles of total walking on the sand and breakwater.  Wood End Light, Race Point Light, and Long Point Light(I was too tired to hike the extra 4 miles each way).
2.      2.  Met a nice lady on the walk back to my car from Race Point Light on the Province Lands bike path.  It was a nice long talk which ended when she asked me if I would like to read a book on Jesus.  She didn’t push too hard but still not exactly where I wanted to take a first conversation.
3.      3.  Oh yeah and it was a much nicer walk out there today on the bike path rather than going through the ice cold water in winter.  I mean, what kind of idiot does that?  Oh wait…
4.      4.  What do you think of that guy Vince and his Slap Chop?  Wasn’t he arrested for doing that to a hooker?  Slapping and chopping?  He looks like a weasel though for sure.
5.      5.  One of our dishwashers I swear is actually two 8 year olds dressed up in a man costume.  He squeals and giggles like a child so much that it is hard not to think that.
6.      6.  I keep wondering how that Education Connection website has not been shut down.  Every ad of their features a different website which absolutely screams ‘scam.’  Same goes for that Free Credit site as well.
7.      7.  By the way just saw that I am totally burned after my walks today.   September sun burns aren’t that common, might be my first, that fact doesn’t make it any less painful though.
8.      8.  I am trying to get 5-Hour Energy to sponsor my travels considering that I use their product all the time it sort of fits.
9.      9.  Root Beer Vodka is a great investment.  Though it did leave me with a headache all day today which made my traveling a little less enjoyable.  Still, it was delicious.
10.  10.  Daisuke Matsuzaka and a prospect to the Dodgers for Andre Ethier?  I will help Dice-K pack and drive him to the airport once it’s done.
11.  11.  Hey New York Jets, you will not win the Super Bowl, will not get to the Super Bowl, or AFC Title Game, you are severely overrated, get used to being 9-7 chumps.
12.  12.  It figures that the first overnight trip I plan to New Hampshire might get postponed due to rain.  What am I supposed to do, rent a room ahead of time and waste money, or drive up the day of and find no vacancies?  Oh yeah great choices.
13.  13.  Hypothetically, what do you do when you meet someone that makes your whole world brighter but there is a huge roadblock keeping you from being together?  Hypothetically speaking of course.
14.  14.  My idea of buying an RV and traveling the country went up in flames as soon as I saw prices.  Most were over 100 grand, damn!  I’d rather take the bus, oh wait, maybe not.
15.  15.  Should I or should I not buy a hammock for my room?  Leaning toward I should.
16.   16.  How long do you stay in a situation where you don’t feel appreciated?  I will say this, we will find out soon, if the ‘appreciation’ doesn’t come by about Christmas this ‘situation’ will be ending.

Quote of the Day:  "The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather in a lack of will." Vince Lombardi  

Do You Remember?:  When cereals used to have the word sugar in them?  Sugar Pops Commercial

Song of the DayCall On Me - Chicago

Photo of the Day:

Teacher, mother, secret lover...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

17 - In My Footsteps Trip - 9-8-2010

Initial Impressions
Christopher Setterlund

17 – In My Footsteps Trip
September 8, 2010

1.       I visited the North Shore for the 3rd time today.  Hit Beverly, Peabody, Marblehead, and Swampscott.  I will never get tired of that place.
2.      Was worried most of the way up since it was raining, but in the end it was good since it washed my dirty car.
3.      Need to ask 5 Hour Energy to become a sponsor of my travels.  I now depend on it for my increasingly long drives.
4.      Today I ended up going about 240 miles, $20 of gas.
5.      Got to photograph the Witch House in Salem on my way up, from the car of course, but since I didn’t see it before I can now add it to my collection.
6.      Beverly was actually an easy town to shoot since most of the historic homes were on Cabot Street.  This was good since the rain caused traffic which caused my drive up to take longer, boo.
7.      I bet everyone has bitten the inside of their mouths before, right?  I like chewing gum but honestly I did it twice in the same spot today and it was pretty intense pain.  Maybe I am going cannibal subconsciously.
8.      Lynch Park in Beverly is amazing.  There is an unreal rose garden which I filmed.  There are tons of beech trees too and some statue of a guy with a falcon which probably means something.
9.      Made sure not to stand on the cliff wall at Hospital Point Light this time, did it before, quite dangerous, 50 foot fall.  I told a lady there I did travel writing and she watched me take my shots, hanging over fences and stuff.  Too bad she was old or maybe she could have been my groupie.
10.  At the Smith-Felton Historic Site in Peabody some guy started yelling that I was on private property even though there were signs for parking and such.  He asked who I was with and I said ‘nobody.’  He waited for me to leave but I was nice about it since he might read my writing someday, but honestly he was a jackass.
11.  Brooksby Farm in Peabody was great.  A real working farm with animals.  I got to watch a snoring pig which was funny.  There was also a rogue chicken who escaped his pen, he was trying to get back in through the chain link while the others laughed and talked trash.  I ratted him out to the farmers and they said that chicken always escapes.
12.  I got back together with an old love today, Chick-fil-A.  Haven’t had it in 5 years since I lived in Florida.  That was part of my reason to go to Peabody.  Too bad it was in the Northshore Mall.  Had to go wander the mall to the food court but it was worth it.  Plus I am going to email the president of Chick-fil-A and ask him to put one in the Cape Cod Mall since the same folks own the Northshore Mall.
13.  Saw a sign for Bill & Bob’s Famous Roast Beef in Peabody.  I swear we had one here years ago.  What is Peabody like the U.N. of fast food?  They also have a Sonic so I am not far off.
14.  It was like Dazed and Confused heading out to Marblehead Light as wave after wave of high school girls ran past my car.  I get older but they stay the same age. 
15.  At Fort Sewall in Marblehead I was able to take a photo through the lens of binoculars.  I got a sick shot of a lighthouse out on an island.  I became more interested in doing that than checking out the fort, but that was cool too.
16.  By the way, who in the hell goes sunbathing at a fort?  Also, why sunbathe when it’s cloudy?  And lastly, why sunbathe if you are hideous?  Nobody’s gonna look, you’ll just be tan and hideous.  Hit the gym first then worry about your tan.
17.  I still say Abbot Hall in Marblehead looks a bit like the Penn Warehouse at the beginning of The Office.  Maybe it’s the shape of the tower, or maybe I just want it to look like it so bad that I am insane.
18.  Why build a cool castle if you won’t allow people inside?  I guess just to be jerks.  Thanks jerks who built the cool castle near Crocker Park but won’t let me trespass.  Hell with your privacy!
19.  Marblehead Light is awesome, it’s a skeleton.  Oh and someone spray painted a heart on it.  I am torn, on one hand it’s graffiti, but on the other hand it’s a heart and not some dumbass gang symbols. 
20.  Oh yeah and Marblehead is sort of like a corn maze with no corn.  Way too many one way streets, and narrow ones at that.  Who the hell designed that town?
21.  Swampscott is a nice place but did not have too much in the way of important sites.  It would be nice for a beach day but not for my articles.
22.  It was cool to find a random house I had seen on my Google Maps though, no significance, just a really cool design. 
23.  Did not buy a cooler to bring home some Sonic from Peabody.  Thought about it but why not save that for another trip.
24.  Oh and I sent all sorts of Facebook updates to my page, or so I thought.  Nothing like sending witty quips to nobody, waste of texting $, boo again.
25.  Found out I have multi-color lights in my car on the way home by accident.  It was like having a dance club in my car tonight.
26.  Might have to cut my trips from 4 towns to 3, just too much work, too little light, and way too many articles.
Quote of the Day: “Hey that’s private property.” –jackass at Smith-Felton Site in Peabody
                             “Yeah?  Then why are there signs for parking here?” –me
The guy just pouted and watched me get in my car.
Song of the Day: Misunderstanding – Genesis (because it played while I was temporarily lost in Marblehead…must be some misunderstanding, must be some kind of mistake, classic)
Photo of the Day:  The Rose Garden at Lynch Park in Beverly