When I plan a road trip, I like to make it as silly as possible to keep it entertaining for the other passengers in the vehicle. I’ll plan stops at supposed vampire or witch grave sites, silly vintage statues or art works, or landmarks that you’ve always heard about, but have never seen. To me, these are what make a road trip worth taking and makes lasting memories to talk and laugh about for decades.
A few years ago, while my mother was battling lung cancer, my sisters and I decided we needed a Mother/ Daughter Road Trip to make some lasting memories. We hadn’t done anything like this for decades, since we all are married, have children and moved all over the country. Of course, I took on the task of planning the trip! I used two great websites and apps called https://roadtrippers.com/ as well as http://www.roadsideamerica.com/ . Our plan was to go to Cape Cod to take my mother on a real clambake, but we decided to see a lot more while on the road.
On Sept.2, 2013, we began our trip to New England by trying for a photo op at The Sloppy Giant with Ill Clad Clothing in Phoenxiville, Pa. We couldn’t find it. However, we did find Jode Rd and a random globe for the first pictures of the week.
Our second roadside photo op was at the Giant Steel Hockey Player in Newark, NJ. Mom and Jami were too afraid of the “ghetto” to get out of the car, but that wasn’t going to stop Jen and I. I mean we had driven all this way just to take a picture with it…. http://www.roadsideamerica.com/story/23432
After a few attempts at seeing Jeffrey’s Hook Lighthouse, otherwise known as The Little Red Lighthouse, http://www.nycgovparks.org/parks/fortwashingtonpark/monuments/810
taking a bathroom break for Jami(again in the ghetto) we decided to leave NYC and find something to eat.
We chose the old road trip standard, Cracker Barrel, where we were joined by the Mileys and the Short Bus Mileys. (Note- this was right after her tongue exposed VMA award performance)
Midnight Mary in New Haven, Ct, was our next stop. Mary Hart was a woman who was buried alive and thought to haunt the cemetery at midnight. We left her a penny, took some pictures and went on our way. http://www.damnedct.com/midnight-mary/
While in New Haven, Ct, we decided to crash a wedding at Lighthouse Park. We took some silly photos and searched for seashells. (photo to the right- Get it? I’m the little mermaid?!)
New Haven was also the home of the rather scary, gross Econo Lodge Motel where we spent our first night, I would not recommend it. The next morning, we got up early and headed out to visit Gillette Castle http://www.friendsofgillettecastle.org/which is gorgeous. The castle was the home of the original Sherlock Holmes and was quite eccentric which makes the tour very entertaining. We arrived too early, so stopped for some chai and coffee at Two Wrasslin Cats https://www.facebook.com/TwoWrasslinCats and toured Jami’s new favorite town, East Haddam, Ct
Once we arrived at Gillette Castle, Jami was a gracious host at her estate, inviting us in, doing some gardening and taking photos of forbidden closets.
After a brief stop at a Life Size T- Rex in Oakdale, Ct, we stopped at the Mohegan Sun Casino to spend some money.
Mystic, Ct was the next stop on our trip. We, first, stopped by Ford’s Lobsters, a Mystic Pizza Filming location, for some lobster rolls and a lobster stuffed avocado in the pouring rain.
After a drive by photo of the Stonington Lighthouse in Stonington, RI, we stopped by a Vampires Gravesite. Mercy Brown was thought to be a vampire, so was exhumed and her heart was made into a drink for her brother to drink to keep him from dying of the TB plague that was happening in Exeter, Ri in 1888. http://strangene.com/cemeteries/vampire.htm
The Fighting Seabee Statue in North Kingston was next on the photo agenda, as was the Warwick Neck Lighthouse and an attempt at seeing the Conimicut Lighthouse.
The Comfort Inn in Warwick, RI, was the best hotel on the trip. It was clean and had a bar downstairs, where Jami and Jen, in their infinite wisdom kept the drinks coming. Not only did mother not appreciate it, apparently neither did Jodi’s histamines.
The next morning we drove by TAPS(ghosthunters) for a photo.
The next morning, we intended to take a tour of the Lizzie Borden Bed and Breakfast, but only did a quick drive by of the front. We, then, headed to Battleship
Cove to look at the water “and wait for our long lost loves to come home”
Finally to the “tip of the Cape”!
We found some stones lying on the beach and enjoyed a meal before going to bed for the evening in rooms that smelled of cat pee and had splattered blood on the curtains. Ahhh the memories! Just a tip- You get what you pay for!
The next day was a rather gloomy day in February, but we were heading to Plimoth Plantation anyway! http://www.plimoth.org/ Luckily, we had the whole place to ourselves, so we could act as goofy and obnoxious as we wanted. We had some great conversations with some natives and also got to meet our 11th great grandfathers. Ok, well, actors who portrayed them! As a huge genealogy buff, I’ve traced us to 7 of the original settlers in Plimoth. We had a fun time talking family with the actors who never broke character, even when we brought up things that would happen to them in the future.
Next we went to see Plimoth Rock which at one time had been quite larger, but people kept chipping parts away for souvenirs, so now it is enclosed as well as take a picture of Governor Bradford’s statue, which has a crazy resemblance to our father.
Last on the agenda, was touring the Mayflower, where again as the only people on, we were able to take some funny pictures and annoy the actor.
Finally to our Clambake, the reason we chose New England! It was a rather cool, gloomy evening and mom was not feeling too well, but it still was an awesome experience. And if you ever decide to go, I would not recommend trying to save money by choosing the vegetarian option.! http://bostonsbestcruises.com/clambake-at-sunset
We visited a few more places before heading back to Pennsylvania; The Salem Witch Museum http://www.salemwitchmuseum.com/ and the House of the Seven Gables http://www.7gables.org/. Both were interesting tours.
Overall, our trip to Cape Cod, Boston and Salem was an awesome Mother/Daughter Road Trip with lots of laughter until tears streamed down our faces and we were doubled over in pain. We will always have lots of memories of our awful hotels, sneaky facebook pictures of each other and of trying to push the darn wheelchair.
Remember your road trip is only as fun as you make it!
Until the next one….