Journey of a Lifetime


Monday, May 24, 2010

Day 36 - Mission: Patterson, NY

We arrived late last night in Carmel, NY at Clarence Fahnstock State Park. We will be switching campsites for the night tonight. Our campsite last night was very steep and it made it difficult to sleep.
We arrived at Patterson about 45 minutes before dinner (or lunch as we know it).
In the lobby, a model of the temple in Jesus' Day as rebuilt and enlarged by Herod the Great (scale 1:200).
Thanks again to Michael and Melissa for coordinating plans with your brother Stephen. Many thanks to Stephen for inviting us for the meal and giving us a tour of the translation services department.
We also got to see Sophia's brother Skylar for a few minutes.
After dinner (lunch) we took a full tour.
Beautiful paintings of scenes of Biblical teaching, appropriate since Patterson is teaching facility.
Photo-op spot by the fountain
Gilead Missionary School
more education
Laundry - super organized and efficient
Dining room
Maintenance & Construction
Art Department
Writing Correspondence
Service Department
& Translation.
There is also an audio visual department, that handles all of the recordings of the publications and videos, including sign language videos. (It is a very busy department that is in use much of the time, making it difficult to give tours in that area.)
What an encouraging and educational day!
Tomorrow will be fun filled again, with our tour of Watchtower Farms at Wallkill.

Day 35 - Mission: Carmel, NY via Providence, RI & Boston, MA

We said good-bye to our beautiful & peaceful campground in Sandwich, MA this morning.
We will be making our way to upstate New York for our tours of Patterson & Wallkill. But before officially leaving Massachusetts - we are making the short jaunt back to Boston for a special pizza pie and of course, Mike's Pastry.
Our drive back to Boston took us through Providence, Rhode Island
and being such a small state, we were quickly back in Massachusetts.
Before heading into Boston, we took a short side trip out to see the Boston Light. It is the oldest lighthouse site in the United States, but not the oldest lighthouse. It was rebuilt in 1783. Unfortunately, when we arrived at the coastline, we didn't see the lighthouse. We saw this:
Yep, fog! Socked in fog. The only indication of a lighthouse out on the island, was the repetitive blasts of the fog horn. Fitting.
Oh well, nothing that a cannoli can't fix.
But first a stop at Ernesto's in the North End.
Thanks Charlene, for convincing us to go visit your cousin, Andrea! It was the best pizza hands down, thus far on the trip!
We devoured it, but left room for a few goodies from Mike's.
The photo makes the box look 10 pounds bigger - really.
COLBY! We haven't even left Boston yet! Oh its useless. Who can resist a Whoopie Pie?

Finally in Connecticut, en route to Carmel, NY. Beautiful sunset along the way.
Tomorrow, we tour Patterson - Watchtower Educational Center.

Day 34 - Mission: Cape Cod, MA

More sights of Cape Cod was on our agenda for today.
We started off in Sandwich, where we are staying. It is the oldest town on Cape Cod and it is a beautiful one. The houses are so unique and so many of them have star fish poised in their windows - really cute. Our first stop was Sandwich Glass Museum.
We learned all about colored glass, glass blowing, and even saw a demonstration.
The finished product
Did you know that to make red glass they used to put gold in it? Or bright canary yellow glass was made with radioactive uranium?

Afterward, we were on our way out to see the Chatham light, built in 1877.
Because they are built on cliffs, the lighthouses in Massachusetts are usually smaller than ones in other parts of the country. This one is just under 50 feet. We even got to climb up into the light tower of this one.
There used to be two lighthouses at this site, but one fell from the eroding cliff in December 1879.
We stopped in Orleans for fish & chips at this place. It was so good!
Then, much to Colby's dismay, we were off to another lighthouse. (Obsess much, Jen?)
This one called the Nauset light, built in 1877 had to be moved back from the 70 foot cliff in 1996.
These three tiny lighthouses are called the Three Sisters and are not far from the Nauset light.
These 3 wooden towers replaced the original brick structures in 1892. They stood 150 feet apart. They were decommissioned and eventually moved here and away from the eroding beach. The multiple lights at different harbors made it easy for sailors to distinguish which harbor it was.

I gave Colby a rest from the lighthouses and we headed into Hyannis for some snacks and shopping.
Later we made our way back to Sandwich and had dinner here. Colby had delicious prime rib for $10!!! Can't beat that!
Colby took this picture of us snug as bugs in the back of the van. I am frankly surprised that he was smiling still after enduring my obsession.
Tomorrow, we head back to New York. But apparently we will be making a detour back to the North End - something about pizza and pastry?

Day 33 - Mission: Cape Cod, MA

This morning we slept in - an actual bed, an amazing one, at the Marriott. After sleeping on an air mattress wouldn't you?
We finally crawled out and got on the road for Plymouth, MA and Cape Cod. Before leaving Boston, we drove through Cambridge to see some of the Harvard campus.
We arrived in Plymouth in the early afternoon, and stopped first at Plymouth Rock housed in this superstructure.
The actual rock is much smaller than what you would imagine. Apparently it is 2/3 smaller than it originally was. The date 1620 is etched into it - the year the Pilgrim's landed.
Relaxing at the Mayflower II exhibit.
We walked around the quaint town of Plymouth for a while before heading the small distance left to Cape Cod.
Beautiful bridges cross the canal into to Cape Cod.
Finally we arrived at our campground in Sandwich, Massachusetts.
It was a beautiful town and a beautiful state park. After we settled in and found our site, we went out on the Cape to see some lighthouses. This one in West Dennis was built in 1855. It was later converted into an Inn and restaurant.
We ate dinner at Captain Parker's Pub in West Yarmouth. Their New England Clam Chowder was delicious.
Tomorrow - more sights of Cape Cod, and probably a few more lighthouses.

Day 32 - Mission: A Day with Jay in Boston

This morning, we were starting out for the walk of the Freedom Trail, numb feet and all.
Boston is truly a historic place! There is so much to see and do here. I will keep this post as short and simple as possible.
The Freedom Trail is a 2.5 mile long trail past several historic, early American Revolutionary sites.
The Old South Meeting House - the place where Bostonians on December 16, 1773 decided what would be done with the historic "tea".
The Old State House - The seat of British Government before the Revolution & outside its doors, the site of the Boston Massacre.
Colby & Jay standing outside Faneuil Hall with Samuel Adams. It was a stage for many of the protests and debates against British Rule. Samuel Adams led much of the activity that went on here.
Random sign posted on the outside of Faneuil Hall - obviously historic, but not as old as Revolutionary.
Quincy Market - just behind Faneuil Hall - Boston's first public market, filled with lots of good stuff to eat.
The center dome - plenty of area to sit down and eat.
Oh yea, I couldn't get enough of the New England Clam Chowder.
Jay with Arnold "Red" Auerbach, former coach and general manager of Boston Celtics. Sorry, Laker fans. (Go Celtics!)
This town is full of really cool old pubs - we are here with a Redcoat guarding the entrance to one.
The Custom House clock tower - Construction completed in 1915. Formerly where the government inspected & registered goods coming into the harbor. Now a hotel.
The yummy North End. Sigh.
Paul Revere's House
the Duo with the Paul Revere statue.
The North Church - where the famous signal lanterns were displayed by Paul Revere April 18, 1775.
Itty Bitty house.
Don't worry Laker fans - he's pointing to the Boston Bruins sign. It just also happens to be the home of the Celtics too.
Another one of these bridges.
Walking down the Freedom Trail to visit Bunker Hill - The site first major Revolutionary War Battle. Also where the famous "Don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes" quote came from.
Colby climbed the 294 steps inside the monument to the top. What a great view of the Boston Harbor.
Then a short walk down to the USS Constitution - also know as Old Ironsides. Unfortunately, it was being renovated so we could only see part of it.
Jay took pity on my exhausted feet and we took a cab back to Quincy market.
Another famous spot in Boston at Quincy Market. (Not the real building here, but the feel of it.)
After a quick bite to eat at Quincy Market, we took the subway to the Sam Adams brewery tour.
Colby is smiling in this picture because we are about to get free beer.
After Sam Adams, we were in for a really special treat - a Red Sox game at Fenway Park and the opportunity to see batting practice from the top of the Green Monster.
The boys having fun.
Oooh! Touching the Monsta!
Willy the Green Monster - the Red Sox mascot.
Beautiful downtown Boston
Kevin Youkilis and his funky stance. Definitely a big one with the fans.
The view from our hotel room.
THANK YOU SO MUCH JAY! Our time in Boston with you was so much fun!
Tomorrow we will be on our way to Plymouth and Cape Cod.