Jeff and Cheryl New England Trip travel blog

Today's plan is to go to Newport RI. Cheryl is anxious to see some incredible mansions there. Tours daily. Start out with breakfast. IHOP it is. I looked at the maps and chose one that looked like it was on the way, and only 8 miles away from our hotel. I put it into the Google Maps and we were off. First problem. That 8 miles is going to take us 45 minutes. Once again I had it set for no highways. Got to correct Miss Neverlost again. Now it's 18 minutes. Better.

We started driving and Cheryl noticed the houses were getting really nice. I mean REALLY nice. Also the traffic is getting heavier. She asked me where this location was. I looked and said Cambridge. She looked at me and said, That's Harvard University. That town is going to be a mess!. I told her going to be is incorrect. It IS a mess.

We drove around and saw the IHOP as we drove past it. Nice looking location. No parking ANYWHERE! Driving around this town makes Manhattan look easy. The town was founded in the 1600s and it is not a nice grid. Streets go everywhere!

We found a place for me to turn around...on the other side of the Charles River. As we drove back to IHOP I asked Cheryl if we are smart enough to drive around here. She didn't respond. Next to the IHOP was a parking deck. We decided to park there. This turned out to be the smallest parking deck I have ever tried to get my Pacifica through. Even worse when we met a car coming the other way. We found a space on the 4th floor. I backed in (love those cameras), pulled in the outside mirrors and parked. Cheryl was able to get out of her side...and so was I. Couldn't open the drivers door. Too close to a pole.

We got outside of the deck, and discovered we were on the other side of the deck. Just had to walk around the block. These winding no rhyme or reason streets. Finally I took out google maps to find it. It said we were 100' from IHOP. Cheryl said "If we can't find IHOP which is 100' away, then No we are not smart enough to drive around here. We finally found it, right next to the Dunkin Donuts with the outside tables with the large DD umbrellas. We were seated at IHOP next to a table of seven what appeared to be college students. They were finished with their meal, and I said to Cheryl "Let's see if they can figure out how to divide the check!" They finally did.

One of the nice things about not having all our plans reserved is the ability to change plans on the fly. After breakfast, we decided to walk around the town and campus. The streets and campus pathways were crowded with high school students in groups touring the campus. Some groups had interpreters. The campus was amazing. Wonderful buildings, lovely landscaping, a charming downtown. We came across a children's toy and book store dedicated to Curious George. Seems the author of the Curious George books lived and taught in Cambridge. We walked around (and visited two libraries) for about two hours. Then came time to get our car out of the deck. No problem. Except that now not only were all of the spaces in the deck full, they were parking cars in the driving lanes. We got to my car, and waited for the attendant to move the car that was blocking me in, and drove out. Cheryl merely covered her eyes until we were out of the deck. Driving the streets was scary enough.

It was now about 1:00 PM. We decided to postpone Newport to tomorrow, and take the scenic route to our hotel, in Connecticut. Driving time 3 hours. We drove through some wonderful countryside, some not so wonderful countryside and some interesting sights. We passed a large field full of sunflowers, with a maze cut through it. I love sunflowers! We must go back to that. We finally arrived at our hotel at about 4:30, checked in and asked for a dinner suggestion. We had dinner in New London, across the river. It was a seafood restaurant along the docks. The hotel desk clerk had given us directions and said you turn into a dead end street, but it really isn't a dead end street. He was right. We parked the car and got in line. It seems you walked up to a window, gave your order, picked up at another window, and went to any of the picnic type tables outside. We sat, and had a wonderful dinner while watching the boats in the harbor. Cheryl had her first lobster roll. Real good. After dinner we drove around a little, returned to our hotel and called it a night.

Tomorrow Newport?

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