Zach and I made it home safely after driving 4,735 miles in 21 days! We had a great time, and now I’m really excited to share some posts about the really amazing things we saw on our journey!
Our first real stop on our trip was in Nutley, New Jersey to visit/meet Zach’s extended family. We had a really great time with them, and his grandfather very graciously allowed us to stay with him. Having never really been to the East Coast I was so excited to the the New York City skyline from the highway to get to Nutley. Nutley is a small town of many just across from NYC. There’s a huge New Jersey-Italian community there (including my favorite one- Zach’s family!) and along with the families there are a ton of little Italian bakeries, restaurants and Italian Ice shops. The houses are beautiful but close together, and the neighbors are even closer!
This is where I stayed- in the house that Zach’s 94-year-old grandpa built
After going to a family get-together Zach and I made our way to Liberty State Park. On our way to the park I got to experience the hectic New Jersey traffic with people running lights, swerving around other cars and tailgating. Zach was sure to comfort me by saying, “I’ve been to this park about 20 times and I’ve never been the same way. I have also gotten lost 18 of those times… So we’ll see!” Haha! Driving in we realized we were there on Memorial Day so the park was packed, and the viewing area of the back of the Statue of Liberty. However, the view of the NYC Skyline was spectacular. It was my first unobstructed view of the buildings and it was unbelievably impressive!
This park is directly across from where the World Trade Centers once stood, and there’s now a September 11th memorial there, and my favorite part of the memorial is that the New World Trade Center building (The Freedom Tower) is perfectly framed by the two walls of the memorial.
We sat in the park for a couple hours to read, and then made our way back to his grandpa’s house. It was a great first day, and the next two were filled with great days in NYC. I’ll tell you more about those soon!