travel journal :: east coast bound & the big apple

Thursday morning. 5 am. Eastbound. Destination: Newport, RI for the Newport Folk Fest by way of New York City.

I feel like I’ve been looking forward to this trip since I bought my tickets at the beginning of March. It always felt so far away, the end of summer. But, almost bittersweetly, the summer has almost ended and the wonderful folk music is here.

Thursday, my bestie Sara and I drove straight through to New York without a hitch. Ohio is kind of a weird state and Pennsylvania had the most unusual road signs but mostly we just hummed along eastbound interstates. We arrived in NYC around 7 pm.

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I’ve been a few times before, but each time I see different things, that’s the great thing about such a huge city. A friend of ours moved there at the beginning of the year and we stayed in his pretty huge for NYC apartment in Mornigside Heights near Columbia University.

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We ate a lovely restaurant called Bier International in Harlem. It kind of reminded me of an international meeting place in Europe. It was kind of loud and just had that vibe. We then met Jason at Columbia and caught up on all things life. It was really encouraging to see friends following their dreams. It makes me wonder what my dream is going to be and how I will accomplish it.

In the morning we rode downtown to get coffee at a favorite Portland based shop called Stumptown. It’s just a small little cafe in the Ace Hotel. But it was wonderful all the same. Then, we walked to the old industrial district to see the Highline Park. If you don’t know what this is, you need to look it up. It’s a park made entirely on an old elevated train platform. It’s magical. One of my new favorite parks.

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After a stroll along he Highline, we realized that we were close to a training center that one of the roasters that we buy coffee from, Counter Culture. It was just a small suite in a building. We just walked right on up and into the small office and explained to them that we wanted to look around because they roast for us. But, to our surprise, they were doing a coffee cupping and invited us to stay. It is always great to be around other coffee geeks, I feel slightly normal…

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Then, it was lunch at Bareburger. A completely organic restaurant. We were absolutely in love and the food was, of course, amazing.

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If any of you read my posts about France, you will see how much I’m now in love with Laduree and macarons. To my wonderful surprise, New York has a store! It was one of the top of the list to do there… Call me crazy. Anyways, we got our little treats and went to Central Park to wander for a bit.

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Then, it was the train back uptown to get back to our car. We had already stayed in the city longer than planned. So, of course, we hit the worst traffic in the world. We were going to try to stop at Yale just to see it but those plans were soon forgotten when we sat in traffic for like 3 hours.

But, we finally made it to Rhode Island. It was already dark and we needed a place to sleep. We check in with a campground in Point Judith and they were full. But the ranger gave us a tip about the beaches that don’t get patrolled at night. So, we (kinda) illegally camped on the beach. The only terrible thing about it was that there was a party going on right next to our tent. Basically just really annoying and loud people which made it almost impossible to get to sleep for a few hours. But, it was free and we had a view of a beautiful lighthouse. So, I’ll put this one in the win column.

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Live what you love.

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