Boston- New Jersey (and New York)

“People say New Yorkers can’t get along. Not true. I saw two New Yorkers, complete strangers, sharing a cab. One guy took the tires and the radio; the other guy took the engine”
-David Letterman 
I don’t exactly know why I copy pasted this joke to the very beginning. The fact is though, that I did arrive to New York City through “Da Hood” -pointing out like dr.Livingstone did in Africa. However, thanks to ovi maps and my new Nokia I arrived to Manhattan safe and sound at 6p.m on 24th of June, finishing my Etappe 8 just on the midsummer eve. Hip hip… (hoorray!), hip hip… (hoorray!).
But before I’ll praise how great NYC is, let me tell you about four episodes which took place on the trip from Boston to New York.
Stoughton (Massachusets) : My first stop after Boston was nowhere else than at Ikea. Famous Swedish meatballs, some Nordic sweets (salmiakki) and singoalla cookies was the best start one could get. Only Sauna was missing.
Providence (Rhode Island): One free day in Providence was enough to try on some monster outfits (that’s me in the pic ->), visit the grave of H.P.Lovecraft (and notice a Finnish business card left on his tomb) and being interviewed for a local radio channel.
Noank (Connecticut): Visiting this small village (pop. 1830) by the Atlantic brought an unexpected gift. I was stopped by a new car, and this man who got up from the vehicle started to give compliments about my cycling equipment. Well, this man turned out to be the president of Ortlieb USA, and not only that he gave me his business card and invited me to Seattle (head office), but he also swapped my old and worn out map case into a new one!!! Go ortlieb!

New Haven (Connecticut): This city 135km from NYC has the famous Yale university, but also guess what? Yes,an Ikea store! So after always satisfactory Ikea lunch (and this time also Daim- chocolate) I wanted to visit the once-a-week-free-admission Peabody Museum. In here, Bingham brought all the precious artifacts he discovered in Machu Picchu, yet this year they agreed to slowly return the artifacts to Peru.
But whilst enjoying my Swedish meatballs, a very hard rain turned the whole New Haven into a Venice. The free admission time was running out, so I had to make a stylish move. I strip into my boxers, put all my clothes and shoes into 100% waterproof ortlieb pannier, and hop on a bicycle. It’s a shame that taking a picture of this action wasn’t possible, because riding bicycle in heavy rain and hopping over the half meter puddles only with my underwear was surely amusing.
I made it to the Museum on time, unluckily the artifacts were already packed and ready for the shipment back to their origin.
And so, after these four episodes it was only one day ride to New York City. Following the route 1 from New Haven to NYC was the shortest option, though it was not pleasant at all. I would say I had to cross thousand traffic lights, stopping on them maybe hundred times. Then 10 miles before Manhattan I found myself in this MusicTV-style surrounding. I didn’t take any risks by capturing pictures of local people, maybe because I was so petrified from the movies which shows angry black people doing bad things to naive white people. However, if I had to choose to cycle the second time in Peru or Bronx, I would choose definitely the Bronx.
New York City. Big Apple. The city which never sleeps. Here I am for the second time in my life, this time though couchsurfing and with a bicycle. Which in a way makes it even better. Riding  a bike over the Brooklyn bridge, Central Park or along the coast of Manhattan, not mentioning the Times Square is simply great. Being invited to a roof top party by your couchsurfing host is not bad either. And then there are of course (sometimes free) museums, concerts, shows, parades, exhibitions and other events which just are as big and stunning as NYC itself.
It’s impossible to “do” New York in a week, in a month or even a lifetime, because there is always something new going on….and on.. and on…and on.
After two nights in NYC I decided to check out New Jersey, and visited one of my blog followers. This friendly man is now hosting me in Englewood (just opposite of a house John Travolta grew up), a nice small town surrounded by quietness, which is remarkably only 9 miles from the Times Square. Here I can rest for few days before heading back to NYC, and finally meeting my Finnish buddies. One month siesta is I think rightfully deserved.


  1. Posted June 28, 2011 at 4:39 am | Permalink | Reply

    yes, lukas, it is! congrats once more!
    regards from hot tehran
    off for shiraz

  2. Dave Edwards
    Posted June 28, 2011 at 9:09 am | Permalink | Reply

    Congratulations mate! Enjoy your well deserved month off 🙂

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