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And We're Off!

The beginning of our U.S. tour :)

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"Snooty" is loaded up and ready to rock! The odometer at the beginning of the trip reads 169580 miles. Let's go!

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My husband and faithful travel companion, Ryan, drove the first leg to Ogdensburg, New York. It took approximately 7.5 hours and we elected to travel the more scenic, northern route parallel to the Canadian border. Ryan had his doubts about my navigation taking us through the remote regions of New Hampshire, but we were both pleasantly surprised by the beautiful scenery it bestowed upon us. We drove past "The Balsams" and Lake Gloriette was still frozen. Vermont also offered gorgeous landscape and Lake Champlain delightfully greeted us into New York.

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Wind turbines were scattered thickly throughout northern New York. We were also very impressed by the magnitude of the Saint Lawrence river, which begins in Lake Ontario and flows 1,900 miles into the Gulf of Saint Lawrence/Atlantic Ocean (the largest estuary in the world!)

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We arrived in Ogdensburg around 7:15 pm on Friday, April 21. Here is where one of my best friends in the entire world resides, Dr. Natalie Jackson! For those of you who don't know, Natalie and I became friends during my second year of pharmacy school at Albany College of Pharmacy. I invited her to drink margaritas and sing karaoke with me at the local Mexican bar Bombers and the rest is history :) We were roommates thereafter and she stood beside me as a bridesmaid at Ryan and my wedding last September. This wasn't my first time visiting the Ogdensburg area but I had yet to see her new house (despite living there for 3+ years), Ryan had never been, and we were both looking forward to spending more time getting to know her long-term boyfriend, Michael. It was A BLAST! We were given the royal treatment as soon as we arrived. Michael, a chef by trade, prepared a fabulous dinner consisting of lamb, scallops, and pesto risotto. We played Cards Against Humanity and indulged in some adult beverages. Our trip was off to a wonderful start.

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That Saturday, April 22, Natalie's mom joined us for brunch which was again prepared by our chef extraordinaire, Mike. Ryan said it was "the best breakfast he's ever tasted" and I agree! I had never before experienced "kugel" but soon learned I was missing out. He added smoked salmon, a poached egg, and homemade hollandaise sauce. It was heaven on a plate. From there, we ventured off to explore the local sites. The tour-de-Ogdensburg started with a wine tasting at a local vineyard. When I say "tasting", what I really mean is that they poured each glass half-full of wine and then didn't even charge us at the end since we bought some of their merchandise. Score! Next stop was Thousand Islands. We stopped by the Dark Island Spirits Distillery and enjoyed the fabulous local spirits. Afterwards we ate delicious Wood Boat Brewery pizza and then headed back to Natalie's house for more fun and games. Michael's witty brother Bill came over and we all laughed until we cried several times. One of those occasions was when Bill announced that he had yet to visit Maine, to which Ryan and I both exclaimed in unison (and with the same disbelieving inflection), "you haven't been to Maine before?!?!?!" :)

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Sunday morning came too early and it was time to say our goodbyes and hit the road to our next stop: Royal Oak, Michigan.

Posted by Parsons123 16:45

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