cruisinUSA

07: Week Five

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Yesterday we woke up in the rain.

Tent's rainfly was soaked. Laundry we hung up to dry was pretty moist. Shoes were damp.

But spirits were high.

Nothing like some nature time for rejuvenation.


Portland, Maine

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Portland was also a pretty rad town, of the coastal party scene variety. 

We only managed a short weekend there, and then a quick stop to drop off some beer to our generous hosts. James and Brian welcomed us right into their lives for two days, with some night life, some swimming on the river, and a sweet barbecue at sunset. 


Acadia National Park

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So our weekly updates are a little less than weekly. But we're trying. 

This past week (or weekish segment of time), we found ourselves mostly deep in Maine's Acadia National Park, found on a big island way up north in Maine called Mount Desert. 

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After our rainy last morning, we found our way to a coffee shop for breakfast and to plot our next moves. 

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Taste of blueberry-basil lemonade c/o of our friendly barista Heather at The Independent, a cafe in Bar Harbor. 

Camping Acadia

I'm learning cribbage from Luc, keep the ol' brain sharp.

I'm learning cribbage from Luc, keep the ol' brain sharp.

After Portland, Maine, we camped for four nights in and around Acadia National Park on Mount Desert Island... Way way up there in the northeast. Kinda San Juan Islands-y. 

Sidenote: Dad, we broke the lantern. Back in week two. But we'll fix it or replace it!

(But in the meantime, a flashlight + an opaque water bottle can work wonders...)

We got a couple great hikes in up there.

Overall, Maine is a pretty sweet spot. 

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We woke up at 330 one morning, drove to what we thought was Cadillac Mountain, location of one of the earliest sunrises in North America... Also, drivable and quite touristy. 

We ended up at a different mountain somehow, walking up a wagon road in the dark, reasonably convinced we were lost and sure to miss the sunrise... until we came across a trailhead around 5am. 

At the top of that, we found an empty peak and a world about to wake up. 

Turned out we were on Mount Sergeant instead, where we caught the whole thing. 

Sitting in Boston again, our pitstop on the way to Washington DC, where we'll spend a couple days exploring and catching up with our pal Angie. 

We went to DC in 8th grade for a school trip, perhaps the beginnings of our traveling duo... Now the return.

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06: Week Four

Let's see... where did we leave off?

Caught our fellow westsider Mitchell's band, Stuart's Giant, playing at the Skinny Pancake.

We're talking some Berklee-educated, far out musicians. These guys jammed out for a couple of hours, and gave us a preview of what was to come in Boston. Keyboard player couldn't play, but these three characters laid down the groove and made for a super fun show.

Mitch, Kevin, Goodman   

Mitch, Kevin, Goodman

 

Burlington

Todd took us out on a school night and we saw some Burlington night life -- great time. Three Needs and Ake's Place where awesome. 

Burlington is apparently the birthplace of Phish, and the town that Bernie Sanders was mayor of, or something. (I'm not gonna check these facts right now because I'm just tired.) 

We made some friends and really enjoyed our time in The 'Burl. It's basically a beautiful beach town on Lake Champlain with the Adirondack mountains off in the distance. Lotsa good beer, sunshine and cool beaches, as exhibited on the Instagram. 

It was similar to Bellingham in a lot of ways. Burlingham -- College town, similar size, similar vibe. Super fun.

Then we hit the road up to Boston to stay at Mitch's place. 


Boston

Boston is old. 

Ali (Luc's sister) flew out to meet us for the week.

The British are coming.


Stuart's Giant

Mitch and the gang are full time musicians, gigging and teaching and running their own band. 

They knocked out a rad recording and we filmed the session and made a video for them. Coming soon.

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"We got the tools and the means."


Road Notes

Something we keep seeing: hiring signs. Everywhere we go places are hiring.

Move somewhere, get a job, make some friends, see another place. 


NEXT: Portland, Maine

Actually I finish this up there. Each week gains a day, considering my plan was to do these updates on Wednesdays. Staying consistent-ish though!

05: Week Three

Chicago

The "bean" (or donut)

The "bean" (or donut)

After just about settling into Chicago for good... We decided it was time to leave after all, so we finally hit the road. 

Time lapse-ing behind the scenes

Time lapse-ing behind the scenes

The Chi was real nice -- great city.

It's bigger than Seattle by a lot, but without the hills, and with the L (elevated train), it feels very connected. 

It was super bike-able, lots to do, toasty weather, humongous lake, and beautiful young people all over the place doesn't hurt.

Gemma showed us around her midwest, and we got a lot of camera practice in. These are all shots from both Luc and I's cameras. 


Toronto

We somehow finagled our way across the border and back. (Thanks to Jessica who mailed my passport to Chicago!)

Drove through a crazy storm on the way to Toronto, then we shared a pizza and tested an urban traveler's legend...

Turns out you  can  sleep in a van in a Walmart parking lot. (Or nobody noticed us?)

Turns out you can sleep in a van in a Walmart parking lot. (Or nobody noticed us?)

We just had to know.

Our girlfriends. 

Our girlfriends. 

With our curiosity satisfied, we woke up, made PB&J's and drove to see a natural wonder. 


Niagara Falls

We've played around with the tourist-y thing on this trip, seen some natural wonders and such. 

Niagara was the most recent.

She's a beaut.

Maid of the Mist

Maid of the Mist

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The power...

The power...

It was worth the crowds. 

After a brief stop in Utica, NY ("the city that god forgot")... We drove into the Adirondacks to camp. 


Upstate NY / Adirondacks

We posted up in an empty campground on Schroon Lake up in the Adirondacks under a blanket of stars. 

Later on, we looked up from our s'mores and watched a meteor shower.

It's all about those moments.


Breakdown

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Then we woke up, started the drive to Burlington, Vermont, only to have the van breakdown near Ticonderoga, NY.

Hilariously we were playing around with the iPhone timelapse feature when we broke down, so you literally watch it happen on our Instagram or right here:

Luc correctly guessed our issue was the fuel pump and we called triple A.

AAA is definitely a worthy investment -- coming through in the clutch. 

Then Jim our friendly tow truck driver strapped our baby up on the truck and drove us to Burlington, Vermont to a GMC dealership where we got the fuel pump fixed for way too much money. 

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So it goes. 

Luckily that was our next destination.

So we're in Burlington, crashing at our buddy Todd's; making friends, swimming and riding bikes.

(He read the blog earlier on and shot me a text inviting us out here and we're so grateful!)

It's a killer town.

Tonight we're seeing our Boston buddy Mitchell's band play in Burlington at the Skinny Pancake, and tomorrow we head down to Boston!

Come along for the ride! Follow via @thegoodscene on Instagram!