today we went for a drive to see some of that crazy fall foliage we keep hearing about. we headed up route 16 north through dover, nh, where we immediately hit traffic as (big surprise) the lanes were merged from two into one due to traffic – a common occurrence in new england.
jen then had the idea to get off the highway and get coffee in a small town called rochester, so we could wait for the traffic to end. rochester is a tiny town with a dunkin donuts, two irish bars, and, today only, an oktoberfest celebration. the celebration consisted of a mini-punkin patch for kids to select and paint faces on, plus a table outside one of the irish bars with steamed hot dogs in a big glass jar, and a vat of coffee and some cookies i think. also there was a live band and some women wearing traditional "german-style" dresses walking around.
the atmosphere was quite festive, as you can imagine.
further, there was a small "traveling barnyard", which happened to have the same animals that we saw a week ago when we went to the harvest festival at the apple crest apple farm in hampton falls, nh. so, jen got to again say hello to the three alpaca, two baby cows, 1 jackass, two chickens and several tiny goats and sheep that she spent over 30 minutes petting a week ago.
then we stumbled across an art gallery called artstream. it's a very cute little gallery with some nice art selections ranging from paintings to paper art to ceramics to one-of-a-kind jewelry. the creaky wooden floors and back room filled with bustling gray-haired women making crafts "live" added greatly to the kitsch and charm of the gallery. inside, we spoke with an employee who, upon learning that jen's name is what it is, gave her a book called jen 11, which showcases arts and crafts from 11 different artists who are all named jen.
this greatly inspired jen to create even more art pieces so she can hopefully be selected for the next issue of jen 11.
after this, we hit the road again to see some leaves. it was a gorgeous, crisp, sunny day with a chilly wind, just enough to keep you feeling refreshed and your cheeks a little rosy all day. we came across a pond with some railroad tracks alongside of it, and being the lover of railroad tracks i am, we decided to park at a nearby gas station and walk the tracks.
we had a nice walk through the woods, eating apples and kind bars and sea salt & vinegar chips, then decided to head back to portsmouth. i'm writing this post now just to get (back) in the habit of documenting our experiences in new england, so we can look back on them later and have a good laugh or stir up some fond memories.
i'll add a few pictures from this experience in the next post, and i'm working on another post that describes the harvest fest we went to last week as well. we also have some halloween parties coming up (wait until my costume is revealed), along with the book fest and veg fest in boston over the next two weekends. all in all, fall can be a very busy time in new england.
until then, keep exploring!