If you have ever participated in the Blogging A to Z Challenge, then you know that there is always at least one Achille’s Heel in your alphabet — at least one letter that gives you fits when it comes to choosing a topic. Well, welcome to my Achille’s Heel. Today’s post about New Jersey is quite a stretch.
Right out of high school, I got engaged and moved to Philadelphia to be with my fiance. Not really surprisingly, within months of my arrival, he began cheating on me and six months later I was back home in Illinois. But in the six months I spent out east, I had some fun. I got to see Philadelphia and feel the history all around me there. But I also got to have some fun driving across the Ben Franklin, Betsy Ross, and Tacony-Palmyra Bridges between Philadelphia and New Jersey!
The first time I ever encountered a traffic circle (or a roundabout or whatever other regional name you use) was in New Jersey. I found the traffic circles to be really confusing and, frankly, dangerous. I can remember being in the car with my friends Lauren and Ann, driving through a circle, and being in a cold panic. But I got used to it.
My fiance’s parents had a house in Manahawkin, which is not far from Atlantic City. It was a neat place to visit. The house was right on a lagoon that was fed from the Atlantic. We used to go out on the deck and drop crab traps. This was the first time I ever saw a real live crab. I loved the way they walked sideways! They had a balcony off the front of the house as well, and we would often go out there with a telescope during the day and look out on the wildlife sanctuary and watch birds, and at night we would use the telescope to look at Atlantic City. I was mesmerized by the array of glittering lights. I remember going to Atlantic City and waling along the boardwalk. I had never seen a boardwalk before, so I thought it was actually pretty cool. After all, I was literally walking the Monopoly board!
I don’t know if I have any really impressive memories of New Jersey, and I don’t know if I have a hankering to go back there any time, but I did enjoy the trips I took to Jersey all those years ago.