Sunday, September 4, 2016

Amish Country and Allegheny National Forest

Choose a word:

Picturesque.....

Bucolic......

Idyllic....


No matter which word you chose (or if you got greedy and chose more than one) it describes what it's like to drive along the NY Amish Trail.

Today I could have gone due west, hugging the shore of Lake Erie, and making it in about three hours.
 But I saw that the Allegheny National Forest was nearby, so I took a detour, adding a couple of hours to my drive time, so we could explore the forest.

The route took me along a stretch of highway denoted as the NY Amish Trail. It went over rolling hills, through grassy farmland. And the farms were worthy of being on a calendar. They were all so quaint and quintessential. The road was spotted with horse droppings and I even spotted a few buggies on the road.
video
 As it turns out, the Amish Trail was the more interesting part of the side trip. The forest was nice, but there was no place to stop and enjoy it. So we drove through and then got back to the Interstate for the rest of the way to Cleveland.
Driving through Allegheny National Forest
A drawback to taking the farm roads as opposed to the Interstates is that sometimes I go through regions with very little service. Such was the case today as I was getting very hungry and keeping my eyes peeled for a place to eat. The only places I could find along the route today were either roadside stands where I could buy Amish eggs or baked goods, which I passed on, or pubs, where I could be surrounded by daytime drinkers as I waited for my burger. I also passed on that.
I spent a good deal of time on something called the Southern Tier Expressway, but I don't know what that refers to. Most of the drive was very scenic, through grassy hills and forests.

Stupidly, I let myself get to the point where I had a splitting headache from lack of food, and out of desperation, stopped to get a pan pizza from Pizza Hut. It didn't really help. :(   Not to be a complainer, but also my shoulder is still aching. It is reminding me of the way it used to ache when it first happened about eight years ago. I'm trying to remember what I did to heal it, but I'm afraid nothing that I tried worked. I think it just slowly (very slowly, like a matter of years) dissipated.
It never fully went away, unfortunately. My shoulder has never been the same since, and occasionally the injury would threaten to relapse. So far, until now, I've been able to avoid any serious reliving of the deep, relentless pain.
But driving these past few days has been very uncomfortable. I don't think Babe's poor passenger ergonomics are doing me any favors.
 River sometimes gets creative and finds new ways to position himself while sprawled out in the back of the car during long drives.
Eating in the Pizza Hut parking lot.
video
And then we got back on the road to our final destination.  Guess where..... you guessed it, Motel 6!
This time, we stopped in Macedonia, about an hour from Cleveland. And we'll be here for two nights.

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