Monday, August 29, 2022

Road Trips of Living

 When was the last time you just wandered? 

Let the road take you and your spirit guide you?

My husband and I did that this past Sunday.

We live in the Northeast and as still newbies up here, have places yet to discover.  

So we got up early on Sunday morning, got ready, even skipping. my usual coffee-making-routine, and hit the highway while it was still dawning.

The birds were chirping, the trees were swaying their hello, and best of all, it was mostly still.

After making it down to the New York boarder and pretty much through what would normally be the snared traffic over the George Washington Bridge, we turned right to Long Island instead of left to Manhattan, and let the adventure begin.

So unlike my husband, we didn't really have a destination, just said, where do you want to eat breakfast? We put in a spot in Glen Cove, and when we got there, my husband went inside and said, "nah." So we did my thing and put in a coffee shop and found the most delightful one called South Down Coffee. 

Since I was in virtual church and had some ministry duties, he went inside to take care of the order. When church was over, I popped in to see this beautifully arranged former garage, complete with concrete as the tables. They roasted the coffee on site! It would definitely be my go-to-place.

Now, coffee is my thing, not his, so we hit the highway again in search of breakfast/brunch (me) and lunch (him) and found ourselves in Huntington at The Shed. Let me tell you! This former vegetarian was giddy with the thick sliced bacon, farm greens, and spinach mushroom frittata. Since I already had coffee, I tried a non-alcoholic version of their Revenge of the Pink Panther. Let me just say, grapefruit is on my list now.

We enjoyed dining al fresco and then walked around the quaint village, stumbling upon a pop-up bookshop -we are literary nerds!

He knows I wanted the water, that is always my scene, so by that afternoon, we set out on a quest around the sound, literally just letting the road lead us. We ended up back down in Port Jefferson and thought we would be able to just load the car and take the ferry back. It was about 5 o'clock by then and as much as we enjoyed our Sunday adventure, we were not about to stay until 8 o'clock for a maybe spot on the sold out boat. It was the Greek Festival!

What did these two empty nesting adventurers do? We turned the car around back up toward Stony Brook and all points leading to New York City, stopping at a Farmer's Market along the way, and honestly, just enjoying the villages, the quiet, and life.

I always share with people the joy in travel, even if it is a day trip. Where we went was at the most two hours from our home, accounting for some traffic on the way back. We ventured off the interstates, preferring the state highways that take us through towns and villages.

As he was driving and the radio was serenading us with 60s and 70s R&B, we both talked about how pleasant it was to just be, to live, to see this time in our lives. We laughed a bit that our kids are now "all over the country" and at the adventures we hoped they were having.

Throughout the journey of raising them and becoming ourselves, we have always included getting out and seeing the world, of taking on new challenges, and of adventure.  It invites discovery and helps your worldview to be more expansive.

Perhaps that is what is missing, seeing each other, seeing people as valuable gifts waiting to be met along the way with a hello and a smile. 

I hope curiosity will always be a part of my next phase of life. There is still and yet more to experience. Get out and enjoy this thing!


Writing as Tayé Foster Bradshaw, she is always ready to discover new places, drink great coffee, and pop up at a book, art, or craft fair! She and her husband are new empty nesters living in Connecticut.

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