Large paddle ball
Day 4, Monday – Ashland, OH to Buffalo, NY (295 miles)
Today started better in most all aspects: good hotel, got to see friendly Morgan (the desk clerk) again this morning with her great smile, had an early breakfast, and were off to an early start. Little did we know the icing on the cake would be the ideal weather forecasted for the day.
The first stop for the day was in Cleveland. While Pam pulled up the song “Cleveland Rocks” Claire navigated Susan through bumpy roads to locate a number of unusual and unique things. A giant paddle ball (symbolizing the city’s ability to bounce back), a giant rubber stamp with “FREE” on it (symbolizing the freedom of slaves), the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the beautiful view of the Lake Erie, and the Cleveland sign were all our favorites. Of course, there were a few duds such as a huge pencil (that turned out to be about our height and not impressive at all) and a giant tin man from the Wizard of Oz (smaller than us and on top of a building). None the less, we liked Cleveland.
Next stop was Geneva, OH to
We are in the rocking roll hall of fame letters
visit the world’s smallest covered bridge (18’ long). We held our own Geneva Convention as we voted and made some important decisions and watched the glove box on the van mysteriously pop open by itself. In nearby Austinburg, OH, Pam tried to climb a large rocking chair. Then, farther up the road in Ashtabula, we visited and walked the longest covered bridge in the US (Smolen-Gulf Covered Bridge at 613 ft long) and the Riverview Pedestrian Covered Bridge literally right under it. We enjoyed our picnic lunch near the covered bridges. All the while, the weather so near Lake Erie was just perfect – blue skies, a gentle breeze, temps in the low 80s, low humidity – it was a wonderful, summertime lake effect.
We ditched the interstate and decided to drive up along Lake Erie. At Conneaut, OH, we snapped a lighthouse picture and stopped at the beach for Pam to do her necessary “get her feet into the water” spiel. Pam has “now officially” been into a Great Lake.
Back on the road, we soon were in Pennsylvania. In 5 to 10 miles, we passed a sign for the “Old State Line” (it changed back in
Does the music have to be that loud???
1792). Much farther up the lake road, we stopped in Erie, PA to see a statue of Liberfrog (a frog spoof of Lady Liberty).
Soon after Erie, PA, we were in New York state all the while still traveling along Lake Erie. The rolling roads near the lake were lined with miles and miles of vineyards. A sign said we were in Barcelona . . . What??? Did we just go to Spain??? Then, suddenly up ahead there appeared what looked like an ancient castle. No, it was a lighthouse and an old one at that. The Barcelona Lighthouse was erected in 1829 by the Federal Government and looks every bit that old, but we really liked it. Claire also found herself a big bottle of wine to sample in the grassy area near the lighthouse and she just couldn’t help herself. We tried to make some phone calls, but the signals dropped on Susan’s phone, then Pam’s phone. Not long afterwards, Claire’s phone said, “Welcome to Canada” - What??? When did we cross the border??? At our last stop before Buffalo, we snapped a picture of Dolly Dimples the Waitress Statue.
Buffalo was soon in sight in
selfie with Cleveland in the background
the distance with a line of windmills along its lakeside. Before supper at 50s diner (called The Lake Effect) with great food, we stopped to make a picture of the Big Buffalo Nickel (for the animal, not the city). Although we’ll be staying at our hotel 2 nights, our room doesn’t include breakfast and we had to pay $5 a day for a teeny, tiny little cube of a refrigerator to keep just part of our cold things in. The rest of it had to stay in our coolers packed with ice. Oops a glitch in booking. Maybe it was the lake effect.
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