New England Road Trip
The warm New England sun was out in force when we hired a car and decided to take a trip down to Cape Cod, with a few stop offs along the way. Here is an insight into our journey and what we saw.
First, we had to pick up the car from Boston Logan airport. I had preordered the car back in England and was very much looking forward to seeing it in person. I was not disappointed. We had the choice of two colours and we just had to go for the burnt orange.
This is a 5.7 Litre Dodge Challenger and it was awesome to drive!
Our route was a bit convoluted but we only had the car for a day and needed to make the most out of it. We travelled over 200 miles around New England, taking in the sites of Cape Cod and the Atlantic Ocean.
Our route took us firstly North East to Danvers, around the outskirts of Boston heading South West to Foxborough and then from here to a couple of Cape Cod towns in the South.
First impressions of the car and stop one
I instantly fell in love with this car. It was easy to drive and it would seriously move when you put your foot down. I had no experience of driving on the other side of the road and little experience driving an automatic car. Luckily for me, my friend James who accompanied me on this holiday, a few months previous had driven from LA to New York. So, for our first drive out of the airport and up to Danvers, I was the navigator while James drove.
Apart from getting lost a couple of times and some poor navigation down a gravel pathway, we made it to our first stop; Danvers. Formally known as Salem village, this town has a lot of history and we were here for something in particular. We had travelled up there to see the former mental institution which gave author HP Lovecraft the idea of Arkham Asylum from the popular Batman comics/games/movies etc. After spending some time there, we headed to our next stop. I will cover Danvers more in a future blog as we discovered some interesting things there.
Checking out the Stadium
We headed to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough to visit the New England Patriots Proshop, as we knew on game day it would be impossible to visit. This also gave us a chance to get some stadium photography done when there were few people around. I drove this leg and it took me a few minutes to get my bearings, but once I was on the interstate it was smooth sailing. The sun was out in force by this point of the day.
Driving down to Falmouth
We wanted to eat at Cape Cod and found ourselves in Falmouth. Falmouth appeared to be a quintessential New England town, with its quaint buildings and friendly locals. Falmouth was named after Falmouth in Cornwall, the home port of Bartholomew Gosnold, an English explorer.
After clam chowder and sandwiches, we headed to Walmart to stock up on items we could not find back home. My suitcase on the flight over to Boston weighted just 11Kg and on the way back gained 7Kg and I’m pretty sure that was mainly peanut butter M&Ms.
Our final stop of the day before heading back to Boston was Plymouth.
Plymouth for me was a must visit. Both James and I grew up a few miles away from Plymouth, Devon and first properly met at a gig in Plymouth. Seeing Plymouth Rock and the town itself had its own special meaning.
Plymouth was founded in 1620 by the first pilgrims to reach North America, coming from England on the Mayflower. This makes Plymouth one of the oldest settlements in the USA.
After fleeing from religious persecution under King James I&VI, the settlers reached Plymouth and signed the Mayflower Compact, a document used for governing the new settlement. William Bradford was one of the first to sign the document. He later become a governor of the settlement and historian of all its events. Here is a statue in honour of the governor:
Many settlers died in the first year of settlement. It took a while to get used to the climate and terrain as well as disease that spread through the camp. A memorial can be found at Plymouth remembering those who died. The Native American Wampanoag tribe under the guidance of Massasoit Sachem helped the pilgrims settle and sought an allegiance with them, since many Wampanoags had contracted smallpox and died. Massasoit has prevented the failure of the settler colony by providing them with food and helping them seek shelter. There was peace between the two groups until Massasoit died.
Every Thanksgiving since 1970, Native Americans of New England meet and protest the genocide of their people, known as the National Day of Mourning. Recently, protests have taken place on Cole’s Hill the site of the Statue of Massasoit; overlooking Plymouth Rock, a fitting place to remember those who were lost.
After watching the beautiful sunset over Plymouth harbour, we knew it was time to return to Boston.
James made a time-lapse of the sunset over the harbour in Plymouth. Check it our below:
Back to the airport
The drive back to drop off the car was relatively uneventful. We had had a busy day out and lots of driving. We found ourselves reminiscing about the day and enjoying our music one last time before we had to return the car.
At this point of our holiday, we were about half way though our American trip but I already felt a sense of loss when I returned the car to Logan airport. I loved driving that car and it was worth every penny.
Next time I rent a car in the USA, I know exactly what I’m going for. What a great day we had.