It hit us both at the same time upon spotting the "Welcome to New York" sign. We have come quite the distance in two and a half months, 4000 miles to be exact. It’s hard to get further east than New York without hopping a boat to Europe (the thought has entered our minds). Northwest New York looks and feels a lot like Oregon. Shortly after crossing the state line we visited our first winery of the trip, which prompted us to visit the next one just a mile down the road. After that, we pedaled down the street with a new found sense of confidence and a slightly altered equilibrium. The experience got us excited for San Francisco and the Napa valley; we probably won’t make it half the day without finding the ditch.
We continue to be spoiled by the people we meet. A lovely couple by the names of Brette and Matt invited us over to their campsite for a friendly game of Scrabble over a few drinks. It was great to socialize with people so close to our age, though it felt a little odd being older with fewer responsibilities. Great people I tell you! Upon arriving in Buffalo, we were greeted by a torrential downpour and some of the least friendly drivers all trip. Car horns and squealing tires were the norm. Luckily, once we met up with our hosts, Robert and Samantha, they took us in and pampered us. We must have looked like a couple of wet cats someone drug out of the lake. Last summer, Rob and Sam had taken an awesome road trip around the US, and that night we had a terrific time browsing through their photo album and listening to stories of their travels. The next morning they escorted us to the local farmer’s market and showed us more fabulous architecture in their neighborhood. Fantastic hosts and tour guides to boot! The mood of the city seemed to have transformed overnight and we had clear skies and courteous drivers for our journey to Niagara Falls.
The falls were spectacular. One of the seven wonders of the world, the display of hydraulics did not disappoint. I rode the Maid of the Mist, a tour boat that takes passengers to the base of the falls. The included rain ponchos were not optional as the mist generated from the 180 ft drop of the Horseshoe Falls was enough to soak you to the bone. Such a sight cannot be done justice by pictures, but I still tried (more pics on our photos page). It’s sights like these that remind us of our place in the universe and how small we are. After viewing the falls, we met up with Brenda and Richard, a delightful Canadian couple that invited us to camp in their yard. The following morning they treated us to some tea and some terrific conversation before sending us on our way that day. *Authors note: I accidentally deleted this entire post before publishing and had to re-write – silly web browser*