Cambridge

Cambridge, Maryland is on the eastern shore of Chesapeake Bay. My cousins own an original Tidewater there. It was nearly devastated during Hurricane Isabel, but in retrospect, that maybe wasn’t such a bad thing.

Sometimes we’re lucky, and our feet get the chance to walk on sacred ground. I am twice lucky, because my cousins own a house on that kind of ground.

Cambridge, MD, is located on a peninsula of the eastern shore of Chesapeake Bay. The peninsula is impaled by a maze of brackish creeks and inlets that get the better of the low lying land. One of the inlets is called Gary’s Creek, and there they have an original Tidewater home.

On average, the land appears only 18″ to 24″ above sea level, and the house was nearly destroyed during Hurricane Isabel. In retrospect, as is sometimes the case, that was more a blessing than a curse.

IMG_0817Since the disaster, a thoughtful and thorough reconstruction ensued. Although it demanded enormous amounts of their time and money, the place is infinitely better than it was before. Now, the house sits on a four foot raised foundation, and from its new perch, it makes it fairly certain it will only be a spectator of the next storm.

The cousins are crazy active people. They keep hectic schedules – with the ‘real’ part of their lives taking place in Silver Spring, MD.

Joan, who is a first cousin, is a high school special ed teacher in the public school system. She flies out the door before the sun’s up and returns a little before it goes down. Her boys, Thomas and Mathew, are busy nurturing a budding media company, Locastro Design. They keep a equally psychotic schedule. And Mikey, who is married, lives with his wife and new child at a safe distance from the mayhem. Although, he works at Amazon…and I think we’ve all read what that can be like. I get exhausted sitting on the couch just watching.

Traffic was heavy Mother’s Day weekend. We got a late start hoping some of it would pass. The road was full of pleasure seekers heading to Ocean City for a big annual festival. Whatever tensions the work week wound on, were shed the moment we turned down the long driveway leading to the house on the water’s edge, where the floorboards sit only a few feet above the tide line.

Joan’s one Mother’s Day request – “I want to wake up in Cambridge.”

Maryland

It’s nice to be riding in rolling hills again – among trees that grow higher than the knees.

Maryland is a tropical rain forest, compared to what’s west of West Virginia, along I-70. The road begins to twist and turn into the granite wrinkles of the Allegheny Mountains – a characteristic of road I haven’t seen for 2000 miles since the Rockies.

The forest gets thicker and greener the further east I travel and the road frequently traverses bridges spanning sizable rivers.

I arrived in Maryland excited to see my cousins. They are the family of my mother’s niece, her sister’s daughter, with a recent addition – baby Luca.

Family-Gif

Without question, my visit will be a trilogy of events: Food……conversation……and more food. Bob, the proverbial don, makes everything. You should try his Italian meatballs, Italian pasta, and Italian spaghetti sauce. But that’s not the extent of it, his repertoire is more diverse: he also makes Italian-style chow mien, Italian-style bacon cheese burgers, and Italian-style Hungarian goulash. There is no way around it, you either eat or you’ll be banished.

It’s wonderful to have family. We were the only part of ours who moved west and I sometimes wonder how life would be if we didn’t.

The bike needs some attention, mostly minor issues I bought with the bike. The front fork seals need replacing, the front brake needs rebuilding, and I’ll replace a tumbler lock that someone damaged trying to get into a saddle bag in Sacramento. She already got a well deserved bath, and I finally got to changing the oil in rear gearbox. She’s nearly ready to roll for more.

In the interim, the blog may go quite. I doubt you want to hear about picnics or motorcycle maintenance. But more will come – and if you Subscribe to the blog in the box above, the next post will be sent to you by email.

Ciao for now.

Frederick, Maryland

Cousins coming up next…But I’ll have to continue in the morning – my old eyes no longer see very well at night.

Cousins coming up next…But I’ll have to continue in the morning – my old eyes no longer see very well at night.

Silver Spring, where my cousins live, is a mere sixty miles further down the road – I could make it there by 10:00pm.

Though, my plan to discretely set up camp on their front lawn was regrettably thwarted by: (a) an artery clogging accident on the I-270, and (b) I can’t see a damn thing at night without my glasses.

The Econo Lodge is right off the highway. I’ll spend the night and carry on after rush hour in the morning. Besides, the comic routine of the night clerk, and the chat I had with a nice young lady, who smelled like she just took a shower, about the views and virtues of Donald Trump vs. Bernie Sanders, made the $64.75 I had to spend, worth it. I’ll let you guess who she was voting for.

House in Cumberline MDWhat a town Cumberland, Maryland is. I stopped here for fuel, earlier today, and decided to have a look around.

It appears as though the clocks stopped in 1902. The buildings are perfect examples Industrial Era architecture. Here are pictures of a handful of homes lining Washington Street.

The whole town is a gem.