Traveling in New York State
Traveling here has been
interesting exciting depressing confusing disconcerting fun but worrisome. Strangely enough, one of our more difficult issues has been getting meals. In the land of the free and the home of the fat (ie: modern America) you wouldn’t think that would be so difficult. Subway, McDonalds, Pizza Hut, and KFC are ubiquitous world-wide after all. That being said, if you only want the same stuff you can get in your own town, why leave town at all? And so our family ventures out, Mr. Hot Stuff boldly going where we have never gone before, to explore new foods and dining experiences, while I bring a tempering influence on his impulsiveness. While I like to try new foods and experience new places, I’ve seen enough Kitchen Nightmares shows to know that it’s important to love your own digestive health before you pity some poor sap’s flagging hole-in-the-wall restaurant. With those parameters established, we naively assumed that driving across one of the more populous parts of the country, we would be experiencing all kinds of gustatory adventures, and we have. The surprise has been how difficult it’s been to find these types of restaurants. We drive around a corner and see an inviting sign only to discover that yet another place has gone out of business. This happens over and over. Restaurants abandoned, wax paper cups and sandwich wrappers lying silently on the counters and shelves, waiting for someone to come fire up the stoves and reconnect the soda machines. Gas stations boarded up. Houses empty, barns vacant or falling down. Property for sale, trailer courts sprouting up like weeds – either booming or run-down – neither sort actually being a sign of prosperity. Down-town areas empty aside from a few shops white-knuckling out the bad economy.
Then we turn a corner and in the middle of a part of a town I’m scared to walk in, we come across an amazing restaurant run by a very friendly family, serving quality, excellent food. It was a halal Turkish restaurant. It was so welcoming and delicious, I felt guilty for not being able to eat more. (I was being Mrs. Huffenfeffer at the time and hadn’t actually even wanted to get out of the car – frankly a little concerned that it might not be safe to park there – but I was wrong.)
So, if you ever find yourself driving through Johnson City, NY, stop here during the daylight, and eat to your heart’s content. But hurry, I’m not sure how much longer they’ll last, God bless them.
At church last week, a man living in rural New York, said that his property taxes for his house are $300 per month. (Update: Upon further verification, I learned I’d misunderstood. The man’s house payment was $300 per month, his taxes were $600 per month.) His neighbor decided to fix up an old barn on his property rather than have it remain an eyesore and a fire-hazard had his property taxes go up by $3000 per year because of the improvement. I know of someone else who wanted to start some small businesses here but decided to go to a different state where the taxes and regulations were less oppressive and he could actually do some good without being punished for it. I wonder how many people here know who John Galt is?
winner-winner, chicken dinner 🙂
p.s. Soon, I’ll post cool photos and fun stuff we’ve done, but internet access is a little iffy on the road right now.