Road Trip – West Coast/East Coast 1960

My family relocated from the West Coast to the East Coast of America in the Fall of 1960. This  involved  a road trip  from Seattle, Washington to Baltimore, Maryland. My first big travel adventure. We were off to see America. America to me prior to this adventure as my previous blogs attest was the beautiful Pacific Northwest. My childhood home. My maternal Grandfather Harry Logan was born here. His claim to fame was 1,000,000  feet of timber felled by his own hand. He was a big, strong man, his hand easily holding his great grandson’s head when I brought him back to meet him many years later. His wife my Grandmother died before I was born. Stories told of her  are of luminescent stars pressed onto the ceilings to engage the imaginations of my older sisters and brother.   My mother and my father met on Orcas Island around 1938. My mother was visiting for the day and my father was part of Roosevelt’s new deal on a crew of teenagers on a conservation crew upgrading the park. I left all connection to my Swedish father and that side of the family there, until later in my life. The nourishment of this side of my family and the scenic beauty of my birthplace still gives a profound sustenance for me to this day.Mount Ranier was ever-present in my sight line where ever I would go. I was six years old when I said goodbye to family, friends and place that had held me in their gentle embrace during this coming of age. I was on to other adventures and I was curious, afraid and ready. What lay in store for me? A road trip across  1960’s America. The trip involved  6 passengers two cars and a train. The car we were driving would be replaced with a brand new model picked up at the factory somewhere in the Midwest. I was introduced to the concept of a restaurant “chain” on this trip Howard Johnson’sbecame a familiar term by the time we arrived at our destination. As some of you may remember this was a motel/restaurant combination popular at the time. Now I understand the  menu was standard diner fare of the period and the draw was predictability and convenience. That is not my 6 year olds recollection. This was a destination experience, on some days of the trip the lodgings were nondescript and the meals could be bologna sandwiches, on the occasions we came upon the Howard Johnson’s it was a take a shower, get dressed and sit down to dinner experience. It was special event and by the end of the trip I had memorized the menu and knew all of my favorites by heart. One of the simple pleasures was the strawberry ice cream cone. It truly did look like the picture to the right. Large chunks of fresh strawberries in creamy ice cream on a waffle cone. Breakfast for me usually consisted of eggs, bacon, toast and potatoes if we could choose whatever we liked or oatmeal if time and budget reigned. I like oatmeal. It is a reliable morning meal in cold weather to this day. At six, I  liked it with brown sugar and butter. Now, protein powder rice milk and toasted almonds are my preference. Looks like it will take me a few blogs to travel the distance from West to East.

English: Entrance to a Howard Johnson's full-s...

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