Friday, November 18, 2011

AEDM #16/17/18: Overwhelmed and prowling around

ridgewood-downtown

ridgewood-train-station

ridgewood-by-train-station

ridgewood-train-tunnel

ridgewood-coffee-company

ridgewood-houses

ridgewood-ny-post

ridgewood-train

ridgewood-bon-ton

ridgewood-dt-2

ridgewood-dt

ridgewood-leaf

This was the week I went from being a visitor to a resident. When I settle into a new spot, I prefer to observe, and if possible not really talk to anyone for about a month. But my kids started school this week, forcing me to shed my cloak of anonymity, and so I'm feeling a bit bare and vulnerable at the moment. When that happens, I hide. And there are so many places here to hide! Suburban towns in North Jersey are not suburbs in the sense of the new, large and planned variety. They are petite, established, old villages, each with their own history and distinct flavor, yet they somehow shift effortlessly from one to the next through winding hills and non-linear roads and streets. Chain and big box stores do exist here, but they cling to the highways -- or accurately put, they are directly on the highways, so you have to bust into the parking lot at about 55 miles an hour. Miss the turn, and too bad for you. Just keep going, and keep exploring. There are many better things to see than Office Depot. The villages themselves are much more polished than Lawrence -- I don't think I could get away with Marshmallow Peeping any of the downtowns, for example -- but they abound in vitality and old world charm. And with Post headlines like the one above, I think my escapes to NYC will more than provide my requisite doses of grit.

16 comments:

cath c said...

the little villages aspect to the suburbs in the northeast is exactly what i miss so much in my land of the subdivision. thanks for voicing it. great pics, too.

Daisy Yellow said...

Great pix, you have a good eye for "Interesting" and I hope you get a good dose of anonymity today.

mudstar ceramics said...

As a resident of Princeton, may I give you a warm New Jersey: WELCOME! Good luck in your new digs and hope that you find lots of nooks and crannies for your prowling, and lots of inspiration for you art.

xo Rae

Kim Hambric said...

Looks like a beautiful place. I'm off to Googlemaps for a little visit. Just after I get a handful of m&ms.

jerseytjej said...

Fab photos! I miss home (also NJ)and those could be lots of towns.

Chel said...

I have to admit, your photos make me long for the tri-state area. But this: "they are directly on the highways, so you have to bust into the parking lot at about 55 miles an hour. Miss the turn, and too bad for you..." made me LITERALLY laugh out loud because I grew up a few blocks away from good old Neconset Highway on Long Island, and that was pretty much it- big box stores on a 55 mile an hour "back road". It was quite an adjustment moving to small town Georgia, and then tiny island Florida.

Lisa G. (Happy Mama) said...

You are so right about the burbs, the big stores, and the highways. LOL I'm giggling at how right you are.

Hope your week has been good. xoxo

Bella Sinclair said...

I looove cute little eastern villages and towns. Not a big fan of those divided streets and jug handles, though. Your new surroundings are ripe for being Artsyfied!

Marcia (123 blog) said...

I do love your take on things!

You have such a good eye for spotting different, interesting and quirky.

chrissy said...

i know exactly how you feel my friend...i've been hiding for 5 months now in our new city....xo

soulbrush said...

soon you will feel right at home there, I know you will.

Patricia said...

Well you have certainly changed my very limited view of NJ!! The village concept did not even enter my mind. I was only thinking of suburban sprawl. Good luck in your new home.

lori vliegen said...

your new town looks absolutely charming! the residents there are lucky to have you! i KNOW you'll find lots of favorite little spots to hide out and be inspired!! xoxo

Marcie said...

Love the small village life here on the east coast. You have a great eye for poking around and documenting them.

Pattyskypants said...

So, did you land in Ridgewood?? My home town before I moved to MO! xxoo

Sharon said...

I recognize ALL of those places in this village I've lived in for 17 years! There's LOTS to know about this town. Looking forward to getting together.