The Secret's Revealed
New Jersey is a bad joke to many. The American talk show hosts love to mock the state. And it’s true that if the only part of the state you’ve seen is the New Jersey Turnpike on your way from Liberty Airport in Newark, it does look bleak. When you tell people you’re from Jersey, they ask you one of two questions to determine what part of the state you’re from: What mall do you live near or What exit?
Well, I’m going to reveal a secret I know I shouldn’t. Since NJ is the most densely populated of the fifty states, it’s not much of a secret to those of us who live here, but here goes. New Jersey is an amazing place to live. Whether you live north, central or south you are a mere hour away from something else entirely. If you live in the center of the state you either live on the coast, or you’re a short ride away from fabulous beaches. True, we do pay fees which is an entirely ridiculous concept. But you have your choice of quiet, fishing beaches and bays, surfing beaches, family beaches with boardwalks and rides and games, or...well, you get the idea. The choice is yours.
Depending on where in the state you live, you are also a short ride away from the mountains. Or from New York City. Or Philadelphia. Or Atlantic City. And, of course, if shopping is your thing, there are all those malls.
Usually, we get three great seasons of outdoor weather. Four if you’re a winter person which I am not. Then, if it’s a good year for snow (an oxymoron), we even have skiing.
Springtime is one of my favorite times. You can smell the earth and it’s damp and green and in late April and early May, the world explodes with flowers and the chartreuse new green of the trees bursting back after a long, dead winter. Everything looks like an impressionist painting. Restaurants put their tables outside and you can sit, enjoy a glass of wine and watch the lovely spring unfold. My favorite outdoor sport!