Upstate New York reminded me a lot of upper Michigan, which I guess makes sense if you think about it. The hills strewn with pines and the presence of Lake Ontario felt all around even when not in sight by the squeals of seagulls and the abundance of sand on the ground. One of my stops was on Wellesley Island, which lies in the channel of the St. Lawrence River, between Canada and the U.S. mainland. I-81 runs right over the southern portion of the channel onto the island across the 1000 Islands Bridge. It's a small island, just big enough for the town of Fineview, NY, a state park, a handful of duty-free shops, and the U.S. Customs operations at the border.
After that stop I headed for Massena, NY, my final stop. Messena lies about 70 miles northeast of the 1000 Islands area, also on the banks of the St. Lawrence. There were an abundance of scenic view stops along the way, so I took advantage of one. I got out and took these pictures of the St Lawrence.. Just for shits and giggles I grabbed Fubu out of the truck and set her down on the big grassy area. She's always been an indoor cat, so she wasn't quite sure what to think. She would hunker down and stay close to me. Occasionally a butterfly would bounce by and she'd forget her fear for a moment and chase after it for about two seconds then remember that she was a fraidy-cat and stop dead in her tracks, turn around, and crawl back to me. We laid and played in the grass for about fifteen minutes then got on our way.
Along the way I saw a very (unintentionally) funny sign. It read:
Over the next two days I got my backhaul in Pennsylvania and got back into Illinois on Friday afternoon. I'll be back home in God's country sometime Saturday morning. Plans are to spend more time with my grandmother who is still visiting from Virginia and see my kids. Real exciting, huh?
I had another thought about my TV watching from last weekend that I failed to mention. I watched some Adventures of Pete and Pete reruns! I loved that show so much. It's a shame there's only a handful of seasons. It was hip, clever, intelligent, hilarious entertainment: qualities that are rare in most children's entertainment. The episodes I saw? The one where they go on the fishing trip in hunt of "Bob" the giant bass featuring a great cameo by David Johanssen as a psychotic forest ranger. The other was the episode of little Pete's first school dance, the one of about three epsodes with Iggy Pop in the recurring role as Nona's (pre-hottie Michelle Trachtenberg) father with Luscious Jackson as the band playing in the gym. The scene where Iggy does some of his skank-dance moves with Nona explaining to Pete that he will be a chaperone at the dance and will want to dance with her is priceless television entertainment. Pete and Pete had the best guest stars ever: the afore mentioned plus Michael Stipe as a burned out ice cream vendor, LL Cool J as little Pete's math teacher, Syd Straw in a recurring role as big Pete's math teacher, Marshall Crenshaw, Kate Pierson and Fred what's-his-name from the B-52's as some local neighbors, Adam West as little Pete's principal, Chris Elliot as a utilities meter man, Bebe Neuwirth as a postman.... and so many more. Later that night, I decided to watch Radio Free Roscoe, the new show from the creators of Pete and Pete. On the surface, it sounds like it might could be as interesting. A group of friends run a secret pirate radio station in their high school (Roscoe High, get it?) and it appears that most of the action centers around the principal trying to find out the identities of the on-air talent so he can shut it down. Unfortunately, it tries too hard to be hip, clever, intelligent, and hilarious and fails miserably. The episode I watched was mostly boring, with the possible exception of this stereotypical goth-chick which was midly amusing. I ended up switching to something else about halway through. It has none of the surreal nature that made Pete and Pete so charming. There are no cool nickanmes like Pitstain, Hairnet, Drawstring, Dead End Mike (or was it Endless Mike?), Pink Eye, Wayne the Pain, etc etc. No one with metal plates in their heads, neurotic Krebscout girls, girls with perpetual broken arms, or personal superheros. No running jokes like the Acme-esque Kreb corporation, the International Adult Conspiracy, and fascination with hot lather machines.