Last week, I had taken Friday off from work so I could drive up to Hampton Beach for their annual Seafood Festival and attempt to get a head start to beat traffic, parking, etc. Unfortunately- I hit a pretty tight bumper-to-bumper snag on the highway that threatened to set me back considerably time-wise. It looked like a lot of people had the same idea as me!
Not wanting to spend the majority of my Friday stuck in my car or struggling to find a parking spot under $20 near the boardwalk (spoiler: it’s impossible), I re-routed to spend the afternoon in Salem, Massachusetts instead- and while I didn’t get an oversized platter of crab cakes like I’d initially planned- I still had a lovely time!
Salem is a beautiful town- maybe one of my favorite places in Massachusetts- and it’s filled with so much history, gorgeous scenery, incredible restaurants/bars and a LOT of bizarre tourist traps. Tons of people flock there come October to get in on the Witchcraft and Witch Trial-related activities given the spooky spirit of the season (say that five times fast)– but I find that it’s usually more stressful than necessary to try and navigate anywhere near the place around Halloween. I prefer visiting during the “off” season, instead- and I highly recommend it to any tourist thinking of dropping in. Save your cash and your sanity and soak in the history and sights when it’s much less crowded!
Anyway, while I was in town- I stopped by the outdoor Witch Trial Memorial, right next to one of the oldest cemeteries in my state that is open to the public for viewing and visitors. There were a couple of tours going on courtesy of a nearby museum- but it wasn’t that busy and I managed to really take in the experience without interruption or distraction.
Following a quick sandwich and a coffee at one of the local cafes (and successfully managing to dodge vendors who approached me offering to read my palm or throw sage on me for a pretty penny)– I headed a few miles north to Wenham, Mass- where I made a stop at Tendercrop Farms to stretch my legs. I ended up marveling at some of their produce and strolled through an endless field of sunflowers while I was there and a rainstorm was approaching from a distance- which made the afternoon feel a little more thrilling as the clouds rolled in.
I managed to snap a couple of photos before it started sprinkling out and I had to jog back to my car to keep my camera (and my Elantra’s interior- since I had left my windows rolled down!) from getting wet- but my brief time there was so pretty. I’d love to go back and pick a pumpkin in a few weeks!
Although my day didn’t go quite as planned- it was still an adventure and I’m glad it took the turn that it did. The unexpected stops during an unscheduled journey can sometimes be the most fun and exhilarating- and I started compiling my Autumn playlist while I was on the road, too- which I should have up and ready to go by this coming Friday! Most people know how much I love putting together seasonal soundtracks- so it’s been a lot of fun for me to pick and choose the songs I wanted to use from a whole bunch of new releases from some of my favorite artists!
I’m heading into work now to get my mid-week tasks done before I prepare for a belated-birthday dinner/party for my little niece tomorrow night with my family- so enjoy your Hump Day, everyone! We’re almost to the weekend!
– Ashley –