Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Jersey Girl (& Boy)

We spent almost a decade away from New Jersey, where both of us were born and raised. There was a lot we came to love about the Baltimore-DC area, and we really do miss it, but as our 20s waned, we really found ourselves missing our home state. Where else can you can ski, swim in the ocean, and visit farm country, all just an hour away from New York City? There's the literary legacy of Paterson, the pomp and circumstance of Princeton, the colorful populism of underdog Newark, and the Appalachian enclaves of Sussex County's cow country, not to mention the nation's largest poetry festival. Of course, a trip down the Turnpike illustrates where Jersey gets its negative stereotype, but what many don't realize is that Manhattan's finest restaurants would be lost without the excellent products from our favorite local creameries and farms.

When we returned to NJ in 2005, it took us a year or two to hit our stride, seeking out the wine makers, mushroom lovers, biodynamic farms, renowned herbalists, and the best mozzarella in the world (better than Blue Ridge, even!). But now we're firmly entrenched, happy to live in a place where we've found such a diverse wealth of wise, friendly people happy to impart their gardening and artisanal knowledge.

We're sure that other folks are as passionate about their regions as we are about NJ. What are you grateful for in your area? Or for that matter, what do you like best about Jersey?


christina said...

I'm From New Jersey
Written & Music by Red Mascara
Verse (Ad lib)

I know of a state that's a perfect playland with white sandy beaches by the sea;
With fun-filled mountains, lakes and parks, and folks with hospitality;
With historic towns where battles were fought, and presidents have made their home;
It's called New Jersey, and I toast and tout it wherever I may roam. 'Cause . . .

First Chorus

I'M FROM NEW JERSEY and I'm proud about it, I love the Garden State.
I'M FROM NEW JERSEY and I want to shout it, I think it's simply great.
All of the other states throughout the nation may mean a lot to some;
But I wouldn't want another, Jersey is like no other, I'm glad that's where I'm from.
Second Chorus

If you want glamour, try Atlantic City or Wildwood by the sea;
Then there is Trenton, Princeton, and Fort Monmouth, they all made history.
Each little town has got that certain something, from High Point to Cape May;
And some place like Mantoloking, Phillipsburg, or Hoboken will steal your heart away.


MK said...

Debbie Harry, Allen Ginsberg, and Buzz Aldrin are all from here. And so are disco fries.

MK said...

And Sarah Vaughan and Count Basie....

Kate said...

Two comments! MK, you really do mean business. Now I've got to reciprocate.

I listened to that song, Christina, and it reminds me of Tori's song about Baltimore--so servicey it makes me cringe and laugh. Also, I can't imagine Phillipsburg stealing anyone's heart away, except maybe all those ex-cons who live there.