Saturday, December 24, 2011

New Jersey Observations

We've noticed a number of characteristics about New Jersey that differ from our home in Utah.  Here are a few:

1)  You have to have a GPS to find your way around here.  We were skeptical but it is true.  Traveling from point A to point B is what sailors would call tacking and what I might call zigzagging.  There doesn't seem to be a straight line to follow.  That may be due in part to the many rivers and small mountain ridges here going north & south.

2)  There are a lot of small late model foreign (commuter) cars in NJ, as opposed to family-size vans and pick-up trucks in UT.  There are over 100 cars in our court and I've only noticed one van.  I also rarely see people.  They leave early in the morning and I don't know when they return because we are gone most evenings.  We've just seen a handful of children playing although there are some bikes and toys near apartment doorways.

This is the view from our doorway in the middle of the day.

3)  Many main roads have "jug handles" to replace left turns from the center of the road.  If you want to turn left, you first turn right on a little short curving side street, which lets you get in position to cross the main road (or turn left) when the light turns green.

4)  More people live here!  New Jersey is the most densely populated state with 1,189/sq. mile. It is also the second wealthiest.  
Utah is 41st most densely populated with 34/sq. mile and 45th in per capita income.  Although there are tons of houses and apartments here, in most areas the trees help mitigate the view.

A nearby shopping center has gorgeous fall colors.

We see more highways than cities.

5)  There are also large spaces of rich farmland as well.   (Hence: The Garden State).  We visited a lovely 300 acre farm about 3 miles away to buy our Christmas greens.  The farm has been in the same family for 13 generations, since 1713.   
This is just a farm we passed on one of our travels to a mission event.

On Thanksgiving Day we had a lovely walk with fellow CES Instructors along this riverbank.

6)  No one can have garbage disposals here because the sewage infrastructure is so old.

7)  You can't pump your own gas in NJ.  There are attendants that do helps the employment numbers.

8)  Most of the light poles seem to have solar panels, we assume to help supply power.

9)  People are required to recycle.

10) We may add to this as we go along.  We are loving each state in spite of and for their differences. 


  1. The jug handles! I remember the first time I drove in NJ, and driving several blocks looking for a place to turn left before I realized you have to turn right to turn left. I'm still confused.

    Fun observations. Keep 'em coming!

    1. I finally stumbled onto this box. I wanted to take a picture of the Dixon Manor but was otherwise engaged in moving daughter #2. We have begun getting the storms we should have had in December. So, there was a bit of snow on your old homestead. Currently, we await word of an impending G-Daughter. She goes to the doc today and, naturally, we have tickets to Brian Regan in Abravenel Hall. When you get back we should have 14 in all; seven of each variety. Glad you are enjoying the work. It is exciting to go to a foreign mission like Jersey. How is the Spanish and baking coming along? I forgot to mention that for a Service Project we re-roofed the Kujampa's house. Contrary to popular opinion I did not fall off. We are teaching another Primary class--mostly in English--and worrying about parents. That is our news.
      Claude and Marilyn