(>Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator)
Our car couldn’t be driven anymore – what next? We were lying outside the city of New York on a disused airfield, where there is also a campground and despite the urban background noise the snapping of the geese from the nearby Jamaica Bay are audible.
The nights were very fresh and lonely. Also we were long without any possibilities to communicate with the outside world. The nearby sports hall suddenly made a lot possible for us and with the open internet we were again in contact with the big world. The ranger team of the Jamaica Park also tried to solve our problem, so that we came to an acceptable solution. Thanks to bicycles we still had a certain mobility.
As already mentioned, the upcoming weekend did not make a quick solution for our Jeep easy, but in the course of the Saturday afternoon a repair possibility became apparent for the coming Monday. The recommended workshop on Rockaway also organised the pickup of our car, so that we once had a worry.
But our stay was inevitably extended by a few days here on the outskirts of New York. We also had to find a replacement for “our house”, because in the workshop the jeep could hardly be used as a sleeping place. For a few heavy dollars we found a warm bed nearby in a B+B, which we booked for the time being for another 2 nights.
On Sunday we finally wanted to experience New York, or better said Manhattan. During the journey we had already experienced New York “on Road”. The ranger recommended us the journey by ferry, so that we would get a real feeling of the size of the different districts.
The tip was really right. In this way, one slowly drives into the metropolis, gets from the bay a first impression of the size and a certain overview. And, it was and is really gigantic! We immediately understood why everyone was raving about this New York and what the immigrants experienced a hundred years ago, thousands of them passing the Statue of Liberty through the bay; we were in any case very impressed.
From the pier we walked through Lower Manhattan, encountered many well-known names like Wall Street, Broadway and other things that have already moved world history several times. In addition to the entire banking world, many museums, small parks and memorials are also omnipresent.
Very impressive and not without emotions we visited the memorial of September 11th, which is still visited by many people today and is considered to be short.
Chinatown was the last stop for this day and was again a world of its own. The colours, the smells and the hustle and bustle were almost unique, but also very tiring.
Late in the evening we took the ferry to Pier 13, waved at the Statue of Liberty and were already looking forward to the continuation in Midtown Manhattan, where many more sights await us. But until we got there, we had to wait with a little patience on the campsite in Jamaica-Bay, because appointments (Monday morning / towing jeep) in this city are not always kept as they were arranged.
Sometime on Monday afternoon the tow truck finally stood there and transported our jeep, including contents – us – to Rockaway, where the mechanics were already waiting for the car. Surprisingly, the wheel bearings were also immediately available and the same afternoon everything was disassembled and prepared for reassembly. The whole situation made us very confident again and we were looking forward to travelling again soon.
While screwing was being done in the workshop, the next day we took the metro to Manhattan in just over an hour to explore the middle part of the city. We dived out of the underground right in the heart of Midtown, at the edge of Central Park and walked south along the Broadway lifeline. Here you really can find everything: from junk shops to where the whole high society stream moves.
While on the street and the squares there was a lot of traffic and a lot of jugglers and street artists doing their best, inside there were many well-known brands and names doing a lot of PR with their products, according to the motto, whatever the cost, we are there.
It’s hard to imagine what’s going on here when some star from the theater walks over the red carpet on Broadway. The mood (…and the screaming) must then be much bigger and hardly imaginable.
At the United Nations (UNO) we were a bit disappointed: No flags or anything special! We were happy to see our Swiss cross again – under the many flags. Maybe we should have announced our visit before?
In Little India we ended our visit, enjoyed Far Eastern delicacies and made our way to the metro and with it to the edge of the city, from where the surf of the Atlantic dampened the urban noise.
Soon it was so far and we could finally take our Jeep again in possession. The wheel bearings like the dollars had been exchanged and already we were dashing over various highways southeast, later south around New York towards the south.
We crossed the toll bridges without touching any dollar and don’t know yet how to pay the toll; we neither have the EZ system nor can we cope with “Toll by Mail” because the system on the PC is “unavailable”. Maybe the FBI will look for us soon. 😉
In New Jersey we followed the coast and the many suburbs of New York for a short time, before we found more quiet ways and streets in the interior.
The difference between the main axes and the rural areas was strong, the traffic in urban suburbs enormously fast and the courtesy of the north is hardly to be found here. The indicated speeds are rather guideline values and red lights are often crossed as “dark green”. The horn is also a very important part of the car and it is used a lot.
On the side roads it was a bit more leisurely for us and after leaving the sparsely populated coastal region we soon found ourselves in nature again, where much forest and marshes are to be found, but also bigger cultures, where rice is cultivated, accompanied us on the way south.
And then, somewhere on a parking lot, I discovered a small pool of oil under the front left wheel. “What’s going on?” immediately went through my mind. At a closer inspection the second shock followed. Somehow oil has to escape from the differential and there is not too much of this greasy mass in it.
On the same day we went to a jeep workshop in the neighboring town of Atlantic City and the damage was quickly located: when changing the wheel hubs, the sealing rings inside the axle were apparently damaged; these now have to be replaced. Probably entrusting our vehicle to a “free” garage was not the right choice; it might not have been damaged in a jeep garage, but it can no longer be determined with certainty.
To our relief these parts were in stock in the workshop and for the following day – it was Friday – an appointment was made. Early in the morning we brought our jeep to the workshop and spent the time waiting in the nearby shopping centre, where my bike stole the old Carradice side pockets – the ones that were in Africa 30 years ago – and the little bearbell from my bike. I don’t know who can (still) use such a thing, but this is apparently absolute reality here and another damper on our part.
In the afternoon we went back to the workshop to pick up our vehicle. But the next bad news followed and another block to swallow! The tapered bearings in the differential housing had done their job, metal breakouts on the rollers demanded a replacement. But these were not in stock and had to be ordered. The workshop manager also showed himself to be very understandable, but also explained that they could assemble it this way, but the material could probably fail in a few hundred kilometres and the whole game would start all over again. Teeth grinding we decided for the repair and the again extended weekend in Atlantic City. The workshop boss got us another replacement car, so that we still had a certain freedom of movement and could visit our replacement accommodation, according to the motto: Made in USA – without a car nothing works!
We were forced to settle in a cheap motel on the edge of Atlantic City and were satisfied with the modest conditions.
But we enjoyed the gambling hell of the east in all variations – this place can satisfy nearly all desires and desires. In addition to the glittering world in the casinos, whole quarters with outlet shops ensure that the dollars won are brought back to the people as quickly as possible. And while looking at the Cesar statue in the casino of the same name, the words of the former Roman emperor came to my mind: “Bread and games, that’s how you have satisfied people in the country!
Outside on the beachwalk, although there were very fresh temperatures and a fresh breeze blowing around the ears, there was a lot of activity and also here the highest commandment applies: “See and be seen, whatever it takes”. And if you don’t want to go, you can get pushed over the beach walk for a few dollars.
Sunday was a bit more leisurely. We drove past the Schicky-Micky of the player city and followed the offshore islands and peninsula of the coast of New Jersey. Right after the center of Altantic-City it became much quieter and there followed holiday homes and holiday homes again. Soon we asked ourselves what people are doing here in summer. Do they all come from inland from their beautiful country houses here to the coast, where everything is crowded and each other stand on the beach in the sun? Nothing against this several kilometres long beach with the finest white sand, but when thousands of Americans are lying around here, it can suddenly get a bit narrower.
It was very special in Ocean-City, where I asked for a pup, because I was hungry and thirsty. I was immediately told that there was neither Pup nor alcohol here, but I had to go back to the mainland, after all they didn’t want to lose the reputation of a healthy family holiday resort. We simply don’t want to know how much of the demonized juices are stored behind the many walls of the holiday residences; this could probably leave some moralists speechless.
In Sea Isle our island hopping was finished and because of bridge repairs we could not continue our trip as planned. Through wide swamps and wetlands we went back to the mainland, and further partly through very pretty places along the highway to our domicile at the edge of the glowing towers of Atlantic-City.
For this evening we skipped the round in the casino, after all it should go on soon.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator