Friday, November 25, 2011

Trip to New York: 1982

The summer of 1982 Cliff Elmore and I decided to attend and adoption conference in New York.  The year prior we had completed internships at Children's Service Society in Salt Lake.  I had spent the year as an adoption worker.  We had lofty goals of having our own international adoption agency, and attending this conference was gong to give us a leg up.  As part of the training the previous year we had directed an educational group at the Society for the adoption of older children, and this had given us a lot of background information on the adoption of older children.  We had helped with the logistics and attended an adoption seminar in Salt Lake, and this was the next step. 

Where Cliff was staying in Roosevelt

Boys Town

I had recently purchased a Ford Escort, and Cliff was doing his current year placement in Roosevelt, UT.  I picked him up, and we were on our way to New York.  We followed the traditional I-80 route.  Our first stop of any consequence was Omaha.  While there we visited Boys Town, and Strategic Air Defense.  Cliff had been in the Air Force and this was nostalgic for him.  I like the song "He Ain't Heavy He's my Brother" so Boys Town was my cup of tea.  It was a big boy's home and I at the time worked for the Utah Boys Ranch. 

Our next stop was at the State Fair in Iowa. We had a fun evening looking at booths.  There was a car race going on, and although we didn't attend, you could feel the power of the engines.  We visited the barns and saw lots of farm animals, including a bore that was aroused somehow, almost to he point of knocking the fence down trying to get to the next pen.  It was a very large bore. 

From there we headed to Chicago, I was gong to visit Jody, I girl I had a thing for, and Cliff's sister also lived in he area.  While there we took several side trips, including to Nauvoo and Carthage, an arboretum in Chicago, and to a state park with a water fall. We also took a drive through Chicago and stopped and waded in Lake Michigan.
Cliff at the arboretum

State Park

Mississippi at Nauvoo


Carthage Jail
Leaving Chicago we discovered that the direct road had a considerable toll, and decided to get off the main road, which took us into Canada.  We went under the Windsor Tunnel into Cnada, and cut across the country of Niagara Falls.  The falls were totally impressive.  I just remember thinking, if I should fall in there is nothing that would save me before I was over the falls.  Such power!

From Niagara we went to Palmyra, and got there just before closing time.  We then got off the toll road again, and took a back way to New York, driving past the Finger Lakes, and ended up at Ithaca.  Ithaca is a beautiful town.  We then went down the New Jersey side of the Hudson, and crossed into New York City going through a tunnel.  We stayed at the Waldorf Astoria, which was great fun, except for the cost of parking our car there.  After the first day, Cliff parked it by Grant's Tomb.  We didn't need it as there were buses and subway.  First day we toured the U.N.  We took subway to Greenwich Village and Washington Square where the  New York University is located.  Someone actually asked me if I wanted to buy drugs.  From there we walked to the towers and went up the World Trade Center.  What a view.  At that time I think it was the second tallest building in the world after the Sears Tower in Chicago. As part of the conference there was a bus tour through New York.  We took the Coney Island Ferry across and back, and saw the Statue of Liberty from the ferry.  We saw St. Patrick's Cathedral, which was next to the Hotel, and also bussed to Central Park where we walked through the park.  We didn't have money for museums, but we were able to take time and see a Broadway play, "Evita" with Patty Lupone and Mandy Patikin.  The only Broadway experience in my life.  We were able to get half price tickets in the same-day line.   Our last day there we took a drive in the car around New York, and were able to see a few of the other Burroughs besides Manhattan and go over the Brooklyn Bridge. 
Cliff and Judy

Grant's Tomb

The conference was the 1982 North American Counsel on Adoptable Children.  The keynote speaker was George Clements who is an African American Catholic Priest who had adopted a boy.  He gave a motivational speech based on "Accentuate the Positive, Eliminate the Negative, Grab onto the affirmative, and don't mess around with Mr. In-Between."  Senator Patrick Moynihan was also there.

Other people at the conference included Sandy Dreiss who was my supervisor at Children's Services, Judy who later became Cliff's wife, and the Dickey's, from Hyrum, who were there meeting an adoptive  son with Downs Syndrome. 

The return trip included more adventures than the trip out.  We started by visiting Philadelphia.  I touched the Liberty Bell, and we toured Independence Hall and the burial site for Ben Franklin. 
Washington Monument, and four views


Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Kennedy's eternal flame

After Philadelphia was Washington.  We spent a couple days there, sleeping in the car by a park.  Both Cliff and I came down with minor cases of food poisoning from eating old salad dressing that had been left in the car.  We toured the White House, went up the Washington Monument, went to Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, and visited the Smithsonian.  There is never enough time to see everything there, but we saw the movie in the Space and Aeronautics Museum, toured artwork museums, went through the Natural History Museum.  We also went to Arlington Cemetery to the tomb of the Unknown Soldier and to Kennedy's grave site. I also made it through a session of the Temple.
Grand Old Opry

Andrew Jackson Estate

Knoxville World's Fair

From Washington we traveled to Tennessee where we visited the World's Fair, saw the Grand Old Opry, not a show but just the old building which had closed.  We took the backstage tour.  (We wanted to see it in honor of Loretta Lynn and "Coal Miner's Daughter".)  We also saw the estate of Andrew Jackson.  From there we went through the area of the Tennessee Valley Authority, and then went North to Chicago, going through Southern Illinois area where I had lived a couple years growing up.  We then took the Northern route home. 

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