A summer roadtrip with The Ukranian Delegation.

Mom organized a military memorial service for Uncle Ken, who passed during Covid 2 years ago… and it all went down last week in NJ.

I decided to drive up with Olga and Vlada.

Our first stop was South of the Border, a money laundering operation on the South / North Carolina border.

Vlada wanted to pet an alligator and handle some venomous snakes.

Olga looking lovely.

Brought home this guy in a shoebox….

There are a million different businesses at South of the Border, and they spend a gazillion $$$ on billboards up and down rte 95, yet the place always looks deserted, hence my money laundering theory.

The reptile house was worth the visit, only $8 per person!

Next day we saw DC:

The new WWII Memorial. Really awesome!

That night we finally reached NJ and Uncle Ken’s service was the next day. It was nice to get everyone together, the six of us live in 3 different states. Mom arranged for a nice lunch after the service, but 2 of my Dickhead Uncles blew it off.

They don’t read… this blog, or anything else.

My 73 year old mother moved Heaven and Earth to get everyone together, because she values family and she knows we’re all getting older. She might not get too many opportunities to see her brothers again… but they don’t really give a shit… so….

The cool folks went to lunch.

Nice pic with Mom and Dad.

The 4 siblings… George finally smiled.

That night I took Olga and her daughter to the Ocean City boardwalk.

I used to hang out in Ocean City in my teen and college years. It was a lovely Friday night, the view from the Ferris wheel was lovely.

The next day I took the Ukrainians into Philly to have a cheesesteak at Pat’s.

Cause yo, that’s how you do Philly.

That afternoon Andrea hosted a big get together at her house.

Vlada bonded with Henry the pug.

Morning coffee with Olga at Da Holiday Inn.

The next day we drove 2 hours north to see NYC. We started with the 9/11 Memorial.

Everyone should go see this. Very moving.

We drove uptown to see Times Square. It was hot and dirty and crowded. Pics look better than the reality. I’m not a huge fan of crowded and expensive cities like New York City. The roads and tunnels look old and torn up, 30 minutes of parking cost me $45…. I think people glamorize places like this when in reality New York CITY is a stressful place.

We got on the road that night and headed back South. We stopped in DC to have dinner with Olga’s friend from Kyiv who now lives in DC.

Lotsa Ukrainians are spread out all over the world since the Russian invasion.

They were lucky to get out alive.

Olga has friends that stayed in Ukraine who have been missing since March.

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Nice thing about a road trip is the ability to stop anywhere on the way home, on Monday we had lunch in very pretty Charleston, SC.

I’ve never been, Charleston is a lovely town on the South Carolina coast:

Charleston is an hour’s drive east of rte 95, with Civil War era buildings and lotsa really good restaurants.

If I wasn’t keen to get home we would have stayed longer…

Our LAST stop was Buc-ee’s.

Biggest gas station in the Universe !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

80 cars can gas up at the same time!

Pulled pork sammitches!

Redneck Heaven!

I’m back now, writing this on my home computer, so don’t try to rob my house.

Ben Alexander

June 28th : 2022