29 March 2004

New Jersey notes

During my visit to Princeton this past weekend, I stayed in nearby Hamilton, New Jersey. I wonder what would have happened at US customs if they had asked where I lived and where I was going and I had answered "Hamilton" to both. Confusion, at the very least.

The weather was lovely, with temperatures on friday and saturday as high as 20 degrees C. The crocuses were in bloom, and we even sat in an outdoor café on Nassau Street at one point.

The northern part of New Jersey was evidently part of Nieuw Nederland in the first part of the 17th century. That explains such names as Nassau in and around Princeton. In New Brunswick, where Rutgers University is located, the Reformed Church in America has a seminary, obviously a remnant of Dutch influence.

Railfans will be interested to know that there is a one-car electric train, or dinky, that runs between the Princeton campus and Princeton Junction, where it connects to the main passenger rail line between New York and Philadelphia. Service looks to be quite frequent.

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