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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

License Plate Tag

I've wanted to write about our vacation trip to Williamsburg, VA, but haven't been able to carve out the time to do it justice. So I'll just tell you about the state plates we saw. I was particularly curious this trip because I wondered wwhether the price of fuel would dampen the travelers.

We started in Albany on a Saturday, to NJ to south central PA, where we stopped overnight to see Carol's brother, his wife and their daughter. Then the next day did the rest of the trip through MD to VA. Thursday, we returned to the brother-in-law's abode, then back home.

On each leg of the trip (south and north), we managed to see all the states and places (like DC) from ME to FL, plus three Canadian provinces: Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia. We also spied, both ways, OH, MI, WI, KY, TN, AL, TX, OR, CA, and plates for US Government. We caught OK both ways, but they were trucks in both cases. We saw cars from AK (ALASKA!) and MN on the way down, and a truck from those states - and I mean one truck, with one plate on the cab and another on the trailer, on the return trip. There was a MS truck on the return trip.

But I was most excited to see, on the way down, a HI car! Someone transported a car from Hawai'i to, presumably, California, and has been driving around the country, I'd guess.

The states I didn't see at all were primarily in the mountain region: WA, ID, MT, CO, WY, UT, AZ, NM, NV, ND, SD. I was surprised not to see Colorado, which I usually catch every trip, and slightly surprised not to see the southwest states. I'm now thinking that finding a Wyoming plate on an East Coast trip is the gold standard.

I must say that it's getting harder to identify some plates when you're going 55 or 65 MPH. There are so many variations. The site here addresses some of them.

A standard Maryland plate looks like this:

But I saw this plate

and initially thought it was from AZ or NM.

Likewise, the PA plate:

This variation I'd recognize:

This variation, not so much:

Anyway, the first day back to work, in downtown Albany, what do I see? Something I didn't see in almost 1300 miles of traveling: a Colorado license plate.


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