New Jersey is much maligned, in part, because the parts you see from New York City are marshes and industrial wasteland; driving into Elizabeth over the Goethals Bridge always reminded me of the Descent Into Mordor. But it's also beautiful -- the Kill Van Kull, the marshes, and an uncommon view of the Statue Of Liberty. Bayonne is also a nice old town with a real downtown and some charming old storefronts. And a Times Square completely free of tourists and chain stores.
And the Bayonne Bridge itself is beautiful, a very distinctive arch that has graced the covers of many Port Richmond High School yearbooks -- my high school is almost underneath the bridge -- with a separate walkway. I took a few nostalgia shots in Staten Island -- PRHS, Ralph's Ices, my old neighborhood park -- and then sat on the Brooklyn side of the Staten Island Ferry going home.