Firstly, I would like to wish everyone a happy and healthy 2016. Here’s to a great New Year. New moi! The new “me” part will require making and (yes) keeping my New Year’s resolutions.

I’m certain that mine are very similar to yours. (Let’s see if I get a head nod from you as you read mine.) The first one is always to eat healthier, then, of course, exercise more and shop less.

I know you must be wondering how you are going to get your kicks on Route 4, which was constructed in 1934 and stretches 10.83 miles from Route 20 in Paterson to the GWB. Well, you definitely can because there is something for everyone, if not on the highway, right off one of the many exits to the many great towns.

lindas-list-january-2016-bc-the-mag-01I was waiting for you to remember the TV series and song Get Your Kicks on Route 66. I’m humming the song as I’m writing. Route 66 was a West Coast thing; Route 4 is ours. Today—like every day—I get on Route 4 and head west where my first stop is to exit off on Grand Avenue and head to Englewood Hospital Medical Center Gift Shop (350 Engle Street, Englewood) to pick up reading glasses. I swear, I must have a gazillion pairs but I can’t ever seem to find them when I need them. But since the glasses are a necessity, this doesn’t count as shopping, so I’m still good on my resolutions.

So while I love the gift shop, to avoid temptations I scoot directly across the street to the Englewood Field Club (341 Engle Street). I don’t want to be late for my paddle game with my bestie Allison and the guys. Great game; thanks everyone. See you Sunday; same time, same place. Allison and I change and head back on Route 4 in search of lunch.

There are so many great choices both on and off the highway. And the winner is Capital Grille (1 Garden State Plaza Boulevard, Paramus), where we both order the seared citrus glazed salmon, which is simply delish and so healthy. Have to say that I’m feeling really good.

Next stop is Ethan Allen (85 NJ Route 4 East, River Edge). Off we go to meet Vilma Mirkov, the design center manager who has an incredible sense of style. The showroom is beautiful and she is a delight to work with. (And interesting side note: Ethan Allen and I will celebrate 60 years in existence in 2017.) I think it’s amazing the business has been on Route 4 for 58 years. Kudos to them! Can’t wait for my new bedroom set. Wait, you’re not counting that as shopping are you? OK, my conscience is saying, “Linda, you know you are never going to keep the “shop less” resolution because you are a shopaholic! Guilty as charged!)

OK, so now that we’ve resolved that issue, let’s go shopping for a new outfit. Route 4 has so many great malls and stores that it’s difficult to only choose one new outfit. Let’s stop and see Jane the general manager at Saks Off 5th (120 Bergen Town Center, Paramus).

I know, we all miss Saks and Benji, the great. But the good news is Route 4 leads you to the bridge, which leads you to Saks Fifth Avenue in the city on 5th Avenue, and you will find the fashionista icon Benji there. When I go visit Saks in the city I get off Route 4 in Fort Lee and take River Road straight to the New York Waterway Ferry (4800 Avenue at Port Imperial Boulevard, Weehawken). Once off the ferry, I hop on one of the buses and voila, I’m in Saks! Sorry, I got sidetracked but what can I say? When I talk about clothes shopping, I get excited.

Today’s purchase: a fabulous bracelet for me! See, I can keep resolutions. I’m keeping the New Year, New moi promise. My bracelet looks great with my new outfit. (Oops, guess I accidentally on purpose forgot to mention the new outfit.)

Oh, look, it’s almost time for Happy Hour. Hooray! I do hope you had as much fun reading the last Linda’s List as I did writing about my good times at happy hours. Where to go? There are so many, many choices on and off Route 4 to choose from. I’m meeting my besties—better known as gorg one and gorg two, aka Steph and Kim—at Morton’s (1Riverside Square Mall, Hackensack). I stop in for a quick beverage and say hi to Joe, the manager, and hang with the ladies for a bit. I’ll catch you both later for dinner I want to stop at Route 4 Hyundai (244 Route 4 East, Paramus) and check out an SUV. If you know me, you will know I’m chicken about driving my car in the snow, so I’m thinking of getting an SUV to drive in the winter months.

After Hyundai, I’ll check out a jeep at the Route 4 Chrysler Dodge Jeep showroom (315 Route 4 West, Paramus) after visiting both spectacular showrooms I m leaning towards a jeep. I’ll run it by Kim and Steph over dinner and get their opinions. I’m on my way to meet the ladies at Regina’s Steakhouse and Grill (827 Teaneck Road, Teaneck). The food is great, as is the service and atmosphere. After dinner I just get back on Route 4 and head east to my lovely crib. I’m amazed how Route 4 helped me accomplish my “to-do” list, but I’ve gotta get me a “honey-do” list.

What a great day thanks to New Jersey State Highway Route 4 and all of the wonderful businesses in our wonderful Bergen County and beyond. Thank you all for coming on the journey. Ciao for now!

Linda Barba is out and about every day of the week! Have something cool for her to check out? Just let us know! Email with “Linda’s List” as the subject. Also, check out her daily postings at

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