It inevitably always happens. I’m asked to review a car for a week and I HAVE ABSOLUTELY NOWHERE TO GO. And by nowhere, I mean not even a trip to downtown Baltimore 45 minutes away. Or into Washington, DC about 90 minutes away. Or even to Hershey, PA – a good 2 hours away. All of which would have been great trips to try out a vehicle. All trips I’ve taken since I’ve reviewed the 2016 Mazda CX-5. But it doesn’t matter. I didn’t have to go far to find out how much I loved this vehicle.
A typical week involves sitting at home, behind a desk and behind a keyboard. There are literally days when I realize I haven’t set foot outside. My husband also works from home and he’s a little more antsy so he probably gets around a bit more.
But some days, we meet in the middle (no, seriously, like the middle of the house) and say, Hey – you wanna go out for lunch?
It took us a few years to realize that with a child in school and work from home jobs, we don’t have to wait for date night. We can sneak out for a grown-up lunch without having to worry if there’s a kid-friendly menu. Usually it’s a quick trip to one of the restaurants in town but I decided to push the limits and ask my husband if he wanted to drive the extra 15 minutes to downtown Sykesville. And off we went.
Originally, I wanted to take him to the cutest little crepe shop called the French Twist Cafe where I usually get La Parisienne (goat cheese, walnuts, cranberries, fresh baby spinach, and pesto) followed by the Crêpe Papa (fresh lemon juice and sugar). I could see the hesitation in his eyes. He wants a MAN’S meal. So we headed to E. W. Beck’s, a longstanding pub in town.
As with most small town streets, parking is at a premium so I had to actually parallel park the Mazda CX-5. Just as I was getting ready to pull in behind a rather show yellow Corvette, Sean suggested that perhaps I wanted to find an easier parking spot.
I assured him that the Mazda CX-5 had an amazing back-up camera (a must-have for me these days) but I took the hint and drive safely to a nice wide pull-in spot.
But even then, I knew I needed to be careful as I saw evidence that probably one too many drivers has indulged at the pub and then attempted to safely drive away. Whoopsie!
It wasn’t until after lunch that I realized that Sykesville was the perfect backdrop for my new favorite vehicle.
In 1825, George Patterson, son of a wealthy shipbuilder, sold 1000 acres to James Sykes, the man for who Sykesville is named. In 1831, the B&O Railroad extended its line into the current town and it became an important train depot and tourist spot. In fact, the original train depot is now a successful restaurant called Baldwin’s Station. If you sit outside next to the tracks, you will have to hold onto your drinks when a train goes by as the line is still active.
It’s clear the entire town is strongly influenced by the 1800s as you can see Victorian houses on the outskirts of town and walk along Main Street (yes, it’s really called Main Street) into the most unique shops, including an upscale barber, and a chocolate and wine shop.
And even though modern business has moved into downtown Sykesville, you can still see the preservation of the merchants that once populated the town.
I learned that Wade H.B. Warfield, for whom both of these buildings were named, was a merchant and President of the Sykesville Bank.
To this day, a small but quaint downtown Sykesville is experiencing a revitalization. You’ll still see a nod to train history throughout (there’s an old railroad car in the background used as a train museum) but new restaurants and shops are opening up and there are surprisingly plenty of parking spaces back behind many of the old storefronts.
As we drove out of Sykesville and back to our modern mecca of Eldersburg, I focused on my driving and how much I loved the roominess, comfort, and visibility that I easily found in the Mazda CX-5.
And apparently I’m not the only one who feels that way. Suddenly I saw the CX-5 everywhere I went!
Whether it’s in a parking lot or parallel parked on a historic downtown street, this Mazda CX-5 was fun to drive, equipped with great technology, and designed for a smart intuitive driver.
I was provided the 2016 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring AWD vehicle for a week to facilitate this post. This fully loaded model has a Total MSRP of $32,340 which I consider a steal for a luxurious and versatile vehicle like this one.