Data from the Notes app on your iPad sync with Mail. Yes, it's quite counterintuitive but that's where it is.
Notes can sync when you sync your iPad to your Mac via iTunes, or you can sync them "over the air" by linking them to an IMAP email account. Read this:
As an alternative to Notes on your iOS device and Mail on your Mac (which work fine, but aren't necessarily the best way to work with notes), consider a Dropbox-enabled app for your iOS device and any 'ol text editor on your Mac.
PlainText is free:
WriteRoom is $5. It is an advanced version of PlainText:
For your Mac, TextEdit would work fine. I prefer Bean:
You might prefer a different text editor. There are tons of them, many are free, some are available in the Mac App Store.