Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Monday, July 31, 2017

New York State of Mind

Hello Barefooters,

As the Summer rolls on, I'm continuing to rack up barefoot miles, although still not at any record setting pace.  We've had some cooler, rainy weather lately, but overall it is turning out to be a pretty normal Summer so I am getting in some really good longer morning runs with the headlamp.  Sunrise is noticeably later now than it was in late June which causes me to have to leave on the headlamp later and later.  I do enjoy being able to come back after my runs and dive into the pool in the backyard to cool down prior to showering up for work.
Saratoga Spa 5-Mile Trail
Sarah on the Trail

This past week I've been on vacation in NY with my family.  We had a wonderful, relaxing week making memories as a family.  The vacation actually started last Friday evening with a drive up to Howe in northern IN to visit Linda's Mom and Dad, Frank and Mary, and to celebrate Mary's 80th birthday a few days early, before beginning our drive out to NY.  We took the family out for breakfast at the Howe Diner on our way out of town.  The first night was spent in Geneva in the Finger Lakes Region of NY.  Then we continued on to our main destination:  Saratoga Springs, NY. 
S'mores by cabin in Saratoga Springs

My wife Linda had booked us a cabin in in Saratoga Springs from which we were able to launch our daily sight-seeing excursions.  It was a nice "tiny house" which comfortably slept the 5 of us.  We had a fire-pit off to the side which allowed us to make a fire and some S'mores on one of the non-rainy nights and and enjoy the great outdoors.  At least two of the overnights were rainy so we were appreciating the fact we weren't in our normal tent and fighting the dripping ceiling!  I skipped running the first morning in Saratoga Springs due to the rain but was able to run each of the next four mornings.  Each day I did the same 7.9 mile out-and-back down the mountain to the restaurant in Wilton NY.  This allowed me to stretch the legs on more hills than I am used to in my normal flat Indiana running.

Our daily excursions took us into the Adirondacks, one day to the Adirondack Museum at Blue Mountain Lake, another day to Saratoga Spa State Park and another to "The Wild" at Tupper Lake, NY.  Each day we got in a lot of hiking and I got a chance to break in my new Merrill hiking shoes which I was hoping to use on my upcoming 2-week Appalachian Trail hiking trip in September.  However, on the second day which included a 5 mile loop hike at Saratoga Spa, I began to develop a blister under the callous on my left pinky toe...same toe that caused me so many problems on my last AT hike two years ago...So much for spending the money on "good" hiking boots because these were the same as my cheapie hiking shoes which I left behind in Liberia after my January mission trip.  Its the same old, same old...I HATE SHOES!!!  Maybe I will look into some heavy duty hiking sandals before Sept. rolls around.
Times Square

Anyway, after 4 days we checked out of the cabin, parked the car at the Saratoga Springs train station and took the 4-hour Amtrack ride to New York City for two nights in our Time Square hotel, the Gallivant...again all booked by Linda (she is a pretty good travel agent!)  I had left the hiking shoes in the car and only brought my sandals to NYC and was VERY happy about that choice.  We did a LOT of walking in NYC, one day walking all the way from Time Square to Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan to view Lady Liberty.  We also took in the 9/11 Memorial Museum at ground zero.  This was an excellent museum and I highly recommend for anyone visiting the city.  It was very well done and brought back (somewhat regretfully) all the same emotions I felt in the days, weeks, months after 9/11.  This was an excellent, unedited and un-politically-correct version of the events of that time period and there was a LOT of detail I hadn't seen before.  Believe it or not, it was actually somewhat overwhelming to be there and I saw many reduced to tears at the displays...Linda and I both became emotional at different times during the visit but both at the display showing the jumpers and the discussions by those who had witnessed this.

We got to enjoy two Broadway shows while in town:  "Waitress" and "School of Rock."  Both were excellent, but "Waitress" ranks as the number one Broadway show I've ever seen (of the 6 I've experienced).  We also went to the NY Museum of Modern Art.  I was pleasantly surprised as it was very good and included Van Gough's "The Starry Night" as may Picasso's, Jackson Pollack's etc.  We got the full New York food experience and really enjoyed the late night "slice" and got pizza after each of the Broadway shows...it's fun eating pizza at Midnight with the family!

At Museum of Modern Art
Each of the two mornings, I got up and went running barefoot in the blocks around the hotel.  The Garmin was definitely more accurate than the I-phone app MapMyRun although both seemed to get confused from time to time with the tall buildings all around.  I only ran less that three miles each day and did have to dodge broken glass on a couple of occasions.  I ran with the headlamp the first day and without the second day as it was later in the morning and there are so many light around Time Square it's almost daylight 24 hours anyway!  I definitely wouldn't want to run all the time in NYC but for 2 days it was tolerable and gave me a chance to go out and get some GOOD food-truck coffee each day before the family woke up.

Amtrack Train from NYC back to Saratoga Springs

On Saturday afternoon we took the afternoon Amtrack train back to Saratoga Springs and then drove a couple hours to our last hotel which was also in the Finger Lakes Region, this time in the town of Auburn.  All in all, this was a very relaxing and enjoyable vacations with the family and I feel like we make some pretty cool memories.  God is Good!!

Enjoy What's Left of Your Summer!

Barefoot Dan

July Mileage = 206.98 Miles

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