I’ve found one drawback to being a nomad who wanders the countryside to inspire others to be outside more: it means a lot of moving. Case in point: in the past 13 days, Kim and I have driven over 2,500 miles and have had 8 events. That’s almost like I have a job or something…..oh wait……
Every day has been a routine: pack up campsite or hotel room, drive for 3 to 6 hours, set up camp/hotel room, drive another 30 to 60 minutes to arrive at an outdoor store, work for a 4-5 hours, drive back to campsite/hotel and go to sleep. Wake up & repeat.
Anyway, I don’t tell you this to belly-ache or for your pity. I mention this to say that I’ve been busy. Basically, it feels like every day has been a travel day – and anyone who travels know that travel days can suck: you eat like crap, you’re exhausted by the time you arrive to your destination, and normally your patience with your travel partner has been, well, I’ll say stretched.
So, a few days ago, Kim and I had the luxury of setting up camp and having the same place to rest our heads for three days – three whole days!! And somewhere the travel gods smiled upon us and gave us some temperatures in the mid-70s, which was a nice break from the stretch of 90+ degree weather we’ve been dealing with.
So where did we get to rest our heads? A nice little park called Letchworth State Park outside of Rochester.
Many years ago, I vaguely remember my family taking a vacation to Letchworth State Park. It bills itself as the Grand Canyon of the East and there is some white water rafting that is available to visitors. On paper, it sounded good.
Now, after visiting as an adult, I have no idea what my parents were thinking all those years ago – because there is absolutely nothing to do but hike in this park, and there is nothing around it within an hours’ drive in all directions. It was great for what Kim and I had in mind, but I now pity my poor parents and aunt & uncle to had to try to entertain 7 kids for 2 weeks in the middle of nowhere.
Kim and I don’t have little ones to entertain, so it was perfect for what we had in mind, which was a bunch o’nuthin. We slept in, eased into our days with extra cups of coffee, hiked, read our books, and sat by campfires at the end of the day. In other words, it was a nice, relaxing weekend – something we haven’t even thought about in over two years and forgot how luxurious a few days can feel when you’re working.
One of the hikes we did was called the Gorge Trail. It followed the Grand Canyon of the East for 7 miles and took you to viewpoints to see three waterfalls. It was scenic and pretty, but I have to put Grand Canyon of the East in italics because someone has yet to create sarcastic font. Let’s just say that this canyon was like the real Grand Canyon just like all those men on match.com are listed as 6’ tall: a bit of a stretch.
But after Kim and I got over our eye rolls and snarky comments (seriously: the GRAND CANYON is over 6,000 feet deep. The Grand Canyon of the East doesn’t reach 600 feet in depth – oh, but they are just soo much alike. Ok, so maybe I had one last snark left in me) we had a good day. We did get some great views of waterfalls, got to spend a day hiking through the forest, and were trail-tired at the end of the day.
It was the kind of day that makes us appreciate the life we have, because although the past couple of weeks have been quite hectic, this is the kind of day we have more often than not, and I feel lucky to be in this position.
Sometimes it just takes a little taste of what life could be like that makes you appreciate what you have right in front of you.