The tickets are now booked for our trip to India over the holidays. Our friend Sourav is getting married in Calcutta on January 2nd, so it made a very good reason to make the trek over there. We’ll be spending a good chunk of time in Chennai when we first get there, as Susan has a bunch of friends / connections there, then up to Calcutta for a few days of the wedding, and then back home.
This is how I spent my anniversary, with my wife Susan on the Otter Creek in Vermont. A nice 4.5 hour kayak trip, totally 9.5 miles. We stopped about half way through for a picnic lunch which included the last of our wedding cake (lemon cheesecake with white chocolate frosting). And it was still mighty tasty!
Yesterday Susan, Mike, Matt, Pyg, and I decided it would be a good day for a bike ride. Susan is just getting used to a bike with gears, so heading out to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail seemed like the thing to do.
It’s about a 40 minute drive from our house to Amenia, one of the main park and ride points for the rail trail. From Amenia you can ride 8 miles north, to Millerton, or 2.5 miles south, to the start of the trail. Along the way you ride past farms, streams, a swamp or two, and lamas. It took us just under an hour to get to Millerton, where the rail trail currently ends, awaiting completion of section 4 of the trail (sometime in 2008), which will add another 8 miles, and connect in the already completed section 5, which is 4 miles on it’s own. The ride back is slightly down hill, which meant we were flying along at 15 mph most of the way. 16 miles in 1:45 isn’t bad for a Sunday afternoon, especially considering everyone was riding mountain bikes.
It was the first ride out for most folks of the year, so there was the normal amount of “seat numbness”, but subsequent rides should have everyone toughened up enough that that won’t be an issue. It’s great to get out and explore a new area. I think next time we’ll probably start at the beginning of the trail, and remember our wallets, so we can get a little bite to eat in Millerton, then spin around and come home. I honestly can’t wait until the full 23 miles is opened up, as that would make a really nice full day trek.
This past weekend Susan and I did something different, and took a trip down to Philadelphia for the annual flower show. The idea first surfaced a couple of weeks ago when Susan brought up the fact that it was coming up, and she’d like to go some year. The fact that Scott, Lori, and Hannah are right around them, and we hadn’t seen them since Hannah arrived, and my aunt lives in the area as well, made it a great opportunity to see not only amazing flowers, but also friends and family.
The flower show is 11 acres of displays, and took us 8 hours to see the whole thing. While the following pictures don’t do it justice at all, they’ll at least give you a flavor of what was there.
Susan and I went up to Vermont for my father’s 65th birthday this weekend, and actually got two 1.5 hr cross country skis in while we were there. During the ski I realized that while the skis I have now are quiet good for down hill and turns, their climbing ability leaves much to be desired. Susan was actually doing much better than I was on our last ski, on the older Karhu skiis that I had. Fortunately, it’s actually a pretty reasonable time of year to buy skis, given that we’re most of the way through the season, so I ordered a new part of Karhu touring skis for a reasonable price. This will give me something a bit better suited for climbing and track skiing, as well as my current skis which are better for turning and real backwoods adventures.
In addition to skiing, we had also planned to go ice skating this morning, however the balmy 6 degree weather, and 30 mph wind gusts made that not such a good idea. Maybe next time.