From our campground in upstate New York, we took a Garmin-selected back roads trip through the Catskills (passing through Rome and Cairo), and arrived at the home of our friends, Dave and Donna Cason, in Stone Ridge, NY. Parking the Airstream in the Casons’ driveway, we then traveled to Walpole outside of Boston for a weekend visit with Patty’s sister Denise and Mike. The highlight of the weekend was dinner at Legal Seafood next to Boston harbor followed by a “Rock and Blues Cruise” with live music from a local band, URO, that played mostly British rock from the 70’s. The music was great and it was also a great venue for people-watching—the average age was probably around 55. Patty talked to one couple in their 70’s who had seen URO perform 13 times—the oldest groupies we have ever met. The weather was perfect and the views of the Boston waterfront at night were beautiful. Here are a few photos:
On our way back to the Casons, we stopped at Walden Pond in Concord, where Ed’s hero, Henry David Thoreau, lived alone in a cabin for over two years beginning in 1845 and later wrote about his experiences in Walden. Our initial impression was not very good as we had to park in Parking Lot F because A, B, C, D, and E appeared full (this was on a Monday), and it cost $8 for parking. In Walden Thoreau summarized the costs for the materials he used to build his cabin and the total was about $28. At $8 per car, they could have paid for Thoreau’s cabin after four visitors with $4 left over.
Staying optimistic, we proceeded with all the other visitors to the pond and were generally happy to find a pretty pond surrounded by woods and hiking trails. It’s certainly no longer a place you would go to for solitude in the wilderness, but it is still a nice place to swim, kayak, or hike on a warm summer’s day. Here are some photos:
Returning to the Casons’ home in Stone Ridge, we discovered several of the many outdoor activities available in this part of New York. One of the prominent features of the area is the Shawangunk Ridge, commonly known as the Gunks, one of the best locations for rock climbing east of the Rockies. But the Gunks are only one of the many natural features we enjoyed during our visit. Here are a few photos:
All in all, week 8 of our trip was another great time with family and friends. Next week–Patty returns home and on to the Jersey Shore.