New York City’s High Line – Elevating Urban Renewal

New York City's High Line
The High Line — image courtesy of Friends of the High Line Flickr Pool

Thirty feet up.

That’s how you see the West Side of Manhattan when you walk the High Line, from its 30-foot elevation as a former freight rail line for the Meatpacking District.

It’s not necessarily better than seeing the city at street level, or from the top of the Empire State Building, or from a boat on the Hudson. It’s just different.

Which is one reason why I love the High Line so much. It offers a new way to experience New York City. Continue reading “New York City’s High Line – Elevating Urban Renewal”

Hiking the Billy Goat Trail, Just in Time

Potomac River Great Falls
The Great Falls of the Potomac River

Two days before the Federal Government shuttered, I hiked the famous Billy Goat Trail Loop A in Great Falls, Maryland, with a friend.

Consider it dumb luck before a dumb shut-down.

The craggy rock-strewn trail – inspiring its name – is located in the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park.

I hadn’t done the Billy Goat Trail in years, but the experience brought back distant feelings and experiences… Continue reading “Hiking the Billy Goat Trail, Just in Time”

4 Reasons Why Autumn is the Best Season

red leaves on tree in Autumn
Autumn can’t come soon enough for me.

As of this past Sunday, summer officially ended.

And I’m glad.

Sure, summer’s fun. Like most people, I travelled a bit, took fun trips to Block Island and New York City, and I visited my mother a few times.

But Autumn is the best season of the year.

Why? I’ll suspend my no-more-list-posts rule to give you 4 reasons. Continue reading “4 Reasons Why Autumn is the Best Season”

One World Trade Center Heralds a New Epoch

One World Trade Center in New York City
New York City’s One World Trade Center

My first glimpse in three years of Manhattan’s transformed skyline happened about a week and half before the 9/11 anniversary.

I was traveling to New York City from DC, motoring along the New Jersey Turnpike in an express bus where I had a window seat. I noticed Midtown first, but as I scanned south I saw a gleaming new behemoth that dwarfed the Empire State Building. It was One World Trade Center.

My first thought was: yes!

This colossus is the perfect architectural response to the crime of 9/11. It is muscular and massive, but also modern and elegant. I loved it immediately, and felt patriotic pride. Continue reading “One World Trade Center Heralds a New Epoch”

March on Washington 50th Anniversary – What Would Lois Say?

MLK I Have A Dream Speech
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” — MLK 8/28/63

From August 23rd to the 28th, tens of thousands of people descended on Washington, DC, to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington, made famous by Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

The nearly week-long festivities culminated on August 28th when President Barack Obama gave a speech on those same steps in front of the Great Emancipator.

Throughout it all, I kept asking myself, what would Lois say? Continue reading “March on Washington 50th Anniversary – What Would Lois Say?”

Organic Farm Odyssey

Spiral Path Farm's "Open Farm Day" featured a mini farmers market
Spiral Path Farm’s “Open Farm Day” featured a mini farmers market

Last weekend, while visiting my mom in my hometown, I joined my oldest friend, “FC,” on a visit to Spiral Path Farm for its “Open Farm Day.”

Sounds like a harmless enough excursion, right? Getting there was another story.

Spiral Path is located in western Perry County, PA, about a 45-minute drive from my mom’s house. The 255-acre farm has been a 100% certified organic operation since 1994. For the past 20 years, the farm has offered “Community Supported Agriculture” (CSA) memberships. Continue reading “Organic Farm Odyssey”

Eco-Goats Graze to Save Gravesites

Eco-goats to the rescue!
Eco-goats to the rescue!

What does an historic Washington, DC cemetery do when invasive plants threaten the trees along its perimeter?

Call in the Eco-goats, of course!

I “kid” you not. These “living lawnmowers” are based in Annapolis, Maryland, and are rented out to provide “environmentally friendly vegetation control” that is sustainable, low-impact and cost effective. Continue reading “Eco-Goats Graze to Save Gravesites”