A Few Doses of Nature

Over the weekend we took a long drive north to visit Woodford State Park in Vermont as a halfway point to meet up with some of my family who lives still further up north.

I don’t love the drive to Vermont–the twists and turns make me carsick–but it’s a pretty drive, at least, and it’s always nice to get out of the house these days. Vermont is one of very few states that’s not on the quarantine list, and I half-wondered if they’d see our New York plates and try to turn us away. But no, it was fine. At this park, there’s car camping, a hiking loop, and a very small beach area on a lake. It was honestly a bit busier than I liked, but we scored a great spot by the water that was upwind of everyone else, so that helped.

We brought along a picnic lunch and our inflatable kayaks and made a day of it. I got a fairly massive sunburn where I didn’t push sunscreen deep enough into my hairline. J took a little hike on her own that I thought was going to be a quick preview-the-trails-and-report-back, but instead she walked the entire loop around the lake. So Cute W and I tried to act relaxed and casual as we chatted with family, and experienced some low-level fretting. Shortly after I began to panic and we split up to see if we could find her with a twisted ankle in the woods, J turned up back at our picnic spot.

The girls enjoyed kayaking together and enjoyed “landing” on some sort of rock pile in the middle of the lake.

We haven’t had nearly enough hike-and-nature days this spring and summer, mostly because Cute W and I are busy during the week and we want to avoid weekend crowds. So it was an excellent change of pace to get out, and of course it made me realize we should try for more outings.

Here’s the girls’ cute dog-cousin. He prefers to be with his pack at all times, but when we were standing around in chest-deep water chit-chatting, the doggy-paddling got to be too much for him. The kayak was a perfect solution.

Closer to home, I biked over to the gazebo at the Niskayuna Town Hall last night to see the Doc Benson Band. In the summertime, there are usually tons of free concerts in the park, and most venues are skipping it entirely. This makes sense for a spot like Jumpin’ Jacks at Scotia, because those were full-on crowds. Niskayuna’s concerts have never been huge, anyway, so even with an excellent turn-out, we were all able to give each other space. It felt lovely and normal to go out, even as we all strapped our masks back on when we got up to leave.


  1. Claire

    The nice weather and opportunities for socially distanced outdoor activities definitely make things more tolerable. I’m trying to enjoy it while I can, because once it gets cold it’s going to be harder to interact with people.

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