25 November 2005


We couldn't wait, so we had to go look for it...

Mohawk Trail State Forest

(Nov. 20, 2005)
I’ve got a cabin for the night and am thinking I will stay two. This place is my complete fantasy of getting away from the world. There are other campers here—in close-by cabins (but not too close)—but I’m quite content. If I had only remembered to bring my books! What was I thinking? Anyway, got my fire started, the dogs are settled in, and I’m looking forward to exploring some trails in the morning. Will also check out Mass MoCA tomorrow and perhaps the Norman Rockwell Museum—how’s that for range? Had thought to go to the western Adirondacks at some point, but I might save that for another trip.

13 November 2005

SE coast: Jekyll Island, GA to the Outer Banks

[transcription of tape-recorded commentary]

“It’s Tuesday, November 8th just past noon. I am somewhere in Savannah, GA, east side of town, I think. On coastal highway route 17 in Georgia. I’m on my way from Jekyll Island in south Georgia to Cape Hatteras in North Carolina. Almost completely forgot the whole purpose of a roadtrip. Was a little uptight about my ten-hour drive between Jekyll Island and Hatteras, but then I realized I don’t have to be there any particular time. And I don’t have to do all ten hours right now. So I got off I-95 and decided to take the “journey.” And I’m on the back highway, so I find myself in Savannah, and we’ll see where this leads. I saw a sign for Skidaway Island State Park, so I think we’ll go there and let the dogs run around for a bit. Maybe I’ll eat some lunch, then we’ll keep moving and see what the road has in store. Okay, so that’s where we’re at. Later.”

“Had some bad luck finding Skidaway. Just ran into Savannah traffic everywhere, I really needed to get out of the city. Got a little lost, circled around. Anyway, made my way out, and we’ve now entered the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge. Found my way to the coastal highway route 17 north, and I just need to pull over and let the dogs run around for a while. I think we’re all feeling a bit restless. We actually haven’t gotten that far from Jekyll Island, but it’s a nice day and a beautiful drive. So, I think we’re alright.”

View more images (lots of them!)...

10 November 2005

Our "camp"

Couldn't resist... here's our campsite at the national:

First place!

Well, the national turned out to be a lot of fun! As you can see, we earned a blue ribbon in agility (Novice A, standard class). Even though our other runs didn't turn out as well, Narra did great. We certainly got noticed! To top it off, she also earned a blue ribbon in obedience on Friday (Open A). I ended up taking Buko in the ring also--felt bad that he wasn't doing anything--but we weren't as successful. He worked really well, though; we keep getting closer!

By the way, sorry for the whining, ranting previous post. All's well that ends well, I guess. We did end up "camping" at the show site, and it was fine (fun even).

Lots more to update from the last ten days, but it will have to wait a little longer... Just wanted to get this picture up for now.

02 November 2005

But Mousie...

The best laid schemes indeed... After leaving almost twenty-four hours later than planned, we thought passing up Shenandoah was going to be the worst of it. As it turns out, we arrived at the national show site only to find no "camp site" waiting for us. So, after a little searching--and help from a friend (thanks, Donna)--I write from our room at the Super 8 in Concord, NC. Could be worse, I suppose, but not at all what we planned. I'm hoping we're through with the challenges and that the actual competition will bring squeals of glee.

Not that this situation is so awful, but it does prompt me to comment on "camping." At the show, camping is really rv parking--and I think that's what people expected, if not wanted. Me, I'm new to all this, and the sight of rvs tightly packed against one another does not come close to my image of camping. It does, however, smack of the kind of regulation we see nature subjected to these days.

I'm specifically talking about the way nature is packaged and presented to us as consumers, a reality that first struck me (ironically) at Acadia. Why are we coerced into receiving and appreciating nature in one, particular way? We all follow the same worn paths--if not paved roads--and all stop to admire the same "lookouts." I don't mind paying (entrance fees, taxes, whatever) to protect our natural lands, but does our money have to pay for the regimentation with which we're allowed to enjoy these lands? I'm happy to support preservation efforts, but our national parks seem to be going the way of canned, easy entertainment. There's no longer an experience to be had, just an idea of what the experience should be.

So, no pictures today. No parks, no nature, just hotel. (And Trader Joe's sushi for dinner. Yum, now that's camping.)