Saturday, June 22, 2013

Change of scenary - my trip to New York

Just after I knew what the date of the Memphis To Moore fundraiser was, I booked a flight.  I knew that after two and a half intense weeks, I would want to take a break for a few days.  Yesterday morning, I headed to Upstate New York to visit my friend Anthony.

I was scheduled to fly on US Airways.  I woke up yesterday morning to two voicemails from US Airways saying that my first flight to Charlotte was cancelled and that I would miss my flight to Albany.  My first thought was that the entire day was about to become a disaster.  (My college roommate Adam used to always say that he hated to travel with me because something would always go wrong on my trips.  He joked that I had bad travel luck.) 

Fortunately, just the opposite happened.  US Airways booked me onto two Delta flights.  When I got to the Memphis airport, I approached the priority counter to ask that they add my frequent flier number to my tickets.  This was the best decision I made all day because it resulted in me being upgraded on both of my flights to Albany.  Delta is no longer serving meals in first class for the flights I was on, but they kept my wine glass full and brought me wonderful shortbread chocolate chip cookies all day. 

On my second flight, I sat next to a man who had to be in his 90s.  He was mentally very sharp and shared his entire life story with me.  He had been married twice and both of his wives died.  His first wife had breast cancer in the 70s before there was advanced technology.  They had 5 children before she died and he was left to raise them all.  In the 90s, he finally remarried to a woman who eventually developed dementia.  He was left to care for her for 7 years before she past away 2 years ago.  He not only has a lot of grandchildren, but he also has great grandchildren and was on his way to one of their high school graduations.  He lived his entire life in New York state, but recently relocated to Nashville to be near one of his children.  The thing that struck me as a bit funny was that he was very unsure about my age.  He would say things like "I'm not sure if you are old enough to remember this movie..." (and I would think to myself "I'm not as young as I look") ..."it starred Clark Gable."  But of course, I'm not that old.  Clark Gable died almost 20 years before I was born. :-)

There was also a terribly cute family on one of my flights.  The parents had four small children.  The mother obviously liked to sew because they were all wearing outfits made with the same fabric.  Here's a photo:

I made it to Albany safely and on time.  We drove through the RPI campus and past my old house in Troy where I used to live with Adam.  It looked very much the same, although different at the same time.  The school has built a new digital technology building that looks very modern compared to the rest of the landscape.  The house I lived in looks about the same too.

After our tour of Troy, we headed an hour away to Red Hook, NY where Anthony lives and maintains his Five Goats Farm.  We had a great steak dinner last night with the intern who helping out with the farm.  This morning, I got to meet the animals which included 5 goats, 2 llamas, chickens, and bees.  Here's a photo that I took of one of the goats.

As you can see, it's been a total change of scenery.  What a nice way to unplug for a few days!

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