Not Cease from Exploration

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Vermontesque #1 - Whiter Than Sour Cream

Greetings from Vermont, which, I am told, is actually one of the least diverse states in the Union.  So far I've seen little evidence to refute that idea.

At the moment I'm sitting in a Courtyard by Marriott hotel room, waiting for the day's events to begin.  Those events include a maritime museum and bike riding along Lake Champlain.  Getting here yesterday was on the long side...something like six hours of highway and country road driving...but that's the cost of admission whenever you want to go some place and you have the attention span of a gnat.

Speaking of yesterday, it was another day for me of feeling exhausted.  This at least partially relates back to my case of "Chicken Pops, Part Deux", with the added self-inflicted wound of my having stayed up very late the night before working on something.  Late, as in 1:30 am.  Not sure if that was worth the effort, but we shall see.  Anyway, I know I wasn't the greatest of company, but fortunately, Ms. Rivers is understanding (in addition to being smart and beautiful).

* * * * * *

Fast forward to 9:30 pm, and it's been a busy day.  Like most Albert-Rivers vacation days, it's been pretty busy.  Among other things, we logged about 15 miles of bike riding along Lake Champlain.  Dinner was some wonderful Asian bistro...whatever that actually means, other than Mongolian beef I had and the curry shrimp that Ms. River had (which apparently was pretty spicy).  One would think that by now I'd be tired, but for whatever reason, it's now "second wind" time.

Anyway, here are a few Vermont observations:

  • It really is pretty damn white here.  According to one website, Vermont is second only to West Virginia in terms of absolute white-ness.  I can understand the West Virginia part by the way.
  • People look pretty healthy in these parts.  Seriously, pretty healthy, as in the average NEPA resident looks like a slug in comparison.  And we're definitely not talking about a place where, by the way, folks engage in running all year round.  With over 70 inches of snow in the Burlington area, I would think that the outdoors kind of shut down for several months at a time.
  • You don't see a ton of out-of-state license plates around, which is understandable, given the fact that it's not the easiest state in the union to get to via car.
  • Biking is a big deal in Burlington.  Many of the roads have a dedicated bike lane.
(Defacing public property, Vermont style)

If it weren't for the 10-degree average low in January and the previously mentioned 70+ inches of snow this might a great place to retire.

As for tomorrow, well we have some wandering around time planned in Burlington, the Ben and Jerry's ice cream tour, and a twilight cruise on Lake Champlain.  A splendid time is guaranteed for all.

Ten years ago I couldn't have imagined being where I am now, namely thinking back over a day of detachment and relaxation in Vermont.  I suspect there's a larger lesson in that last statement, some ground that I've already covered here before:  Each of us, all of us, have a shot at redemption.




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