Just a bit of walking

Anyone who reads this blog knows that Ashley and I are (fanatical, obsessive) walkers, but this Saturday’s walk was long, even for us—a new record, in fact. I blame it on the City, which is getting prettier by the day. On top of that, I think we’ve finally turned a corner: the long winter that has lingered this year more than most seems to be ending. In fact, this past weekend we enjoyed weather in the 80s (and one day in the 90s!). With a certain sense of glee, I put on shorts and a Tshirt, sunscreen, and with Ashley I hit the street.
We first headed south through Alphabet city, walking down Avenue B. Every restaurant and every bar seemed to be opening their backyard gardens and patios for service, and it seemed like every other place was an option to note for our must-try list. We passed into the Lower East Side and decided to have breakfast at Little Giant’s street-side tables. Ashley had some ridiculously perfect poached eggs and maple sausage over an herbed biscuit with gravy, while I had some ridiculously sweet French toast. Each was quite good, though mine was so sweet with caramel sauce and banana ice-cream that one hardly needed any maple syrup. Given the perfection of Ashley’s savory dish, I’ll be getting eggs next time.
Warmed by the sun and some cocktails (a bloody mary for me and a dark-and-stormy for Ashley), we slowly rose from the table and walked across SoHo. We went straight out to the Hudson river, where it seemed that most of New York’s healthy population was out biking, running, roller blading, and yes, walking. We really had little
motivation to leave the water’s edge, and enjoyed finding a newly landscaped stretch, exclusively for the walkers. No help still for the stretch of the trip in the 30s: Ashley and I have discussed before that there is really no pretty way to get through the 30s in Manhattan. Even on the river there is no respite from midtown industriatlization. But save that section, the walk was beautiful.
Both of us are extremely interested in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels right now—especially me. They seem like the best type of dog for us, and while our fever for a dog may have chilled a bit from the last post, I loved looking for these dogs and imagining walking our own on days like these.
We exited the west side parkway and made our way up to Riverside park.
On the way, we stopped for some ciabatta bread, stinky cheese, fresh fruit and a bottle of rose before continuing up to the north side of the park—where we knew it would be less crowded. We entered around 108th street and found our own little patch of grass in the shade. We spread out our goods, but before long, our little shady spot was a sunny spot in the middle of simultaneous racket ball, frisbee, and football games. A quick adjustment to the other side of the path solved all our problems and after toasting to the spring, we dug in.
When finished, I pulled out our own paddles and ball, and we tried to revive some old skills. The bottle of wine did not help and, at the outset, we were able to rally back and forth a grand total of about three times. But by the end, we were able to build up to the high 30s. After out last rally, we relaxed for a few minutes longer, soaking up the atmosphere and then walked down through the park, where we spotted a hawk, and down the bridle path, where the pinkish peach trees were in full bloom.
Unfortunately, we soon had to exit the park and re-enter the madness of midtown. We made good time down Madison and, before we knew it, we were back at our place. But the call of the outdoors was too alluring. Though our hips and legs were starting to struggle a bit, we headed south down Manhattan again; our destination—Diner. We walked across the Williamsburg bridge and waited for an outside table. It took forever, but we helped the
time pass with drinks. Finally, around 10pm, a table opened up out front. Though we ordered some of the seasonal appetizers, we each couldn’t resist ordering the burger, and we shared a bottle of red wine. By this point we felt we had to skip the subway and walk home; not only did we need to walk off the wine before bed, but after an entire day of walking–how could we stop now? The spring was basically gone from our step, but we crossed back over the bridge, back toward the lights of Manhattan, and back to our place. It was late, we had our share of drinks, and we had walked almost 23 miles! We lasted about five minutes before we were both completely out.

Related posts:

Travel Guides

Browse By Category