The Empire State

When I think of New York, I think of the city. As I’m sure most do. But these last two weeks have proven that, although NYC is the most populated city in the country, the state itself is so much more than a 302.6 mi² stretch of land.

Being from the Boston area, it’s pretty well-known that the two cities are rivals. This would never stop me from going somewhere new, but I’ll argue it to the day I die that Boston is the greatest city of all time. But, whether a New Yorker or a Bostonian, I think we can all agree there are a lot of similarities, from the way we argue about sports to the way we come together when our cities are hurting.

Unfortunately, my first memory of both cities is a bad one. From running away in Boston after my step-dad proposed to my mom, to seeing a naked woman running down the streets of New York with a hot dog in her hand, it was an eventful year as an 8-year-old.

Since then, I’ve been to NYC a handful of times and each time, I left feeling anxious and dirty. Nothing against NYC, it’s just cities in general — they make me feel claustrophobic with the mass amounts of people and towering buildings. I think it would be easier to get lost in the concrete jungles than the real ones. And I find myself being more afraid of dark alleyways and drunk men than lions and tigers.

They say not to judge a book by it’s cover, but when the state’s nickname drives you to the city, it’s hard not to lose the surrounding regions in the background.

It’s always been stars and serenity that calm my mind and fuel my soul and upstate New York has provided just that. Taking a step back from the iconic city life, the stars are clearer, the air is crisper, the people are quieter and silence is appreciated.

The Finger Lakes is a region of New York that is comprised of 11 small lakes that extend from North to South between Rochester and Syracuse. The area is known for it’s wine production, numerous state parks/waterfalls and fresh-water fishing. All of which we were lucky enough to experience throughout our time here.

I’ve said it before in my earlier posts, but being surrounded by nature instead of people is a feeling I could never put into words. I could try, but Mother Nature would probably laugh at me.

If I’ve learned anything this first month on the road, it’s not what we do that will impact me the most, it’s who we meet along the way. And the people I have met thus far in New York with have a forever impact on my life.

To be continued –>


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