Sunday, October 08, 2006

The First Week of Mary Ann's Excellent Adventure

Whew! We finally arrived in the Hudson River. I don’t mean to sound as if the first week was grueling, because it was not. I say that because the last day on the canal required some diligence as we navigated 9 locks (5 right at the very end taking 1.5 hours) and to make sure we turned right at Waterford, NY into the Hudson which was very wide and contained many very old bridges. The Erie Canal was simply beautiful. It was all I envisioned it to be. The trees were brilliant on the hillsides. I never took a trip to New England in the fall, but now I can say I went across the state of New York via the Erie Canal to see the lovely fall colors. The few times I walked into a nearby town, I felt like Sissy Spacek’s character in “Tuck Everlasting” because in our boat the pace is so much slower and I wasn’t exactly dressed to impress. The canal is ripe with fascinating American history. We read a great book as we traveled through the many towns and locks, 34 in all, allowing us to drop about 600 feet since leaving Tonawanda, NY.

All my lady friends are probably wondering how I’ve been feeding my family. How does Potato Frittata sound with glazed carrots made with all fresh ingredients? Or chicken stew and corn bread made with fresh ingredients except the canned Brinkman’s chicken and Green Giant canned peas? Thanks to Roberta we enjoyed bow-tie pasta and marinara sauce. Breakfasts have included cream of wheat, eggs and pancakes and homemade granola so far. Sam really loves pancakes. Lunches have been egg salad, tuna melts, soups and lunch meat.

Today we walked up the hill right behind the marina to attend mass at Sacred Heart Church, Fr. Thomas Krupa presiding. They had a wonderful choir. I’ve made a promise to introduce ourselves to every priest and say a family rosary for him and his intentions.

We are spending our second night at Castelton Boat Club. Last night we heard coyotes howling, just like on TV! Now I know we have coyotes in NWOhio but I have never heard coyotes howl except on trips out west. Who would have suspected 110 miles north of NYC we would hear their eerie cries? Our mast went up this afternoon along with most of the rigging. It is good to see our Peregrine as I first got to know her this summer, although I was getting used to walking on deck around the supine mast supported by wooden cradles. The sunset tonight was lovely.

I have thought of my mom so often this past week. When I went to buy a postcard at Niagara Falls, she was the first person I went to pick a card out for. She would have loved to hear all about our adventure. And I have thought of all of you, too. All my colleagues at Hospice of Northwest Ohio: I think of you daily. Julian- I saw a restaurant called “Julian’s”. Sandy- I saw a woman who looked just like you! All my Regnum Christi sisters: I have been keeping up with my new prayer commitments (well, mostly). Barb- thank you for the book, “My Daily Catholic Bible”.

I hope to write again in a week...Mary Ann