Day 102

Norrie State Park, NY to Cornwall on Hudson, NY
$54 :: BF, ice cream, motel room
42.00 mi :: 4.10 hr :: 31.7 mph :: 10.0 mph :: 6730 mi

It’s fun riding off the mansion grounds, casual and unobserved at quarter to seven. On the way to Poughkeepsie I peek at the Vanderbuilt and F.D. Roosevelt mansions and their posh, expansive grounds.

In Poughkeepsie I settle in at a diner that reminds me of the Modern Grill I used to frequent in Chicago. The cook asks a bunch of questions and makes me a big breakfast just the way I like it: a nice chewy, cheesy omelet with a heap of light brown fried potatoes and wheat toast.

I spend a long time at the library, where I can monopolize a computer for a while. I also spend some time looking up references and words from Moby Dick. I could spend hours more, but I cross the Hudson and eat lunch. On Rowland’s advice I head south towards Westpoint. There are some jaw-clenching construction sections.

At an ice cream stand in Newburgh, I talk to Larry, born and raised in the Catskills. He’s a stout, strong looking guy with big beefy hands and dirty fingernails. He wears half of a broken coin that says “Best Friends” around his neck. He’s upset that the Catskills are getting too crowded, and asks me what places I’ve seen that I’d be interested in living. From several comments he makes I surmise that I’m talking to a white supremecist. He brags about his blonde daughter. He mentions that he’s noticed there are fewer “of us” these days. When I fail to respond enthusiastically, he seems to drop it.

I fail to find a place to camp in Cornwall, and get a motel room. Somehow it’s cold comfort, bringing out the things I’d like to get rid of in my trip. I smoke, I watch TV. Ironically, a Simpson’s comes on where Sideshow Bob is being tortured by TV. It’s very effective in portraying how I feel. In the end, I hope the experience will help motivate me to purify my journey.

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