Saturday, July 16, 2011

Great Camp Sagamore

Main Lodge at Great Camp Sagamore
I had a great week with a young relative at Great Camp Sagamore near Raquette Lake in New York's Adirondack Mountains.  We canoed, hiked, studied nature, did craft projects, ate, swam, played, danced, sang, petted owls, and had a wonderful time.  This was the Great Camp of the famed Vanderbilt family, on a beautiful lakeside setting with spectacular old crafty wooden buildings. Food mighty tasty, too. Simple but toothsome. Plentiful.    

Yours truly went into "The Zone" where what one wore, how one looked hair and makeup wise had less and less importance.  Pretty soon I was using bug repellant as hair spray, and wearing an odd assortment of old funky t-shirts and shorts.  Before I left for this adventure, an  ungodly attack of sciatica laid me low, and the Dr. prescribed some steriods and a muscle relaxant.  For a couple days, I became totally whacko and inadvertently substituted melatonin for the steriods.  Kept waking up REALLY EARLY in the morning.   Seemed to leave no permanent damage.  So far, the only thing which keeps the pain in check is Tylenol.  

The women had wine in the evening with dinner.  Wonderful conversation.  Totally civilized.  Two planes overhead all week, and other than that, no noise of cars, trucks, aircraft, sirens--just the laughter and squealing of children.  Can  you imagine such a thing?  I think we all went on Burning Man Time.   The black flies and deer flies and mosquitoes were hungry and everyone got lots of bites,  taken in stride.  I forgot about sunscreen.  Bug spray (which didn't help much) became my moisturizer and my foundation.   I ate whatever I damn pleased, not piggy, not not conscientious either.  How nice it was.  Lots of walking maybe prevented  a large weight gain.  Whatever, my jeans still fit.   Had a blast doing the crafts.  They all looked like an aging hippie had done them.  What does that say?  Dunno.

I even wrote a little ghost story for "talent night."  Not very scary.  Only one incident of violence.  

So, it's good to be back.  We were in the Big Apple last night and ate at a darling French place on Madison and 92nd?   First time in years I've had soft-shelled crabs and were they ever good.  To die for.  Quite a change from the simple tasty fare of the Great Camp.  In the old days when the Vanderbilts came for the season, there were six workers for each guest, which of course included laundry, cooking, cleaning, managing the farm and the livestock.     There was even a bowling alley and a root cellar.  And LOTS of animal heads on the wall hung as trophies.  Somewhat disconcerting to some of the little kids.  I think it was the thoughtful expressions in the taxidermed eyes.

Whatever.  Whatever.  God was it great to have no radio, no TV, and no newspapers.  No cell phone coverage, and wi-fi only in a couple places.  Nice to step out of the daily orbit for a while.  Nice to decompress.  

Today we took the ferry from Orient Point, NY  to New London,  CT  instead of the trek all the way on I-95.  Ate lunch in Saratoga Springs ysterday.  Wonderful   Chicken Caesar.  Burgers on the ferry this evening.  Bought carrots, beans, corn and tomatoes at the Farm Stand in Orient Point.  Not enough time to eat at Claudio's in Northport, alas.  I do like making the scene at Claudio's.

Time to stick another load of camp clothes in the dryer.  I did not see the loon, but we saw lots of deer.

From sun-burned, bugbit, fat and happy,

Grapeshot                                                                                                                                                                                                 

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