Saturday, April 28, 2012

At least I got the HP Sauce

I get a ride by TheTurducken
I get a ride, a photo by TheTurducken on Flickr.
A blow-by-blow account of the attempt to circumnavigate Manhattan:
5:39 I wake up reluctantly. Sore from capoeira.
6:36 On the 1 train, thinking of the things I wish I had packed. A book. My foam roller. An enormous hot chocolate.
7:08 I get to South Ferry early, so I go inside for that hot chocolate.
7:20 Our fearless leader arrives.
7:30 Our planned departure time. There are four walkers and about twice as many cyclists.
7:38 We hit the South Ferry restrooms.
8:04 Finally, we are off!
8:09 We've only gotten as far as the terminal for the ferry to Governor's Island when the leader hollers and waves at us. We stop to wait for one more hiker.
8:39 We are a little past Chinatown. So far, we have been in the shadow of the east side highway.
8:58 Under the Williamsburg Bridge. This is the last time we see two of the hikers, who strike out ahead of us.
8:45 Trapped in a dead end; we have to cross the street. This is the first of a couple of occasions where the trail veers away from the water. I start wishing for a restroom. We don't see the fifth hiker after this; it's down to two of us.
10:16 We've passed the UN and Midtown. Almost to 59th St. Bridge.
10:21 I am delighted to find a clean public restroom with toilet paper. Thanks, municipal workers. Michelle checks a blister. I eat the world's best pb&j sandwich.
10:31 We head up a ramp by the bridge to get back along the river.
10:47 Stairs!?!
10:57 We stop by the dog park to shed a layer. We end up alternately putting on and taking off layers a lot on this trip.
11:14 100th St. A nice round number.
11:18 Under the bridge to Randall's Island.
11:33 Target. We joke about stopping and shopping. The next little bit of the trail drops off precipitously in terms of maintenance - after all, why would the government spend money where the citizens aren't rich?
11:38 We pause for a break before crossing over the highway.
11:45 Break over. Here we have to turn away from the water for a while. We head west on 120th St.
12:07 We detour to explore Marcus Garvey park. There's a random hill in the middle, with an awesome (albeit broken) tower on top.
12:30 We turn uptown onto St. Nicholas. Ho ho ho.
12:43 Sweet little old ladies try to give us creationist literature outside of St. Nicholas park.
12:51 A voice announces there is a Brooklyn bound train one station away at 138th. Whoa. We're right by a subway entrance, apparently. About a block later we stop for a restroom break at 140th, the end of the park.
1:45 I yawn. Is it naptime? We are passing under three bridges that head over to the Bronx. This is the closest I've ever been to the Bronx.
1:53 The trip leader texts to see where we are. We are at 181st. A group of cyclists passes us; one rider has a camera mounted on his helmet.
2:12 Off the river again; we turn onto 10th Ave.
2:23 We pass the 207th St. 1 station. I think, "I could get on it and be home within 20 minutes."
2:40 We reach Inwood Park, the northern tip of the island. We stop for a long break and let our toes air out.
3:11 We start up again. My right foot is trying to cramp up, it seems. Wish I'd brought Gatorade.
3:35 We cross over the Metro North tracks, down to Dyckman Fields.
3:53 We go up the stairs to the Hudson Greenway.
4:08 It's the old road stop pavilion.
4:20 Hurrah! The GW Bridge!
5:15 We stop just shy of Riverbank State Park for a pee break. My right foot is killing me. My companion is talking about bailing.
5:31 We stop at the random Fairway under the highway so I can get a Gatorade. We randomly walk by the "British Foods" aisle, and I grab a bottle of HP sauce. I've been looking all over for it. I hope drinking some Gatorade will solve my foot problems, although now my ankle and calf are starting to hurt, too.
6:00 I concede defeat. However, we are trapped in the Cherry Walk, which is south of the highway, so there's no way to get over until the underpass into Riverside Park at 104th St. I desperately have to use the restroom. You will notice this is suspiciously near my house, so you might think I made up the part about my foot as an excuse, but I swear it was coincidence. I wouldn't make up such an unbelievable story.
6:28 Home.

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