Wednesday, June 20, 2007

No, We Didn't Sing "The Happy Wanderer"

As mentioned in my previous post, I returned yesterday from an event called either Bruise Cruise ’07 (my choice) or the Rowing/Camping Trip Extravaganza 2007 (not my choice.) Whatever its title, it was a lot of fun because although I love Manhattan, it’s nice to escape to the woods where you can barbeque, camp, go swimming, hike and, the main reason we went on the trip, row boats.

On the trip was a group of about 15 people—split pretty much in half between people my age and adults—and although I only personally knew about 6 of these individuals, everyone got along quite nicely. In fact, a couple whose names are Eva and Cade, were actually at the Television concert I saw this past weekend.

On Monday morning to escape the heat, we docked our boats on a very wooded area of New Jersey. There were no buildings or aspects of civilizations within miles of us (I think the closest thing was the Seismology Marine Biology Building which, of course measures earthquakes) and we had run of a place that included a trail that weaved its way through the woods, a waterfall (which, unfortunately for one of us, had a dead deer lodged between jags of rocks…which he didn’t realize until after he drank the water that had to pass through the deer), a beach right on the Hudson and various other aspects that you don’t get in a big city.

We were on this island for quite some time because we didn’t want to be rowing when the sun was at its peak and the tide wasn’t helping us much either, so everyone went their own way and either napped, swam, sat around the waterfall or, like what I did, went for a hike. The only electronic device I had with me on the trip was my iPod, which was more for the train ride from Grand Central to Croton-Harmon than anything else. But it did come in handy during my walk. As the trail got rockier, steeper and more frustrating, it was nice having Roxy Music and Billy Bragg and even Phish playing.

Although it was only from Sunday afternoon to Tuesday afternoon that we were on the trip, it seemed a lot longer than that because we were out in the sun much of the time and rowing is a very physical activity. But never my thoughts never drifted (no semi-pun intended) to the Mets, checking my e-mail or on the classes I was missing, and I didn’t mind missing out on pretty much all forms of technology. I must say that I was happy to have my iPod or, more specifically, music with me though because television, computers and the internet are all activities you have to focus your attention on, while with music, you can listen to it while hiking up rocks or trying to a sleep on a docked boat.

Maybe that says something about my generation (or just me?) and how we’re spoiled with our accessibility when it comes to music, blah blah blah. But I just see it as I’m someone who likes to listen to music—even when walking on boulders and sliding down hills.

Five Best...Movies about Camping

#5. Deliverance (I happen to think it's a terrible movie, but I know many people whose opinion I trust that think this a great movie. At the very least, it has some catchy music and Jon Voight.)

#4. Bushwhacked

#3. Swiss Family Robinson

#2. The Blair Witch Project

#1. Stand By Me