Monday, October 13, 2008

Trip to Hyde Park, NY

After completing a monstrous freelance project, and needing some respite from all the bad financial news, I packed a bag on Thursday and whisked Jae off for a spontaneous short vacation.

I was craving broad vistas and fresh air, and felt a pull toward the Hudson Valley. And with all the comparisons to the Great Depression buzzing around (which with today's market re-bound seem irrelevant, but we'll see) I thought a pilgrimage to the home and presidential library of Franklin Delano Roosevelt would perhaps bring some inspiration and insight.

So we headed for Hyde Park, NY, where we visited historic sites, ate great food at Twist and the Culinary Institute of America, and stayed in a quiet, clean little motel for next to nothing. (Read my Yelp reviews of Twist and the Roosevelt Inn.)

It was lovely, refreshing, and only about 2 hours from Brooklyn. If you're needing a dose of fresh air and fall foliage, I recommend it!

Image at top right: entrance to FDR's house.

Down the driveway to FDR's house, Springwood.

The FDR Library had a great exhibition about Roosevelt's first 100 days, during which time he launched his many New Deal programs and overturned prohibition. Here are a couple snippets of the wall text -- indeed!

The FDR Presidential Library also houses a collection of items related to his (arguably more interesting) wife, Eleanor Roosevelt. An avid knitter, this is her knitting bag -- she was working on a little blue sweater when she passed away. Next time, I'm going to visit her house too.

The very inspiring full quote reads:
"Courage is more exhilarating than fear and in the long run it is easier. We do not have to become heroes overnight."

In the stables, I noticed the auspicious name of one of the Roosevelt horses.

We also visited the Vanderbilt Mansion up the street. This is the back portico. This is all that would fit into my camera frame from where I sat on the grass overlooking...

... this view of the Hudson Valley. Heaven!

We returned Friday night, but took Saturday off too, relaxing in the park and watching movies. Yesterday was Week 2 of the Fall Furniture Festival at the Brooklyn Flea, and I'll be reporting on that soon. Vacation is great, and now it's back to work!

Posted and images by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

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