Owego, NY

We found ourselves back in Owego, NY in early August. And by ‘found’ ourselves… I might mean ‘lost’. Or something. Anyways, I woke up one morning in Owego after being there for a few days and thought to myself: “how did this happen?”

I love Owego. I grew up in this area – and every time I get to come back, I’m grateful. But this was definitely an unexpected visit – especially knowing that we’d probably spend at least a month this go round.

Luckily, our local ‘front yard’ really is lovely. We pulled into Hickories Park on a Monday early afternoon and were greeted by the campground keeper and directed to one of the last spots in the full-hook-up loop. After a few days, things loosened up in terms of campsite availability and we moved into a more private site – at a monthly rate. Big, old, green trees and rolling hills of lush grass. I do love me some New York.

We spent our Owego based time with family. It wasn’t an easy time for us – but even in this stretch of time that sometimes felt like an unending, exhausting slog through mud and shit, we found joys.

One of my favorite places to sit and drink coffee and have a glutinous, sugary breakfast lives in Owego. We spent one afternoon a week watching Dexter rampage around a soccer field with his equally awkward fellow 8 year old companions practicing a game that could loosely be considered soccer. We developed lovely running loops and we both focused on running consistently, and intentionally. We spent more time with Dexter, doing everyday things rather than ‘wow’ things. And also we took him to the Great NY State Fair, which is a real treat. I spent most evenings after work walking with my mom. I had lunch or coffee with my dad several times a week. I got to briefly reconnect with an inspiring, goofy friend from high school (it’s you, Mike). We made a trip to Rochester and were surrounded by the love of friends who take us as we are – always. We had friends offer to meet us wherever was ‘good for us’ – and fill out buckets. We popped off on the Cider Mill multiple times to stock our supply of ‘the good stuff’.

And I am so so grateful for these joys. These bright spots in overwhelming days. And also, for the comfort of home – where ever we happen to park.

While we don’t have much to report on the goings on in Owego (we’ve done a blog on that – and if you ever find yourself there – hit us up! I’d love to tell you to go to the Kitchen 😉 … and maybe a few other places) we do have something big… something amazing… something UNBELIEVABLE to report. Ok, it’s totally believable because we documented it and it’s true.

Scott makes the AT his b*tch

Scott ‘Double Check’ Baron completed his trek from Georgia to Maine on the Appalachian Trail while we were parked in Owego. He did it. All 2,192 miles of it, dag-nabbit.

You can see details of his journey, here: Scott on the AT

We drove the Jeep up to meet Scott in Maine near the end of his very long, very trying ‘walk’, mostly so that I could take embarrassing photos and shout embarrassing words of encouragement to him as he surmounted his final mountain – Katahdin.

But, before I got to make him feel like he was back in 4th grade getting a swirly again, we spent a few days with him in Bangor, Maine eating Whoopie Pies and traipsing about Acadia National Park.

After a few days of gluttony and dumb jokes, Nicky arrived to round out our crew for the final ascent. Our crew was complete for the hike up Katahdin to bask in the glory of Scott’s ginormous accomplishment. It was a beautiful day outside and we were beaming with pride for our smelly, bearded buddy.

This ‘Scott in Maine’ break provided buckets of joy into what had begun to feel like a pool of not joy. It also provided buckets of stink, because Scott smelled really bad. But in the good “I just hiked for 6 months” bad kind of way. We took some buckets of joy – not stink – back home to Dyna (in Owego) with us – although the realization that we would have to subsist on those Scott joys – and not more – for a while more was a bit disheartening. We felt that sadness on the drive (in the Jeep – not in Dyna!) back from Maine to Owego.

But, like with any ‘adventure’ we’ve had (mostly they are good, but sometimes they are downright hard) we pulled through our poopy-mud-slog-pops-of-joy month and some change, together. And I don’t want to get mushy and shit – but I am damned lucky to be doing this life shit with Jake. He makes this world a better place – and makes me braver. We celebrated being officially official in the eyes of the IRS the day before we pulled up our levelers and got the heck out of town.