We left Wednesday and drove through the Pennsylvania countryside to get to Greenwood Furnace State Park for some mountain biking and camping. The bike trails were pretty darn rocky, causing one of us to crash on a steep downhill (hint: not me) and scrape up our knee. We had two days of beautiful weather and good meals made on the camp stove. Relaxing.
From there we drove north into Horseheads, New York and were greeted by my smiling grandparents. Grandma had a Thanksgiving-style turkey dinner prepped to kick off the weekend.
Saturday we drove down to Troy, PA to visit the old farm house that was in the family for a lot of years and where my mother was born. We went to a bulk food store and I bought a giant bag of butterscotch candies. Nice. Then we stopped to see the maple syrup farm operated by my grandpa’s cousin Stewart. It was very modern, with blue tubing zigzagging all over the forest and up the side of the mountain. We toured the syrup shack with the big boiler, and then bought all the syrup we could carry (pictured below).
Sunday we piled back in the car and drove to Keuka Lake, one of the Finger Lakes, to sample some wineries and have lunch — but I had one more thing to add to the itinerary. Grandma had mentioned a really nice overlook where she thought I might want to take a picture of the lake. Well, it turns out it had been a few decades since she had been there last, and her and Grandpa kept feeding me conflicting directions on where to go. Finally I said, “We’re turning down this road”, and happened onto a decrepit old concrete platform with a good view. It might have been and old barn foundation, I don’t know. I pretended to take pictures of the lake for a few minutes, then turned and said “hey Grandpa, ya got your camera turned on?”, got down on one knee, and asked Cheri to marry me. She smiled big and said “Yes”.
G&G were touched, and there were a few watery eyes on the platform. I was really happy to be able to include them in the occasion.
Let the planning begin!