July 1, 2007



After spending the morning doing chores, Earl and I took a few moments to relax on our patio this afternoon. Like the well oiled machine we strive to be, we split up the “honey do” list and just got everything done. While Earl was grocery shopping, I had the task of trimming the out-of-control bushes in the landscaping across the front of the house. We planted the bushes three years ago and haven’t done much with them since. They are now tamed back to a reasonable size. I was expecting to find a buried treasure or something but all I found was cat poop.

After the landscaping was under control and the groceries were put away, we went to Lowe’s and picked up a few goodies for the house, including a bird feeder, some potting soil and geraniums from the abandoned decorative pots along the driveway. All this outdoor activity coupled with my craziness in cleaning the house on Friday has me feeling pretty good about this place we call home.

Now if the weather would just feel like July 1st instead of May 1st it’d be picture perfect.

Central New York.

Earl and I haven’t been on a fun road trip in a while. With sunny skies and moderate temperatures bestowed upon us by Mother Nature, I declared that today we would return to the tradition of going for a “long ride”. We decided to approach today’s ride a little different and explore a little closer to home.

Our first stop was the Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park in Syracuse.

Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park.

I have not been to this zoo since I was 10 years old or so. It was still called the Burnet Park Zoo at the time. Despite the 29 years that have passed, I still remembered quite a bit of the zoo. It seems to be in good shape and the animals seem happy. I’m not sure that I’m a huge fan of the whole zoo concept, however, I do appreciate that the zoo is doing their share to make sure animals that are near extinction are not killed off completely. Plus, zoos do a good job of educating the young about Mother Earth, so there are many good things about a zoo. However, if I had to sit in a cage all day I might resort to throwing my poop, so I guess I see both sides of the coin.

Overall it was a pleasant experience.

After the zoo we headed north to the Oswego County Fair. I had read that this is the 150th anniversary of the Oswego County Fair, so I thought it would be just wonderful. The fair is held in the next town over from where I grew up and it was a regular family activity to go to the county fair, so I was looking forward to the experience. When we arrived I noticed the grandstand was jammed with folks gawking at the demolition derby. I guess it’s still the biggest attraction at the fair. We decided to skip that and opted to walk through all the building, pass by all the food vendors, look at all the arts and crafts and admire the various tractors on display. After about 10 minutes or so it was time to leave as we had seen it all, so we headed out. So much for that 150 year celebration.

After a stop at Smokey Bones for a few brewskis and supper, we headed to Carousel Center for a walk before heading home. One stop at Carousel Center was at the Apple store, where I got to play with an iPhone. O.k., while I think the hype of this thing was entirely off the map I must say that the geek in me really loves this gadget and while I can think of many other things I could spend $500 on, I wouldn’t mind if I had one of these things in my pocket. So I have not added an iPhone to the geek arsenal but I would definitely say there’s one in my future, even if it’s two years from now.

There has been an effort underway for many years to transform Carousel Center into Destiny USA. If the final vision for Destiny USA is ever reached, it could be the largest man-made structure on the entire planet. Even Phase One of the plan is quite impressive, especially in the fact that it is an entirely green operation with absolutely no fossil fuels involved in it’s creation.

To me that’s just cool.

A number of years ago, when my sister was sitting in intensive care with something close to Legionnaire’s Disease, I was sitting in a hospital waiting room with my cousin Theresa. Concerned about the welfare of my sister and still reeling from the death of Theresa’s daughter, we were basically “numb” and just talking about the meaning of life. Why are we here, how can we make a difference and all that sort of deep stuff. I’ve never forgotten that conversation. It enhanced a drive I’ve always had to do my part to make the world a better place. This is where Destiny USA intrigues me in many ways. First of all, if it ever comes to fruition, it’s going to be nothing short of impressive. It is being built on an industrial wasteland that was known as “Oil City”, for all the oil storage tanks that used to live there. It lies on the shore of one of the most polluted lakes in the world, Onondaga Lake. However, Destiny USA can be a major force in turning this all around, enhancing efforts to clean up the lake and bringing jobs, visitors and prosperity to the Upstate New York “rust belt”. Many may not agree with this, but I think there’s a solid vision waiting to be realized.

Perhaps a newly educated Civil Engineer could assist in the effort.