Monday, November 7, 2011

Ovid and Ithaca - good friends, wine, and hiking (Part 2 of our latest East coast vacation)

Welcome to Part 2 of our recent vacation. You can catch up on the first part here.

After spending the day hiking in Warren we made our way east and slightly north to the small town of Ovid, NY. It's sandwiched between Seneca Lake and Cayuga Lake, two of the five Finger Lakes. When I was very little (ages 1-4) I used to live in Ovid while my dad was minister at the Ovid Federated Church. Jason and I thought it would be neat to see where I used to live (and if it looked like I remembered it to look). This area also has a lot of wineries and B&Bs so it was a neat place to just relax (don't worry, there is proof below of me actually doing that since the capability of me relaxing is in question...).

My mom has stayed in light communication with some of the people we used to know when we lived there and we were able to connect with them while we were in town. We spent Monday at Priscilla's house and on Tuesday she took us to some of the places I used to know. We even got to tour my old house!

Here is the Ovid Federated Church:

Ovid is a completely different world from Houston. Priscilla didn't even know where her house key was located and she leaves her car keys in the ignition in the driveway. Ah, small town life! The first thing we did when we moved into our home was to install an alarm system and even THAT didn't prevent it from being broken into! I cannot imagine leaving my house unlocked much less leave the keys in my car! Jason and I could see ourselves retiring in some place like that though - it was so peaceful and quiet and beautiful!!

Side story - Jason and I planned to go to Niagara Falls on this trip and realized when we landed in NY that we left one crucial thing that we needed in order to visit the Canadian side (which is SIGNIFICANTLY better than the American side)... our passports. Fortunately, some good friends of ours were watching the house while we were gone and were able to mail our passports to us in Ovid. We weren't sure if they needed to be signed for when they were to arrive on Wednesday and Priscilla and Phil were both going to be at work. Priscilla said the UPS guy usually comes around 11:00 am and that if they weren't home to get it, then he would take it to Phil at the auto parts store. Man, you have to love small town life! Sure enough, Wednesday around 11:15 Phil called us and told us the passports made it! Hooray for our friends Robert and Kristin!)

Tuesday afternoon we met some other friends, Carol and Peter, from long ago for lunch and got a chance to hear all about their mission work in Haiti. It was so neat to see how this retired couple has dedicated so much time and energy into a great cause and it was neat to just visit with them!

After our lunch we headed to our quaint B&B right on Cayuga Lake and sipped a bottle of wine on a bench overlooking the water. It was probably my favorite part of the trip! We just sat there enjoying the quiet atmosphere, beautiful surroundings, and each other's company (and here is the documented proof that I do indeed know how to relax!!)

Wednesday we drove along the Caygua Lake visiting winery after winery and slowly making our way south to Ithaca.

We stopped and spent time hiking around the Taughannock Falls, 33' taller than Niagara Falls making it one of the largest single-drop waterfalls east of the Rocky Mountains.

We walked around Ithaca's common area and had a AMAZING dinner at a tapas restaurant called Just a Taste. The next morning we got up and went hiking at Buttermilk Falls. It was gorgeous weather and beautiful scenery!

Afterwards we headed to Lucifer Falls and hiked there. It was also gorgeous!

Then we headed north back through Ovid up to Rochester, NY and stopped quickly at the George Eastman (Kodak Museum) house. Fortunately Thursday was their late night so they were open until 8:00 pm and we got a personal tour of the house since the museum was empty! Then we continued north and made our way to Niagara Falls!

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