I wanted to walk across the George Washington Bridge to the Manhattan Bridge, cross the Manhattan Bridge and walk down to the Brooklyn Bridge and take this bridge back into Manhattan and up to Columbus Circle at 59th and Broadway -- 22 miles, all told.
I even awoke early (around 9 a.m.) to give myself plenty of time.
But my morning two cups of tea were followed by a third cup. And a fourth. And a fifth. And then a leisurely breakfast.
Next thing I knew, it was 2 o'clock.
I'm not very good at making plans.
Maybe I should stop making them.
Besides, on a weekend (and during the week, too) I don't like to be rushed.
My route was the usual one: Cross the GWB, hug the Hudson River trail down to 95th Street, then off the trail east to Riverside Drive and down to 75th Street. I walked across Central Park to 72nd Street, east to First Avenue, and downtown.
By the time I got to 10th Street it was about 6 p.m.
I was at a crossroads: I could continue down to my friend's restaurant in the East Village and then back up to Columbus Circle and content myself with a 12-mile walk, or I could make a bee line for Brooklyn.
I followed the bee.
I made a right turn to Third Avenue, walked down Third until it becomes the Bowery, trudged down past Houston Street to Canal, and headed over the Manhattan Bridge.
I walked to the end of the Manhattan Bridge and backtracked.
It's a good thing I didn't go for the Brooklyn Bridge, because I would never have gotten back up to the GWB by midnight, when the footpath closes on Sundays. The last thing I would've wanted would have been to find myself stranded at the GWB bus station at 178th Street, waiting, waiting, waiting into the wee hours of the morning for a bus on a holiday schedule just to cross over the bridge.
I reached the GWB with about 20 minutes to spare.
I'll dispense with the narrative now. Here's what I saw on the way:
The cable guards mounted to the uprights of this fence are hollow. It was a windy day on the river, and the wind blowing over the tops of the guards made an eerie sound, sort of like blowing across the top of a milk bottle but much more ethereal, especially with so many of them sounding at once. I felt as if I were being lured by the Sirens to the rocks below.
To be continued ...