New York City is a bit of a vortex that can be hard to escape. When the city offers everything in such fine-tuned abundance, why leave the city at all?
Because, obviously, it doesn’t offer everything. Space, peace, quiet, these are tough and expensive to find in the city, but those are the obvious things. The broader reason to escape is because the city is a bubble. Bubbles are wonderful places when your world is completely, safely, unendingly ensconsed by the bubble. But lives, like bubbles, burst from time to time, in small and large ways. Bubbles aren’t great places to draw broader perspectives. Bubbles aren’t good places to draw deeper meanings. Bubbles aren’t good places for staying in touch with yourself, for understanding the past, for seeing the future.
But luckily NYC has an abundance of escapes just short trips away. There’s a world of green outside the city. From the rolling hills of the Hudson River Valley, to the mountains of the Berkshires and the Catskills, it’s all just a couple hours away. Hiking, climbing, boating, exploring the outdoors, berry picking, horseback riding, relaxing in hammocks, it’s all possible. Did you know you could take a train to a day hike on the Appalachian Trail?
And it’s not just the country: the beaches of Long Beach, Robert Moses State Park, and others out on Long Island make great day trips. Shelter Island, The North Fork, Greenport are great weekend escapes. The New Jersey beaches are just short ferry rides away.
And if you want to go further afield, southern Vermont, the Adirondacks, and Cape Cod are all within a weekend’s reach.
None of these are secrets, of course. Everything can be found with a simple Google search. But it takes the time away to see them, experience them, and remind yourself that there are worlds and lives outside the bubble. Have fun escaping.