December 30 – And here we are at the end of another year of life, dearly-precious, damnably-short life. 2022 has been a year of happiness and sadness for me, but sadness, alas, predominates. We …
December 30 – And here we are at the end of another year of life, dearly-precious, damnably-short life. 2022 has been a year of happiness and sadness for me, but sadness, alas, predominates. We human beings hate change of any kind—whether it be health status, financial status, relationship status, familial status, climate status, political status—and everywhere I look this end of year, things are in tumultuous and terrifying flux. – Difficult as it is, Friends, we must begin anew and resist, if we can, the sadness. How do we do it? Maybe we begin anew knowing that the darkest day of the year now lies behind us. From this point forward, bit by bit, the days grow longer until, here in Sullivan sometime in mid-March or early April, the crocuses and daffodils break the icy sod with their sturdy necks and twist their waxy buds toward the sun.
Like those very bulbs now stirring in the ground, we, too, can fight the darkness and do small un-heroic/ heroic things like getting up and making our beds every morning. It’s a start. And speaking of starts: the Smallwood Civic Association (SWCA), previously quiet as a chrysalis in its cocoon over the winter months, continues to rustle its waxing wings and broaden Association activities throughout the year. There was already the quietly glorious 2022 “Thanksgiving Saturday SWCA Beach Party.” Now comes this Sunday, January 1st, 2023 (weather and snowpack permitting), the 6th Annual New Year’s Day Hike and Beach Party. Our communal trek through the snowy forest will start in the Forest Reserve and lead us over Round Top, the highest prominence in the 135 acre Reserve. Hikers will proceed at a slow- to medium pace through the forest, craning our necks at titanic 400 year-old White Pines and gazing down at the twisting course of White Lake Brook in the valley below. Previous trekkers have been as young as eight years old and others as frisky as seventy-five. If you’d like to attend, please wear sturdy and waterproof (probably high-ankle) hiking shoes or boots. Bring travel mug and good mitts and scarf and hat, plus perhaps a walking stick/ poles and layerable clothing. Snow in the Reserve at this time of year can be crusty with ice; punching your foot through it and drawing your shoe up again can be a pretty good workout. Those wishing to take a shorter route can follow the marked trails and return earlier to—what else?—another quietly understated but simply magnificent beach fire at the SWCA Fire Pit on the SWCA Beach! Please consider contributing some hearty food, beverages of choice, and a chair or two to help seat everyone around the blazing bonfire. You can attend both Hike and Party, or one or the other. No doubt about it: this will be THE PLACE TO BE this New Year’s to raise a glass to the 2023 in Smallwood, New York!
• When: 11:00am, Sunday, January 1st, 2023
• Meet Where: Bethel Dog Run parking lot, Smallwood
• Beach Fire Pit: 1:30 - 4:30pm.
• For ‘Day-of’ decisions regarding weather/start time: consult SWCA FB Page or sign in to SWCA Website after 10:00am on January 1st.
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