Last weekend my better half and I went to the foothills of the Appalachians, the Laural highlands just Southeast of the City that Steel built, to celebrate eight years of wedded bliss. It was magnificent for many reasons, the least of which not being the quiet.
While there I was able to get a morning run in on Saturday. It was gloriously overcast and, while humid, cooler by a good stretch than out here in the ‘burgh. Indeed, the general Donegal area (while experiencing remarkable localized weather) is usually around 10 degrees cooler than it’s neighboring Western metropolis. The thing is…I was running in the mountains. I experience this a bit in the Middle-Of-Nowhere Green County excursion I wrote about earlier. The run was solid. I did about 27 minutes. The inclines were crazy.
On thing I noted was that “recycle bin” is a synonym for “side of the road” out there. There were SO many cans I was astounded. I realize that in many parts of outer Westmoreland and Somerset Counties Drinking and Driving (or at the very least driving sober with a car-load of drunks) is FAR more common than anyone would ike to admit, but seriously…collect your empties, people! I don’t know if this situation stems from the locals or the vacationing public, but I was actually surprised by the amount. And the fact that there was little other trash made it that much more noteworthy.
In other weekend news, I read Bill Bryson’s newest offering The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid. I’m a big fan of Bryson, but this book surpassed my expectations by leaps and bounds. It’s a memoir of his life growing up in Des Moines, Iowa in the 1950s. It sounded dreadful to read, but it is hilarious. Highly recommended. Indeed, my Missus was reading Bryson’s In A Sunburned Country at the same time and our laughing out loud led to a lot of reading out loud to each other. I know. How Jane Austin of us. Go read Bryson.