Keeping the Joints Moving While on a New York City Nature Tour
Written by Seth on June 1, 2009
I was terrified. This thing was enormous and hairy and making it very apparent that it was quicker than us. I mean it was so big it should have been named. So I obliged. Gus.
On Friday night, after a long week of work (in a short week of work days), I figured I’d go for a walk around my hood with a neighbor. Nice weather, stiff joints, and a craving for frozen yogurt are the ingredients for a little stroll.
Sometimes when you have a long day sitting at a desk or in a car (or both), a nice stroll feels great. I had a chance to stretch a little bit (as much as I can stretch while in the elevator going down nine floors) and to use more muscles than those ordinarily used all day at the keyboard.
It was going great. We headed over to Park Avenue, which is where the hot shots live (ever the celebrity stalker). Until, that is, we unassumingly hopped on the New York City Nature Tour. Turns out, they’re free every spring.
First up was the rat. Rat is actually too short a word to adequately describe an animal with a tail that long. This thing jumped out of a construction site and right in front of us. “Good thing you’re wearing open toe shoes,” I quipped. But actually, I was terrified. This thing was enormous and hairy and making it very apparent that it was quicker than us. I mean it was so big it should have been named. So I obliged. Gus.
This turned the pace of the stroll up two notches, going from “leisurely” to “frenetically paced.”
Then came the cockroach two blocks later. For the record, we were on Park Avenue, lined by the nicest apartments in the world. But this cockroach was so enormous, it would have taken the weight of a Ford F-150 to crush its prehistoric shell. I think this thing was born in the 1700s, around when this all was still called New Amsterdam.
We turned the corner and headed directly home. Gross and ridiculous (but, spring is definitely here!). If there was an upside, it was that the walk’s pacing kept getting quicker and quicker.
What turned out to be a fro-yo stroll turned into a full-blown exercise walk-run. Which kind of made me chuckle at the irony that on the very Park Avenue streets which Tom Wolfe described as home to the “Masters of the Universe,” today live enlarged cockroaches and mutant rats. Go figure.