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NYC Hiking

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My wife and I set out to New York City today to check out a free Persian concert she wanted to see at the very north end of Central Park, the Dana discovery center. As I had mentioned in my previous blogs, I am not fond of Persian music nor am I a big fan of big cities, but she is a lot more cultured than I am and I just couldn't deny her the experience. Besides there was the promise of Persian food for lunch, and there is no way I'd pass up on that.

One of the best ways to experience the city is by walking it. Of course, I don't just walk, I hike, and that is another incentive for me to visit the city. We live about 80 minutes north of Manhattan. Parking on the side of the street on Sundays is no problem, so we parked at the corner of 10th avenue and 56th street and began the journey on foot.

First order of the business was lunch, so we walked to 5th avenue and 30th street to the restaurant and had a nice Persian meal. Then we started the hike to the upper west corner of Central Park, 5th avenue and 110th street. It was a warm and humid day and once we got to the park, we decided to walk uptown through the park. Central Park is a nice reprieve from the noise and commotion of the city, but walking the whole length of the park is not for the faint-hearted. Sweaty and weary, we finally made it to the concert an hour late and spent the next hour listening to a variety of Persian music. It was a decent show, and I even liked a couple of the performances.

At the end of the show, my wife suggested that we take a cab back to the car, but considering my preference to walk I hatched a plan to get in as much hiking as possible. So I suggested for us to find some water first before hailing a cab. Our search for water took us about 30 or so blocks downtown, and by the time we reached a street vendor to purchase bottled water, we decided to walk the rest of the way back.

When we finally reached the car, we calculated that we had walked 170 blocks. I'm not sure how many miles 170 blocks spans, but I venture to say that it was decent hike. My wife had the blisters to prove it and my hat's off to her for her tenacity. Recently a study was published claiming urbanites live healthier lives than their rural neighbors. I had some doubt about this study, but after observing so many people walking, running, roller-blading, biking, and generally being active in city, it is no wonder you don't run into too many over-weight people. They may not walk 170 blocks every day, but burning lots of calories is a reality of life in a big city.

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