Upstate of Mind


With Paris as my prism, hanging out in small upstate NY towns….

Starting to get to know Kingston, briefly the first capitol of the Empire State during the American Revolution. Colonial history has left two main heartbeats, one by the Rondout waterfront:

DSC02255with galeries, shops and eateries, a maritime museum and cruises out on the wide Hudson. Then there’s an area on higher ground, still called the “Stockade” although the original fortress was burnt first by the Esopus tribe and then by the British after the Battle of Saratoga. Highly recommended guided tour, The Senate House, for a glimpse into 18th century daily life. Picturesque tree-lined streets framed by white arcade walkways with a butcher selling grass-fed meats, hairdressers, international and US cuisine, art supplies, antiques, clothes, gifts, The Old Dutch Church (its iron fence now festooned with rainbow flags), cornucopia farmers’ market on Saturdays and a memorable pawn shop:DSC02844

Interesting mixed messages…a Buddha, musical instruments, a book cover showing armed Native Americans, entitled Turn in Your Weapons (The Government Will Take Care of You), and a neon sign that reads, “Guns bought and sold.”

Behind the scenes on brick façades around the main drag, facing 17th century stone houses, monumental street art… Artemis Emerging From The Quarry:





A few miles away is a huge strip lined with malls, surrounded by woods and farms, the Catskills rising in the distance. Can’t quite define the vibe yet. Every activity involves car travel, fresh produce everywhere but no baguette. Is France a figment of my imagination? Supersized local yokels, Manhattan intellectuals, Woodstock hippies, some Latinos and African Americans, County Fair, farm animals and wildlife, bugs, T-storms, humidity, blue skies, big sunsets, air smells like watermelons…. summer upstate.

DSC02839Davenport Farms, roadside produce stand 🙂

to be continued  xxxxx Aliss


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