Thursday, July 10, 2008

Sagamore Hill

Monday, July 7---Sagamore Hill---Teddy Roosevelt’s home…the first Summer White House! Another treat was in store for us today….we rode the Long Island Rail Road out to Oyster Bay!! We had a brisk 14 block walk with tons of people on the sidewalk—selling everything…After much discussion with the train people, we decided that Oyster Bay stop would be the best stop for us…glad we didn’t listen to the first ticket agent…we would still be walking! LOL…It was a long ride out to Oyster Bay…over an hour…much different than the other subway rides we had taken to this point…also, at times the train really seemed to creep along…finally we made it to Oyster Bay….again unlike the other places we had been, this place was not well marked, so after some directions from the guys who worked for the train, we found the town hall---that was about 3 blocks—the nice security guard told us Sagamore Hill was about a mile or mile and ½ down the road…very helpful and friendly…he said that there was a taxi service we could use or we could walk…well, since we’re so great at walking after our days in DC and NYC we thought…”what’s a mile and a half” -- maybe we will get a taxi on the way back…Oyster Bay is a wonderfully preserved town of historic homes and businesses…a pleasant surprise waited about 8 blocks into our walk…the Oyster Bay Public Library…so we decided to stop—thinking that the home wouldn’t be much further---they have a great collection of Teddy Roosevelt articles in the TR room, and we were even allowed upstairs to view the TR book collection…what a great treat…thank you very much! We didn’t stay long because our goal was Sagamore Hill—this is where Teddy went after the “Parade” of 1910 was over….his home….Well, let me tell you that Sagamore Hill is not 1 and ½ miles from the town hall….it is about 4 miles….we were hot and sweaty, not to mention stinky and kind of (really) cranky, when we arrived! But our spirits were soon lifted by the staff of Sagamore Hill—first Thomas, in the gift shop, arranged our tour, and when we told him why we were so interested in getting to Sagamore Hill, and the drama of getting there (he is the one who said it was really 4 miles), he said he thought that the curator of the museum would like to talk to us---so we were off to see Amy—she was thrilled to hear the story of Bud and Temple! And we were thrilled because someone from the east new and believed the story of the wolf hunt! Amy gave us water and even volunteered to drive us into town so that we wouldn’t have to walk the four miles again! How sweet…we so appreciate your time and willingness to talk to us. Thank you for letting us interrupt your day! Richard gave us the tour of the home—what a splendid job you did of entertaining and informing us during the tour…We will be taking you up on your offer of receiving items for classroom use! Mr. and Mrs. John Reilly from Connecticut heard our story about our “hike” and volunteered to let us share their cab back into town! (Actually it ended up being their treat!) Thank you so much…I enjoyed meeting both of you and hearing stories about your teaching experiences, Mrs. Reilly…I hope that you enjoy your sailing and have a safe journey to Block Island later this summer…maybe you will run into Gordon!
It was hard to believe that our time in NYC was over….a final train ride..a quick bite to eat….a 14 block walk to the hotel to pick up the luggage….an 8 block walk to the bus station (and one last trip to the souvenir shop) and a four hour bus ride….and we were back in DC….then a 4 (giant) block walk to the Union Station to get the car….and more map reading to navigate DC and out of the city…. Not bad for one day!!!

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