Waking up to winter

A few of the tens of thousands of skaters on Ottawa's Rideau Canal during Winterlude. Archiive Photo of the Day: Judy Andrus Toporcer, Pierrepont NY.

A few of the tens of thousands of skaters on Ottawa’s Rideau Canal during Winterlude. (I will not be one of them.) Archive Photo of the Day: Judy Andrus Toporcer, Pierrepont NY.

Once the groundhog has confirmed that alas, spring is not in fact just around the corner, it’s a wake-up call for those of us who tend to slide further and further down the couch as winter drags on, gathering moss in the flickering light of the TV and emptying the chip bowl. “Up, Simba! Time to get the hell out of Dodge!” – to mix antique pop culture references.

Once that notion penetrates the mind, there’s plenty to do, because the like-minded have arranged for there to be destinations outside one’s home to do – well – things and stuff.

I’m headed up to Ottawa today for a little Winterluding myself, so I’ll be brief. Aside from wandering about shopping venues waving a card backed by the strong American dollar, there’s skating on the canal (which in my case is a spectator sport) and a zipline (not today, thank you). But I do like me a good snow sculpture, the Winter JazzFest is happening, and there is still some art left in the museums. Also, I could eat for America on the restaurant relay team.

If your papers are not in order, you might consider Saranac Lake instead, where Winter Carnival is wrapping up this weekend with a parade, fireworks, an ice-fishing musical comedy and all the usual hoopla around the village. Or the Orchestra of Northern New York is out and about, performing Baroque works in Watertown and Potsdam.

So yeah—lots to do. The Netflix queue and the Facebook rants will still be there, I trust, when I pull back into the drive.


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