Seeking “normalcy” in Lake George

Where are they?

lake georgeWhen my wife suggested we trek to Lake George Saturday morning, I asked why. She was looking for a sense of “normalcy.” We hadn’t gone anywhere in the last seven months, save for her fortnightly treks to visit her mother 80 minutes away. Our daughter had gone there a handful of times; I went twice.

After lunch, the three of us plus my daughter’s friend Tee set off on the hour-long journey up I-87, the Northway. We saw an automotive parade for TRUMP 2020 on I-90, not that far from our house, which we became inadvertently a part of. Apparently, there was a rally at some abandoned mall before or after our observation. This took place while the incumbent was at Walter Reed Hospital.

Lake George is a lovely place I’ve been going to for much of my life, even before I moved to Albany in 1979. It is charming and not overly “touristy.” I attended at least a couple of conferences there. While my daughter and Tee hung out by the water, my wife and I went walking. It was disconcerting.

I’ll exclude those people not wearing masks because they were eating or smoking cigarettes or alone on one of the large boats or under the age of five. I daresay that the number of people wearing a mask while they were around people outnumbered the maskless by only about 3 to 2. Tee and my daughter never took off their masks from the time wey left the car until we returned, so uncomfortable they were with the other tourists’ masklessness.


And it was crowded because it was a nice early autumn day, despite bouts of quick rainstorms. EVERYONE needed to get out of Dodge, it seemed, and they picked Lake George as their respite. My wife and I got away from the people for a brief time and saw a nifty partial rainbow across the lake. It was so interesting – short but wide – that a couple people stopped their cars in the middle of a traffic circle to jump out and take some photos.

It was a nice time, but less so because of other people’s behavior. “Normalcy” is difficult to come by when I see headlines such as this in the Boston Globe: “If he believes he doesn’t need a mask, good for him.” It’s because, after all the deaths and illnesses, some folks “still aren’t sure about masks.” And that made me feel unsafe, especially this past weekend.

It’ll be a while before I’ll be willing to venture from my cave again. I’m the very definition of underlying conditions. I do understand the Weekly Sift guy’s sense of Schadenfreude, even as IMPOTUS says he’s finally “learned so much.” I’m trying NOT to feel that way, I really am…

A room with a view

“But you do see that bloc of rooms?” I asked.

Our program had its annual conference in lovely Lake George, NY, about an hour north of Albany, in mid-May.
Lake George
The deadline to register with the office that was coordinating the conference was April 10. We were told we could spend an extra day or two at the conference hotel at the cheaper conference rate. However, while our folks coordinating the event had secured a bloc of rooms, they were not going to send up the list of names until April 24.

I wanted to take advantage of The Wife and me going up a day early, the Sunday of the conference being our wedding anniversary. But the person I first called, right around April 10 didn’t think it was possible, though she sent me to someone else, who gave me over to a third party who was to call me back but did not.

A week later, I called again, this time speaking to a young woman who had been working there only six days. She too noted that the bloc of rooms was secured but that my specific name wasn’t in the system yet.

“But you do see that bloc of rooms?” I asked.

“Oh, absolutely.”

“And are you likely to sell out for the night before the conference?”

“It certainly seems so.”

So she said she called me back, and, ten minutes later, she did. I had a room for the one night and a note in the system that I had three more nights in this mystery bloc.

Then she wanted to know if I wanted – and I forget the terms – but let’s say regular or premium. I asked what the difference was. The regular was in the two-story building adjacent, and the premium was the main four-story structure, which had a view of Lake George.

“What is the difference in price?”


“I’ll take a room with a view!”

And on our trip, after The Wife dropped off The Daughter with The Uncle, The Aunt and The Twin Cousins, we got to the hotel. It was for four nights in the same room – so I didn’t have to move – and it was indeed a room with a view, a spectacular one that I enjoyed every morning.

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