Friday, September 4, 2009

A Place For Us

There was a great Oprah episode where they were discussing what the beauty standards were in countries all over the world. A particularly out-going woman (I apologize that I don't recall which African nation she represented) was interviewed in her home country and reported that more zaftig women were considered to be the most beautiful. Oprah began singing "A place for us...Somewhere there's a place for us..."

I had a kind of similar feeling upon arriving in Saratoga Springs, NY, earlier today. (And it was Oprah's singing that echoed through my head!) Driving around town to find my way to the racetrack I was immediately struck by the architectural variety. Incredible. Amazing Victorians (Queen Anne, Shingle...); Classical and Greek Revivals; and brick everywhere. I knew I couldn't pass up the opportunity to wander around town and enjoy the views, so instead of heading straight to the racetrack, I took a little 'Tyger Tour' and spent the day feasting on the architectural sights and wonderful old downtown. Nothing like stepping back in time a century or so, but still having Starbucks and Dunkins to provide coffee!!

It's pretty clear why visitors have been flocking here for over 100 years. Not only is a beautiful area (just south of the Adirondacks) but it's just far enough away from NY, Boston, or Montreal to be a vacation without being too far afield. The complex of the old baths and spas on the southern end of town is gorgeous. So many wonderful brick buildings--Classical Revival--and long expanses of green lawn. A wedding was being held in one of the porticos at about sunset and it looked perfect.

A late lunch at a creperie called Ravenous--which I highly recommend, by the way--was the perfect culmination to my first trip to The Spa.

I'm all set for a long day at the races tomorrow and can't wait.

More in the morning, then, time for a little dinner and a pint at The Parting Glass Pub.

Signed, Saratoga's newest fan who already is looking forward to another trip up here!!

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