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Hello and welcome to my little corner again. Fall is here, and the air outside is a bit more welcoming – more inviting and less hostile than more humid days. The oppression of the city still lingers, the clouds of smoke, even if not always visible, hang around nevertheless. The toxic exhaust of an old delivery truck or the overcoming smell of subway brakes is difficult to escape for very long.

I like the city for the things a city is good for – bringing people and talent and resources together. Nature is the seed of creativity but without the collaboration and resources of a city many ideas wouldn’t see the light of day. Sometimes things go wrong, like last week’s tragedy at Navy Yard. I was in the city, across the street from the hospital being used, so there was a lot of activity and uncertainty. Two of my colleagues working at Navy Yard survived the ordeal after spending all day locked in a building. So yes, sometimes it feels really good to get away.

Saturday I went hiking in Shenandoah National Park with a small group from DC. As stated earlier, one of the perks of living in a city is that people and activities are at my fingertips, literally. I wanted a long-ish hike, like 12-15 miles. None of my friends here (no offense) are really up for this type of activity nor would they find it particularly enjoyable. A quick search on meetup.com gave me a list of hikes happening on Saturday, and I chose one with a small group of interesting people, a fun trail, and distance of 14 miles. Perfect.

It was a good day. We started at the bottom and hiked up to Skyline Drive at the top of the ridge, then circled around and came down a different trail. There were streams and some tall waterfalls, although the water was very low or non-existent this time of year. It rained all afternoon, a nice steady rain, which made me very happy. I like rain.

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Sunday was a day of rest. I did domestic duties like laundry and cleaning and a little bit of prep work for the week ahead.

Work is going very well. It’s just the right amount of busy with some new challenges. I’m looking forward to the rest of the year.

Well, I’m getting drowsy and suppose I should sign off for another week or a month. Hopefully interesting stuff happens so I’ll something to write about. Happy trails!

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