Bicycling the Delaware Water Gap – Port Jervis to Trenton

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There are numerous ways to connect between Metro North and SEPTA service heading south to Philadelphia. New Jersey Transit and Amtrak are logical ones; riding 125 miles down the Delaware River is probably the most scenic. For a recent weekend visit to Swarthmore, I took the Old Mine Road through the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, camped in Worthington State Park, and spent the second day riding old canal towpaths in Pennsylvania and New Jersey down to Yardley on SEPTA’s West Trenton Line.

The route – Overall, scenic and very low traffic. I was a bit worried about some of the roads between Stroudsburg and Easton, PA, but they were quiet and the cars that did pass me were courteous. The unpaved canal towpaths made for slower going than I expected, especially after some rain made them a bit muddy in parts. Wildlife sightings included six deer, a family of groundhogs, four cardinals, five great blue herons, two black bears, and hordes of geese intent on blocking the canal towpaths.

The bike and gear – A heavy folding bike was easy enough to take on the bus from Boston to New York, the Metro North/New Jersey Transit train from New York to Port Jervis, the SEPTA train from Yardley to Swarthmore (and back to Philadelphia), and the Amtrak train from Philadelphia back to Boston. I brought cooking equipment and food in one small pannier, and extra clothes and supplies in another. On top of the rear rack I had a duffel bag with my sleeping bag, sleeping pad, and tent. I also had a handlebar bag for my camera, phone, directions, and snacks. At the campground, I made sure to hang all of my food in a pannier when I went to bed; a bear poked around camp in the morning, so it was a good thing I did.

Taiko at the Swarthmore Student Dance Concert

Last week I performed in Swarthmore’s Spring Student Dance Concert with a Taiko ensemble:

Fireflies

Fireflies swarmed Parrish Beach tonight.  Pictures:

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Swat Blotter: Armed Intruder

Swarthmore Public Safety

Swarthmore Public Safety

I just received the following email:

SWARTHMORE COLLEGE
Emergency Communication
An armed intruder was discovered in Wharton and has fled. No one was harmed. Police are on the scene. Watch e-mail for further details.

Bad news, especially after last month’s armed robbery.

Parrish Declared Structurally Unsound

Parrish falling into disrepair

Parrish falling into disrepair

Faculty members from the Engineering Department were called in to provide emergency consultation after part of the facade fell off of the rear of Parrish this morning.  They apparently found massive structural defects and believe collapse is imminent.  Non-essential personnel who work in Parrish’s Center Wing were evacuated this afternoon.

Hailstorm

Dark clouds behind church

Dark clouds behind church

I got caught in yesterday’s crazy hailstorm.  Walking back from church, the sky changed from blue to black in about a minute, and I started getting pelted by dime-sized hail.  At least the rain only lasted three minutes and we didn’t get any of the golf ball-sized hail that Media got – quite the squall.

Pile of hail (pencil for scale)

Pile of hail (pencil for scale)

Carpet Shampooing

Students prepare for a night spent cleaning as part of Learning 4 Life’s Take Your Partner to Work Day (Photo Courtesy of Andrew Cheng, Phoenix Staff)

Students prepare for a night spent cleaning as part of Learning 4 Life’s Take Your Partner to Work Day (Photo Courtesy of Andrew Cheng, Phoenix Staff)

Starting at midnight Tuesday, I joined some other students in working part of a shift with Swarthmore’s Environmental Services staff cleaning Parrish.  I had quite a bit of fun with a carpet shampooing machine.

My Room

I moved into my room at Swarthmore on August 24th.  I am living in a spacious single in Dana (campus map).  The vast majority of my stuff is now organized in my room (after being unpacked from my luggage, in storage across campus, shipped, etc.)  Even with all of my clothes, books, boxes, luggage, electronics, and other junk, I have plenty of room.  Pictures:

Window bench
Window bench
Green view
Green view
Desk
Desk
Bed
Bed
Dana
Dana