I am not usually the one to talk about American history. This 4th of July, however, I wanted to go for a short restful trip, and accidentally, saw that Valley Forge Park is less than two hours away from New York City. So, to the Valley Forge, we went with the dog and all. Thankfully, the Residence Inn allows dogs.
I am not going to explain what Valley Forge is, you can read all about it yourselves. However, just wanted to share a few observations:
- Never knew that George Washington was a Freemason. Thought that would be an interesting fact to share.
- Always knew how small (in physique) our collective ancestors were. However, never realized how REALLY small. When you look at the huts (tiny wooden houses) and see six or even twelve bunk beds in each, all you can think of is how did they breathe, much less were able to sleep in those tiny bunks, crawling in and out of those minuscule spaces. Even the “better” huts, clearly for officers having only two “beds” leave a lot of space to be desired.
- The most important observation, however, is the love, care, thought and nurture that is put by the society into a park like this. For someone like me, coming from thousands of years of history of my Jewish ancestry and at least a thousand years of my Russian homeland, it is always a mixture of a smile and admiration to watch the efforts of the American government to preserve the short history of this country for all. The huge expanse that the park occupies is meticulously taken care of. Grounds are manicured, all possible conveniences are there – paths, bike rentals, bathroom facilities, tours for adults and children guided by park rangers, volunteers dressed in period costumes, picnic tables everywhere, parking spots throughout the park, and – even storytellers. These ladies are all over the park at different points just waiting for you to tell you a story about the place, the general himself, or the Revolutionary War. Everything is clean, beautiful, vast and taken care of. And – free. If you have a boy of any age, you really should make the trip. You will enjoy it even if you don’t.