I happened to catch a No Reservations show with Anthony Bourdain a few nights back, this one covering the Hudson River Valley. At one point in the show at a dinner party in New Paltz the host explained why he loved living in the area. His answer hit, he said something to the effect that it is much like the Napa Valley. It works, the wineries are so much smaller but the food and things grown and produced are amazing.
Next I came across a NY Times piece about how Kingston, first Capital of NY State is no longer a pass on the Thruway, due to the city having the most beautiful and historic architecture in the state. Thanks to the piece I can catch up on all the new dining options that have sprung up. With the CIA or Culinary Institute of America chefs sticking nearby after graduation the food future looks bright. I shocked my German host last trip by telling her Hudson Valley apples are even imported to Europe, she gasped.
Small towns like Saugerties and Phoenicia are consistently making the list as places to live and the Woodstock Film Festival doing fantastic. I never needed these alerts to know I live in a special place. Quaint villages, special farms, a dearth of history mixed by the mighty Hudson and the picturesque Catskill Moutains tell me I am right where I want to be. The fireplace is lit and a day of cruising farmers markets now prepared is just about ready to serve.