Day in and day out, I hear people complaining; about how far stores are, how the schools are less than, how we have nothing to do. But I just wanted to point something out. The people in this entire Adirondack community don't realize how lucky they really are, compared to those who live in a bigger city environment.
Bigger than the state of Massachusetts, the Adirondack forest has 6.1 million acres of property, and about 50 percent of that is owned privately. And in those privately owned areas, there about 130,000 people tucked away in the sleepy woodland.
The schools are not fantastic, some having barely 300 kids pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, but they aren't bad. The teachers can focus more one-on-one with you to ensure that you graduate and have a solid foundation for your future, and they make sure you don't fall through the cracks. The sports might not be great due to the lack of students, but they ensure that all students can play, and it keeps them out of trouble.
The stores are far away, and yes, a Walmart might be fifty or sixty miles out, but it makes you get out there. It makes you travel away from wherever lake you're on and it requires you to go out into the world every once in a while.
And in this state, in this mountain community, there are so, so, so many things to do. There are so many places to swim during the summer and many places to ice skate during the winter. Lake Placid, located in the northern Adirondack Park, is one of three places in the world to host the Winter Olympic Games twice, once in 1932 and 1980. The village was the first in North America to host the event twice, meaning that even the world saw potential in our homeland. There are hundreds of trails to hike and slopes to ski. There are museums to visit and concerts to attend.
In the city, people sometimes have to drive hours to even glimpse trees and forests and lakes. Sure, they have more malls and stores, but we have paradise right in our backyard. Cities worry about overpopulation and pollution, and we can see the stars without climbing to the building tops. We can hear animals at night instead of police sirens.
We'll appreciate this gem we were born into, eventually. We just need to go outside and look around. and maybe take a hike.