I went to high school my junior & senior year at Orchard Park High School in Western New York. My friend Ted Blazjewski. and I cut firewood together. From time to time went drove south and east of Orchard Park in search of the simple supplies we needed to cut, split, and haul firewood. Once my parents took Johnny (my brother) & me to Letchworth State Park, and once, we went to Ithaca. I sat in a park on the banks of Lake Cayuga while I waited for my parents to return from whatever they were doing — then return to Orchard Park. Even after we moved to Grand Island to teach there and in Lockport, we never really ventured into the interior. Our elder son was at Cornell for five years, so ignorance of the Southern Tier finally was at an end. It is truly gorgeous. Cornell itself sits on one of the very tall hills – almost mountains that are New York’s share of the Appalachians. Looking out across Lake Cayuga and over Ithaca in the valley bottom is the western shore of the lake. The drive up the shore has a great view of the lake, the entrance to gorges cut over the millennia into the lake’s edges, and some very good wineries.

©2007 Joseph Yarbrough

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