Took a field trip to a micro-distillery masquerading as an apple orchard in Valatie, NY. Alright, so it has both. Maybe Golden Harvest Farm does have everything. I spoke with Derek (one of the grandsons of the original owners) about my project and met some fellow whiskey drinkers at the tasting bar who told me about the great ball of fire that came through Berlin, NY in 1962 due to a propane tanker's crash. The destruction was massive for a small community. Anyone who was around the night of the explosion remembers where they were.
If you are interested in learning more about this event take a look at the Times Union article: Death Toll Rolled In On Plank Road for personal accounts.
Men crawling in and out of canisters, barrels etched with marker along the walls, a warm corner for industrious tastings, all hidden behind a market full of peaches, apple cider donuts, sunflowers, towers of baskets, and apples.
ALBANY - NY
I started the day with a tour of the capitol building. Magnificent in its unfinished smattering of changed plans and budgeting. It was a building started with grand ideas and finished by reasonable men. There have been many renovations, many ghosts, and many hands all over the building.
-The 9th president, Van Buren, was the first president born a citizen of the United States of America.
-When a member of the press asked Teddy Roosevelt for an interview he would challenge them to race him up the stairs of the New York State capitol building. If they won, he would give them the interview. Teddy always won.
-Craftsmen carved the faces of their wives and children among the faces of well known Americans.
I was left to my own devices after a tour of the Capitol building. I wandered off to Lark Street where I found a cafe called The Daily Grind to steal some time to work. I worked, I re-caffeinated, and I suited up for my first day as an on the road reporter. Goal: Do one interview. Outlook: Not good.
A number of people turned me down. People are shy! Understandably so, considering the questions. But in the end, I prevailed! TWO interviews.