Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Central Park's Lake, Minus a Rowboat

Renting a rowboat in Central Park is supposedly easy. Make it to the lake before dusk, and for $12 you can call a boat your own for an hour.

So after a leisurely walk through the park on Saturday we made our way to the rental booth about 7 p.m. . It was closed! We must have barely missed the cutoff for rentals, because there were still at least a half-dozen or so boats gliding about the pond. But no matter-- we were too late and that was all there was to it. Another day.

We had walked by the boat rental booth on our previous visits to Central Park, but this was the first time I noticed large rocks jutting out into the water on the other side of the pond. In lieu of a boat ride, we decided to find those rocks. That's how we found The Ramble.

I'd heard of this part of the park before but had never seen it firsthand. It's 36 acres of trees and dense greenery with a secluded, winding path where it's easy to get lost. I couldn't help but think that this is one of those Central Park spots where people are assaulted after dark. But I digress.

We found the rocks before long and took a seat to watch the rowboats dock across the pond and the diners chow down at the fancy Central Park Boathouse Restaurant nearby.

That should have been us!

Boathouse Restaurant

Delving deeper into the Ramble we found many more "secret" spots, some occupied by couples obviously eager to get away from the buzz of the city, others completely empty.

So even though we lost a rowboat ride, we discovered a whole new part of Central Park that I'm eager to further explore. And anyway, I'll get that boat ride yet.

I'm the one on the bridge, not in the boat.

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