Tim Moriarty: VIEWS FROM THE BRIDGE

Timothy Moriarty is managing editor of Wine Enthusiast Magazine in Mt. Kisco.
Hudson River Palisades

The Hudson River Palisades. photo: http://www.dougschneiderphoto.com

Every time I cross the Henry Hudson Bridge on my way into Manhattan, I make a point of glancing east and west. East you see the Bronx, a teeming sea of grime-tinged tenement and high-rise rooftops, billboards, warehouses and a grid of streets; west is the Hudson River and the Palisades, unmarked by so much as a shack. Surging water, sheer cliffs dense with trees—teeming with a different kind of life, of course, but very much as it has looked for millennia.

Paradise to the west and urban hellhole to the east? I beg to differ. I almost died one night up in the Palisades, and have never even had an unpleasant experience in the Bronx, if you discount those at Yankee Stadium. Read more…

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11 Responses to Tim Moriarty: VIEWS FROM THE BRIDGE

  1. Kathy Mangan says:

    What a great read, a capsule story in 5 graphs. Funny yet introspective. I love the second graph, and the ending. It’s hard to write short, you nailed it. Well done!

  2. Sheila Callahan says:

    “Don’t have a choice. It’s a bridge. I just drive.” Love it.

  3. Paul Ross says:

    My wife and I had a similar experience on the Abel Tasman Track in New Zealand. I wonder how many of these stories you DON’T hear about because of the ‘alternate’ ending? Good work. Compact yet with feeling and reflection.

  4. JUDIE FEIN says:

    I have to quote these lines from Moriarity’s piece: ” It was only the next morning, when the sun was up, that we realized we had pitched our tent a mere yard or two from a sheer cliff. A few more stumbly steps in the dark and we might have fallen to our deaths.” Talk about metaphors! This seems to sum up a lot of life when you take chances. You don’t realize you are right near a cliff at the time, and then, the next morning, you realize that you could have gasped your last. This writer seems to have a head full of metaphors, and I love it.

  5. rachelbirds says:

    Love it. Now every time I scan the Pallisades searching for falcons, in the back of my mind I’ll be searching for a little tent perched near the edge.

  6. Kayt Sukel says:

    I get lost in that view every time I cross the Henry Hudson, too. Love this!

  7. Janice Wald Henderson says:

    So much said with so little words. The essence of good writing. As someone who grew up in Hastings-on-Hudson overlooking the Palisades, I love how this piece transports me to another time and era.

  8. Denise Dube says:

    “… I can wonder which direction I prefer: crazy, physically energetic but rock-stupid youth, or placid but savvy, deeply pleasurable and rewarding old age? But why bother? I don’t have a choice. It’s a bridge. I just drive.”

    An incredible journey in just a few paragraphs. The ending is quite a kicker. Wonderful piece.

  9. Tim, A wonderful story with rich provocative images . I cross the Washington Bridge often by bike, on my way to River Road for dreaded hill repeats with my triathlon team. Pedaling across the Bridge to drivers might make us seem free as birds (perhaps even the flacon Rachel is looking for), but unlike a car, there are a number of very steep turns and if you go to fast, you might either likely to collide into a cyclist coming from the opposite direction or a walking family taking up the entire sidewalk. The ride through the Palisades on the park road is exactly the paradise you mention — until we arrive a River Road, a one-mile hill which feels more like a mountain — by the third (and last) repeat, I feel pretty much the way you did — wondering why I am trying to keep living my rock-stupid youth!

  10. The picture and the anecdote remind me how much I love driving up the east side of the Hudson River from Manhattan!

  11. Thanks for showing me a piece of our country that is so familiar to you and was unknown to me. I look forward to a trip across that bridge for the first time but looking out as if I already know it.

    Diane Covington

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