In Bellingham, Wash., 90 miles from Seattle, one can spend a few days hiking, biking and feasting on oysters. Outside Atlanta, a weekend of wine tasting in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains beckons. There are hidden spots in Chicagoland’s suburbs that are perfect for camping. In Ojai, “an electromagnetic vortex of good energy” 80 miles from Los Angeles, you’ll find otherworldly sunsets and the world’s largest outdoor bookstore.
In Brooklyn, where I live, $2.75 will get you a ticket on NYC Ferry, whose six daily routes service all five boroughs and, through Sept. 11, Governors Island (where you can glamp overnight, if you’d like).
Earlier in the pandemic, I wrote a newsletter for The Times about how to lead a full and cultured life at home, or close to it. I’d thought that, as pandemic restrictions eased, there’d be less need for such counsel, and dreamed that the world would fling open its gates and all of us, too-long cooped-up, would come cartwheeling through. Continuing complications hadn’t figured into the fantasy.
Something I realized, thinking and writing for a year and a half about what to do while you’re at home, is that these activities don’t have to be consolation prizes. There’s as much wonder and delight to be found nearby as there is at the other end of a long plane trip. You don’t have to look far to find it.