I got up at 4am, left my car at the Hartford Amtrak station and took an early morning train to New York City to meet Dr. Robert Butler at 5:20 in the afternoon at the International Longevity Center on 86th Street. With a whole day to walk in a beautiful city, I decided to walk from Pennsylvania Station on 34th Street and 7th Avenue to the Lower Eastside, a mythic place to a second generation immigrant family who came through Ellis Island. So I set off for the Tenement Museum on Orchard Street in the Lower Eastside, a 2.5 mile walk. I bought a ticket for the 1:00 museum tour and headed for Yonah Schimmel’s, a local restaurant famous for a 100 year old recipe for potato knishes. Yum. When the tour was over, I decided to walk uptown from Delancey Street to the International Longevity Center. I made it as far as 45th Street before I ran out of time and took a taxi so I wouldn’t be late. The taxi driver was great. We got into a conversation about the 24 hour Walk for Rides, and agreed that people can all always do more than we think we can. That is actually advice from one of my valued Advisors—my mother.
Dr. Butler planned our walk through Central Park to his apartment, where we both gulped tall glasses of iced water. We talked transportation, children, staying fit as we age, and the transportation needs of people who outlive driving by a decade—most Americans. Dr. Butler has not owned a car in 27 years because he has lived in New York City. That makes perfect sense, but we both know it is not the norm in our country, where more than 90 percent of trips for people age 65 and older are taken in the private automobile, either as a driver or as a passenger. I downed my glass of ice water as I looked through the doctor’s newest book, The Longevity Prescription, just reviewed in the Los Angeles Times (book review: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/booster_shots/2010/06/book-review-the-longevity-prescription-by-robert-n-butler.html). I had such a good time walking through the Park, I forgot to take a picture, but Dr. Butler graciously allowed me to snap one in his apartment, before I left for Penn station and the next leg of my journey.
(6 miles, 46.5 miles total)