Saturday, August 31, 2013

Six Mile Run and the Seasons of Marriage

As anyone who has been married for a while knows, marriage has seasons: the early years, the years with babies and toddlers, and so on. Right now, my husband and I have two teenaged boys and no travel soccer on our family calendar any more. This means our weekends are wide open.

So Greg and I have been hiking together on Saturday mornings. This morning we did an early hike - and by early I mean we were at the trailhead by 7 a.m. - at a hidden gem called Six Mile Run Reservoir Site. This is a more than 3,000-acre state-owned park nestled into our congested corner of New Jersey. The park, part of the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park,  isn't easy to find. No signs point motorists to it from Route 27. It shares a parking lot with the Jersey Knights Soccer Club.

Photo courtesy of

We walked a little more than four miles this morning, through forests and open fields, all within view of Six Mile Run creek. All the trails here are open to cyclists, hikers and horseback riders. In fact,  I discovered the park a couple of years ago because our older son has gone mountain biking here. Greg and I thought we'd have the park to ourselves this morning, but we did share our four-mile long trail with three mountain bikers and two runners and we spied two men in waders in the creek. Maybe they were fishing or taking water samples?

While this was a beautiful way to spend time together, Greg did phone our 13-year-old at 8 a.m. from the trail to make sure he was awake and ready for his high school junior varsity scrimmage. We hoped Lucas had found his new goalie gloves but had told him the night before that was his responsibility. After our hike, my husband and I drove the 15 minutes back to our hometown and went out to breakfast. When we arrived at home about 10 a.m., the 16-year--old, Gabriel, was still sleeping. We figured Lucas had made over to the high school turf fields with his new goalie gloves. The evidence was dirty socks on one couch and older goalie gloves on the other.

We savor this season of our marriage because we know it will pass; in a few weekends Gabriel will start competing in cyclocross races across the Mid Atlantic and early Saturday morning hikes will not be possible.

(When I got home a cool video of a mountain bike tour of the park. 

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