So taking full advantage of a beautiful forecast of cooler weather - I consulted the local hikes guide. Oh hey! A hike in my county, with ponds, waterfalls and some challenge for a level - Yesssss, done, let's do this!
And so me and my agreeable pawn of an 8 year old kid (on the internet we mostly call her ART, fyi) found ourselves downloading a pdf map from the DEC website and heading into the woods. The trail was fairly visible, though ART had her doubts about its validity. About 10 yards into this journey ART logged our first strike - the dreaded bug in the eye... Let me rephrase that - the DREADED BUG SQUISHED INTO THE INSIDE OF HER EYELID ATTEMPTING TO MAKE A HOME THERE. A dozen stabs of my fingernails to ARTs eyeball and some freaking out later....we decide to continue down the trail. While the trail became more beat down and rocky ART found herself a good ten steps ahead of me and I found myself spaced out wondering how long til we come across a "pond" or "waterfall" - when suddenly I hear a booming echoing yell of pain. Aka - I logged our second strike. And there was blood, and ART was wiping dirt off my arms for me so I could clean my bloodied leg.
(So much scraping.... Jeeeez). No problem, no problem - I have alcohol pads and band aids - I am mother in this play after all. So we hike on. Closer to each other, silently noting this had not been going so well. And then strikes three, four, five and so on start ringing through the air. My fear was fighting hard to take over the wheel shouting DO YOU NOT HEAR THE BULLETS BEING SHOT THAT YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHERE THEY ARE?? So I calmly said to ART, hey... Do you want to turn around? Maybe we should turn around. In the probable reality of those fine people who probably have property backing the state land - they were legally taking target practice or something totally safe. In my 30 something, single parent, doesn't know shit about where I really am reality --- I'm OUT, time to GET THE HELL OUT OF THE WOODS.
Insta- moral of that tale -- Know thy limits. You are not a country girl.
Far be it from me to be defeated however - we stopped at a nice wildlife educational center on our way home and "hiked" their trails - where we saw lovely little sights like this mini water fall ...aaaah nature..