It should come as a shock to no one that living in New York City can be stressful. I love New York City and honestly itch to come back after more than two days anywhere else, but there are some things New York City will never be able to provide for me. Fortunately, most of those things can be found but a day trip away be it to the beaches of Fire Island and Cherry Grove or the fresh air of the Hudson Valley.
I was recently reminded of one of my day trips from several years ago to visit the yet to be opened Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary when I saw my friend and fellow vegan activist Rachel Kay's picture with Dylan:
When I first met Dylan he was still a bottle feeding calf, looking for trouble while ambling around on legs he'd yet to grow into. My friend Moni and I went to Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary to help build fence during a snowy winter day in 2006. Throughout the visit Dylan followed us around providing endless amusement.
It's been years since I've visited a farm animal sanctuary but this year Woodstock opened their guesthouse b&b which strikes me as the perfect excuse to plan a trip in the coming months. (Discounted stay if you volunteer while there!) The past three bookswaps I've hosted with Olivia Lane have benefited Woodstock and I can't say enough about the amazing work these sancturites do rescuing farm animals, educating the public and providing much need connection with the animals us activisits are so determined to protect. Take for example the recent story of an abused pig named Julia rescued recently after being brutaly beaten who gave birth at Farm Sanctuary but 8 hours after rescue to 16 PIGLETS!
It's always amazing to see the before and after pictures of these rescues, and in the case of Julia to watch the response of social media to carrying animal activists to the continuing horror that is factory farming.
Seeing pictures of Dylan as an grown up being cuddled by another loving vegan warmed the heart of this cynical New Yorker and I look forward to my next trip upstate to visit the old man.