Monday, August 24, 2009

Valley Guys

Michael and I had the most wonderful time on our weekend excursion to the Hudson Valley (part 1 of my 10-day fur-cation). When my friend Marc first told me he was fleeing the West Village for life in the country, my initial reaction was one of total horror ("You won't last a month!"). And while I still don't exactly "get" country living -- why is everything so spread out and where do all those bugs get off living here??? -- he sure has made a nice life for himself up there. His fixer-upper house -- on nearly 3 acres with a barn(!) -- is coming along splendidly. The area he lives in -- a stone's throw from trendy Beacon and its famed Dia:Beacon art gallery -- is quickly becoming a hot spot for ex-city homos. His friends we met -- Kevin, David, Andy and Tom -- were all friendly and fun (it turns out Kevin and I went to Arizona State at the same time and frequented all the same night spots, yet never met before!). And, above all, Marc's dog, Hondo, completely melted both of our hearts as he answered the age-old question, "Who's a good boy?" Photo highlights follow:

The day we arrived Marc took us to a concert in the nearby town of Hudson. The artist -- whom he'd just fallen in love with the day before -- was a young crooner named Spencer Day. While we were a little thrown off that "nearby" in Hudson Valley terms was actually an hour away, once there at the beautiful Hudson Opera House we thoroughly enjoyed Spencer's brand of jazz, folk and contemporary styles. The concert was moved indoors because of hot and humid weather, but the real reason Spencer's shirt was soaking wet was from exerting so much charm. (Look for him on an upcoming "Late Show With Craig Ferguson.") Dinner afterward at the Red Dot -- which about made most joints in Chelsea seem exclusively heterosexual -- was fun, hair in Michael's french fries notwithstanding.

With our charming host on his "property," a word that people "up north" seem to use a lot
Puppy Love: With Hondo, who is lucky I didn't surreptitiously relocate him to Chelsea
In the garden at Dia:Beacon, an art gallery housed inside an old Nabisco factory


james said...

Spencer, recently from San Francisco, is indeed a charmer on stage with a beautiful voice, but off the stage, has more attitude than charm.

Kenneth M. Walsh said...

James -- we actually ran into him "in town" after the show and he was absolutely sweet as can be.

Marc Lallanilla said...

Hondo loves New York City, where the streets are paved with food. (You never realize how much old pizza, burgers and bagels are tossed around until you walk a hungry dog there.) But trying to find a grassy place to pee -- not so fabulous. (You also never realize how much concrete there is until you get a dog who was trained to do it ONLY on the grass.)