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Places to go in 2014 not too far from home

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An article in the the New York Times on Jan. 12 was titled “52 Places to Go in 2014.”

It prompted daydreaming of riding the luxury Tren Crucero train through Latacunga, Ecuador, and spotting a few of their 1,600 birds species and 4,000 varieties of orchids. The decision might get gut-wrenching — to have to decide between Taiwan’s 70-mile Kenting National Park or staying on the Albanian Coast between Greece and Montenegro, about 45 miles east of Italy in a waterfront inn for less than $50 a night.

Of course, I would never want to rule out Dubai, Nepal or the Arctic Circle. On second thought, in lieu of all the cold and snow we’ve been blessed with lately I am most definitely ruling out the trip to the Arctic Circle, even though they boast dramatic northern light safaris from luxury adventure hotels.

Decisions. Decisions.

What was gratifying to read was the inclusion of Indianapolis — number 34 of 52 places. They briefly highlighted our capital’s urban $63 million, eight-mile bike-friendly Indy cultural trail which connects the White River State Park to the city market and five downtown neighborhoods including arty Fountain Square.

With an upcoming wedding and high school graduation party I can rationally re-title the Times article, “51 Places I won’t be going in 2014” but have come up with a more conceivable list for my 2014.

Three places I will be going in 2014 that are less than a 20-minute drive:

Pump House Antiques — I have passed this antique store located at 158 N. Main St. in Bargersville too many times without stopping, usually because the husband, who happens to be allergic to shopping with me, is driving. 2014 is the year. I am sure they will have some fantastic items for my garden.

Grandpa Jeff’s Trail Rides — Our family went twice last fall and loved how relaxing it was. It was like having horses without the time-consuming complexity of caring, feeding and watering them all year. Located at 5889 S. Skinner Road in Morgantown, they’re open year round, so I plan on at least one snow ride before spring.

Mallow Run Wine and Canvas — It seems all my friends are doing these sip-and-paint evenings, so I have created some wall space just awaiting my new masterpiece. I was wondering how can it be that I’ve never even visited Mallow Run Winery, 6964 W. Whiteland Road, Bargersville? Hopefully I can pick up a few Vitis gardening tips while I’m there.

See you around Johnson County!

Janet Hommel Mangas, the third of seven children, grew up on the east side of Greenwood. The Center Grove area resident and her husband are the parents of three daughters. Send comments to letters@dailyjournal.net.

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