To the Times of Ti: My family and I recently went back to New York for a vacation from Korea and I wanted to share some of those experiences with you. We often take the vistas and attractions near to home for granted and fail to take advantage of them. A case in point is Fort Ticonderoga; growing up in Putnam we visited the fort occasionally as a school trip, and never as a family trip. For the past several years I have been taking my children to visit Fort Ticonderoga and every year they have a great time there. There are a lot of improvements being made to the exhibits and each year we discover something new or find something old we missed before. The Fife and Drum Corp is always a sight to see, and the musket and canon demonstrations are informative and loud, and the kids love loud. Take the time to visit the fort even though it is always there, and you wont be disappointed. Another place I hadnt visited for decades was Black Mountain near Huletts Landing. We climbed the 2.5 mile trail from the inland side and were rewarded with a spectacular view of Lake George. It is an easy well maintained trail from the inland side, with many plants and animals to observe. There is also access from Lake George, and that trail is reportedly much steeper. We spent two weeks in Putnam and then moved on to my wifes home town of Waterloo. Two parks I would recommend seeing in the Finger Lakes region are the State Park at Watkins Glen and Taughannock Falls State Park. Both offer views of spectacular water falls and sheer cliffs. The power and persistence of nature is demonstrated as you walk through gorges carved by the constant flow of water. Near Watkins Glenn State Park is the Corning Museum of Glass which was a great time for both the kids and adults. We got to see glass blowing, look at exhibits of glass art, and see the many innovations that glass has afforded our society through the years. Whether it is Black Mountain, Fort Ticonderoga or a mountain, lake, or gorge near you, these are sights that we should all remember from when we were younger and went of school trips or family hikes to see. Remember how much you enjoyed going to those places, and then share those with your child, grandchild, niece, nephew or neighbor. My family gets to enjoy those sights only a few weeks out of every year, you can go tomorrow. Thomas Bain Putnam Editors note: Thomas Bain is a Putnam native serving in the U.S. Army in Korea.