There were so many ways from her house out to Route 9 that it sometimes seemed a labyrinth. In mid-summer each road tunneled through a canyon of impenetrable green, a jungle of wild grape and loose strife. By November the hardwood was no longer festive and the woods showed their bones like the skeletons of dia de los muertes. In another month you would be able to see the forest floor.
Wappingers Creek Road took you back along the creek bank first past the boat launch and finally past sad river town working class flats to the center of the village. Or you could make the hairpin loop and rise along 28 through Hughsonville past 9D to 9, emerging at La Fonda del Sol and Seven Eleven. You could take the left at 9D and come into the village that way, then follow the road right where the Delano family shared a lot for their two businesses, Delano Brothers Paving and Delano's the Italian restaurant with home-made cavatelli and old-fashioned red sauce specked with oregano. Past the park and the ugly new suburban Post Office you dead-ended in a T at 9, Home Depot and Ben&Jerry's to the right on opposite sides of the highway, Wendy's and eventually Poughkeepsie to the left. Going left at Delano's instead of right also brought you to 9 eventually after you circled through the old part of the river town, past Mill Street, where the other route, via Wappingers Creek Road, emerged and around the bend where the falls were hidden and through the northside where yet another possible route also emerged.
You reached that one if you looped back through New Hamburg from the house making a right where 28 ended at Main Street and where a left would take you to the railway station. Turning right you rose instead to a fork, a dogleg really, where Channingville Road went straight ahead on over a ridge and past the Catholic church cemetery where the boy was buried down to the north side of the village once known by the name of the road. You could pick up 9D here again on the other side of the village and follow it to 9 near North Hills Mall which had become the ugly discount step-sister in the years since the Galleria, itself now fading, had been built. The dogleg outside New Hamburg took you there by another route, along Sheafe Road past Bowdoin Park and to another T, where the right brought you to the Galleria side of the mile-long complex of old and newer malls. In Bowdoin Park some fifteen thousand years ago indians camped in the caves above the river and left petroglyphs of impossible beauty beyond the blue page of the water, though you had to know your way through the park trails and crawl in tunnel-like caves to find them.