I think that a lot of my friends in New England don't realize just what an incredible run their Patriots have had over the past eleven years. It seems that they are now not satisfied if the team doesn't make it to the Super Bowl. Having an incredible string of winning seasons and playoff appearances is not enough. But all you need to do is look at the number of NFL teams that have either never made it to the big game or have made just one appearance without winning (list of Super Bowl Teams) to realize that getting to the big game, let alone winning it, is a difficult task. The Baltimore Ravens won the Lombardi Trophy this year after a season that many consider to have been less than stellar. However, they got all of their injured players back and went on an incredible run, knocking off the two top-seeded teams in their home ballparks. The Ravens have had many great teams since their 2000 Super Bowl win. They had been to several AFC Championship games but did not manage to get back to the game. So Patriot fans, enjoy your team's unbelievable decade of success because once Mr. Brady retires, it may be a loooooooong time before you get back to the playoffs and Super Bowl. One of my favorite outdoor activities has always been to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge. Many years ago when walking across the Bridge, you would encounter just a handful of people. Now it is like Grand Central Station at rush hour but the trip is still spectacular and unique. (A recent addition to the bridge is the large clusters of padlocks--a romantic gesture started in Rome several years ago Daily News Story). And the transformation of downtown Brooklyn over the past 20+ years is staggering. Blocks that used to be filled with vacant and vandalized buildings are now vibrant with parks, residential and commercial buildings. This area is known as DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) and I suggest a visit to the Brooklyn Bridge Park to take in the view of the Freedom Tower rising as well as to ride Jane's Carousel. You wouldn't know that this gem opened in 2011 was under water during the Sandy surge. Even though they have reopened, they are still working on repairs. And the Barclays Center, home of the Brooklyn Nets, at Atlantic Avenue seems to have sparked additional investment. If you are visiting NYC in the near future, I recommend a detour to Brooklyn.