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Thursday, May 3, 2012

May 3rd Walkabout

Today, I walked and rode bike half a dozen miles. Right out of the gate, I found the evidence of some vandals. They had pulled the earth anchor and chain out of the ground that secured a park bench and tossed the bench, the anchor and the chain into the river between our house and the first stre,et that I had to cross. I was carrying several gallons of liquid in a backpack, two dozen eggs and a box of spring clamps. i put everything down so that I could rescue the bench, ripped a large, dead and forked branch from a tree that overhangs the bank there and fished the bench out. Later, I came back, moved the bench fifty feet closer to our house, so that it would be easier to monitor, and re-buried the earth anchor and nearly two feet of chain. With luck the young toughs will get the picture. I suppose with the cost of the steel, the welding equipment down at the city garage and the thirty dollars or so of plastic lumber, plus painting, assembly and annual collection and dispersal, or installation costs, I probably saved the city over 160 dollars.

The rest of my walk was somewhat less productive, but I did learn a lot about my neighborhood and those to the northeast, up toward Oak Grove. Fer fewer homes are for sale there, but I did see one where I knew the older woman who assisted the person living there. it had been condemned. I also found two delightful little alleys that I had not been on in a while. Walking gave me the chance to absorb some delightful lilac and crab apple blossom scents, let my own breath nourish the trees that are just leafing out and to reclaim a bit of vitality, partly from the fresh air and partly from the rain that fell along my path as I walked. There is a quality of light that occurs on overcast days filled with periods of rain that livens up even the pastel colors of Spring.

Funny, how a walk, to deliver some left-over food, or what amounts to overabundance in our house could benefit the old ladies who routinely walk the trail along the river and appreciate a comfortable place to sit in the shade with a nice view of the river. I had to laugh because the three gallon jugs were first purchased for use in Appleton, over half of the excess was given away to someone who lives within walking distance and another person who lives even further away from the point of purchase.I wanted to walk it over to make sure it also had the furthest distance transported by human power as a way of greening it up. The reward was a slow enough pace to also find time to rescue a bench. Actual, factual proof positive that living lightly on the planet has benefits far beyond what anyone can possibly imagine.

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