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Posts Tagged ‘Rowlett’

“I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and
respecting her seniority.” — Elwyn Brooks White, Essays of E.B. White,  1977

 

This red-eared slider turtle lives in a green world in the creek that runs through Springfield Park in Rowlett, Texas. — Photo by Pat Bean

 

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A Ducky Family

Half-breed ducks at Springfield Park in Rowlett, Texas. — Photo by Pat Bean

When I first began bird watching, a flock of ducks like this  had me scrambling through my guidebooks over and over in my efforts to identify them. A seasoned birder finally took pity on me and explained that they were hybrids, half  mallard-and half something else, usually the white domestic ducks that hang about in civilized ponds.

“You won’t find them in any birding field guide, and the AOU (American Ornithological Union) discounts them as a legitimate bird species,” he said.  “And they can’t reproduce,” he said.

These days I recognize  such hybrids immediately.  And in my crazy mind, they speak to me about how life, in all of its forms, is constantly trying to renew itself.

 

 

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A bit disheveled, but I finally got myself back up from the creek, and Shanna even got a photo of Maggie and I together, which led to my sliding down the cliff. -- Photo by Shanna Lee

“Remember what Bilbo used to say: It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” — J.R.R. Tolkien

Travels With Maggie

Rowlett, one of the many suburbs surrounding Dallas and where my oldest daughter lives, has been my home for the past couple of weeks. What with a grandson’s wedding, other family activities and a fenced backyard for Maggie, I haven’t taken my usually daily walks.

So it was with extreme delight yesterday when my granddaughter, Shanna, Maggie and I were able to escape for a stroll in Rowlett’s Springfield Park, which offers walking paths along a creek and around a lake. For the more adventurous, there’s also a narrow path through the woods that runs alongside a creek. Of course this is the one the three of us took.

A butterfly and wildflowers, evidence of spring bursting out all over. -- Photo by Pat Bean

As we hiked, I took photographs of wildflowers, butterflies, budding trees, great-tailed grackles and the creek. At one point along the hike, a huge gnarl of intertwined tree trunks caught my attention. I decided it would be a great spot for Shanna to take a picture of Maggie and me. Since I’m always the photographer, I don’t have any good photos of my canine traveling companion and me together.

Erosion, however, had cut a part of the path away that I needed to cross to get over to the scenic photo site. Over-estimating my athletic skills, I decided I could maneuver past it.

Bad idea!

One step quickly found me sliding down a steep eight-foot drop. Fortunately I was able to grab hold of a tree snag that counteracted gravity just about six inches before I would have ended up in the creek.

Shanna’s immediate response was to nervously ask: “Are you OK Nana. Are you hurt.” I wasn’t. The only casualty was my turquoise pants whose seat and one leg was a dirty brown. Maggie, whose retractable leash I still had in my hand, gave me a look that clearly said: “That was a stupid thing to do. Don’t expect me to rescue you.”

Since Shanna couldn’t reach me, it was a self rescue using snags to slowly haul myself up, always remembering to make sure I had three limbs firmly placed before I reached for a new hold.

The response from my granddaughter when I reached the top was: “You’re awesome Nana.” Her words made my fall well worth the effort.

Shanna also managed to snap a picture of Maggie and I just before I reached the top of the path again. It wasn’t quite the photograph I had pictured earlier, but I decided it was good enough.

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