Tag Archives: Two Rivers Bridge

Today’s resolution: If there is no choice?

3 Oct

As we begin another work week, here’s something to think about from one of my favorite poets, W.B. Yeats.

The Choice

The intellect is forced to choose
Perfection of the life, or of the work,
And if it take the second must refuse
A heavenly mansion, raging in the dark.
When all that story’s finished, what’s the news?
In luck or out the toil has left its mark:
That old perplexity an empty purse,
Or the day’s vanity, the night’s remorse.
(1932)

Entering the woods of the river walk at Two Rivers Bridge (2011/RO)

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Today’s resolution: Adjust my hat for the best angle

23 Sep

“Not every man has an obligation to mingle in the affairs of the world. There are some who are developed to such a degree that they are justified in letting the world go its own way and in refusing to enter public life with a view to reforming it. But this does not imply a right to remain idle or sit back and merely criticize. Such withdrawal is justified only when we strive to realize in ourselves the higher aims of mankind.

“For although the sage remains distant from the turmoil of daily life, he creates incomparable human values for the future.” — I Ching, 18, Ku/Work on what has been spoiled

Left hanging at Two Rivers Bridge (2011/RO)

Today’s resolution: Brushes with nature

22 Sep

It happened so fast. A small object hurtling through the air, followed by a lightning streak of black across the river path. Frog and  snake. Prey and predator.

Cici and I jumped about as high as that frog when we saw the two of them flash before us near the end of our walk at the Two Rivers Bridge. We cross our hearts and pinky-swear that we’ve never seen a frog jump so high or leap so far or seen a snake slither so fast. We weren’t so bad ourselves.

That frog hopped for his life, propelling his little froggy ass in an arc reaching from one side of the paved path to the grass on the other. That’s where the snake lost him — and stopped. The snake reared up — we have proof — and stood to peer into the grass. Then the frog made the move that saved his life.

He doubled back, hopped out of the grass a few feet away and made an Olympian leap for the other side of the path. He hit it. The snake never saw him; he finally gave up, bellied down to the ground and slid off into the grass.

See that thin black line parallel to the grass in the lower center of the photo? That's our snake. He was too busy hunting his frog to notice us.

Wouldn’t you know, this is when my camera battery would die. But, fortunately, Cici had her iphone and snapped this shot.

The snake was the last of our brushes with nature today. We were near the end of our midday walk and feeling a bit ragged, but the snake gave us the adrenaline rush we needed to make our way to a picnic table, sit down and catch our breath while our eyes jittered back and forth, up and down, scanning the surrounding ground and the tree branches above for snakes. This was not our first snake encounter of the day.

Earlier, near the beginning of the jaunt, a man walking past us pointed out a small snake moseying across the path. This snake was about a foot long and its skin bore the hourglass pattern of a young water moccasin. When moccasins get older — and much, much bigger — the pattern fades and they appear to be a solid color. Don’t mess with water moccasins — they are aggressive, not to mention bad ugly.

We stood and watched respectfully as the little snake wiggled into the horsetails edging the path.

Then we ambled on. And we began to notice the dead frogs. Of course, I shot a photo.

Poor little guy. Was he trying to outhop a snake and run into a cyclist's spokes? We'll never know. Dead frogs tell no tales. Or have tails.

A little bit on down the path, Cici spied another one, this fellow pretty crispy and flattened. Does that look like a bike tire tread on his back?

He's blending into the asphalt through, we're sure, no fault of his own.

After this, we turned our gaze skyward.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

That’s when Cici spotted a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, which she told me is the state bird of Oklahoma. Cici’s good at this nature stuff, isn’t she? She said she saw many of these birds when she lived in Oklahoma. I didn’t take a photo so I looked one up online.

Eastern bluebird

Next, we saw a few eastern bluebirds sitting on a utility line. Sorry, I didn’t get a photo of that either. But I found one for you. Pretty, isn’t it?

Looping back toward the river bridge as we finished our jaunt, we thought our brushes with nature were over.

Until we saw this. Another frog. We were having a froggy day, which reminded Cici that when her now 18-year-old son, Matthew, was little, he referred to heavy, damp, vision-obscuring air as “froggy.” And it is, we have no doubt.

He's missing a leg. No wonder he got squashed. A one-legged frog won't hop far.

Moving along, we thought we had seen all there was to see.

Well, until the frog-and-snake chase flashed before us. We both observed that the snake appeared blade-thin and as if he had flattened himself against the ground, perhaps to boost his slither speed. Wondering if it could be so, this evening I googled “fast snakes flat.” Zip. Got nothing on that, but I did find this interesting tidbit about how snakes manage motion without legs:

“Snakes move by pushing against objects with specialized scales on their bellies called scutes. The scutes act like tire treads, gripping the ground and giving the snake the traction necessary to push itself forward. Also, scutes are hard and protect the snake as it moves along rough surfaces.” — Thank you, University of Indiana

Scutes? Is that like scoots? Hear for yourself.

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Today’s resolution: Stay, cross or …? My choice.

18 Sep

“Discovering and following our own path is something that is our personal business; it is not something that one person can do for another. We each have to make our own contract with Spirit, rather than existing as an unwitting signatory to someone else’s previously drawn-up contract. …

“When we search for our spiritual path, we need to reassess, consolidate, and recommit our spiritual focus — and check contractual details. It’s alright to change course as we seek the best course to Spirit; it is equally alright to stay where we are — as long as we realize that compromising our truth is dangerous.” — Caitlin Matthews, The Celtic Spirit

Bridge on path between I-430 and Big Dam Bridge (2011/RO)

 

 

Today’s resolution: Relaxed productivity

3 Sep

When working for oneself, it’s hard to take time off. The home office has many advantages — no commute, kitchen privileges, office dog, no need to wear a bra, among others — but the downside is knowing when to quit working. And, frankly, most of the time I’m on deadline pressure that dictates my working hours. But sometimes deadline pressure eases and I have the flexibility to take off in the middle of the day and go for a walk.

Two Rivers Bridge

Yesterday, my friend Cici (who also works for herself, cicisartshop.com) and I decided to check out the Two Rivers Bridge and take a walk along the River Trail. We felt fortunate to not only be able to leave our offices midday, but also to have such a lovely locale only a short drive away in which to enjoy nature. Today, I’ll have to work in my office to make up for the time off yesterday, but that’s OK. I have that option.

Here are some photos from our out-of-office experience.

A tired runner takes a break in the shade. The young man told us he'd been on the trail for 2 hours, 45 minutes. He assured us that he was fine, just cooling off before heading back to the parking lot.

Surprisingly, this turtle didn't pull his head into his shell when we approached to take its photo.

Now that's a green space... but don't step on it unless you can walk on water.