When I was a kid, we lived about a block from “the duck pond.” It had a proper name. But it was a very small town and that’s what everyone called it. Back then, the town catered to the ducks. There was a feeding station where you could get a half of a cottage cheese container full of corn for like a dime or something and then you could happily feed the ducks.
They had some kind of an aerator system that kept about a third of the pond from freezing in the winter, which kept the ducks there year round. There was even a yield sign with a picture of a duck crossing the street. Everyone knew the ducks had the right of way.
It was magical when I was little. I loved them all the way through high school….even though their forays into and across the street made me late for school on several occasions.
I also just loved the energy of the park. The trees were beautiful and mature. And it was never a busy place.
When I left that little town at 18 to go to college, I pretty much left everything behind, including my favorite park. Life got busy and I rarely went back there….for like over 30 years.
About 5-7 years ago, there were some major life events that pulled us back there. It didn’t take long for my husband to fall in love with the town and everything in it. We now visit frequently and for extended periods. It’s his happy place.
Two summers ago, we hung out at the park/duck pond for a while. As with most things, a lot has changed. The feeding station is gone. Geese have joined the ducks. The pond is allowed to freeze over completely now. And people no longer seem enamored with any of them. It’s kind of sad.
But the place is still beautiful. The trees are still huge. The vibe is still good.
We were sitting in the midst of a cluster of trees and I was suddenly struck by nostalgia. I was appreciating these massive trees and realizing that they were ancient and were certainly there when I was a kid. In a world where nothing stays the same, this continuity was shockingly and deeply comforting.
I started to feel like I was being surrounded, not by trees, but by stately matriarchs. They started to feel like old, wise family! And then I started wondering if they remembered me. I wondered if they could shed any light on parts of my childhood that I have yet to figure out.
Think of all the history that is witnessed by trees. Wouldn’t it be fascinating and edifying to be able to know what they know? What if they’re the world’s historians and record keepers?
Communicating with trees…Perhaps a new endeavor, a new hobby has found me. What a fun ride! Care to join me?
I’m glad you’re here 💜
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