Monday, October 6, 2014
It was a beautiful Fall day. We were driving to a public park in a nearby town, about eight miles from our home. It was a small park, announced by a non-descript sign, but unless you knew where to look, you’d never see it. Wooden benches were scattered in a haphazard pattern along the grass on either side of a creek. There was a gravel path, mostly overgrown with weeds that led to a bridge that straddled the creek.
We had been here before but on this day we walked further inside the park. On one side of the water we discovered some fields for play, a few swings, and a small waterfall that splashed over the few rocks imbedded in the ground. On the other side were modestly rolling hills and some houses whose backyards led down to the water. The owners had decorated the bank with windmills and plastic flowers that added color and fun to the surroundings.
Further on, the water ran under a main road in town and appeared again under the crossing to resume its amble through the weed-grassy fields. It provided a reminder of the days when the town was mostly farms.
It wasn’t an impressive park but it was a delight all the same. I watched the water tumble onto the rocks and slowly go back to its calm meandering. I saw a young man taking photos – with a real camera – along the water’s edge. I smiled at the couple having a conversation on one of the benches and I let out a sigh as we approached our car for the drive home.
It was the kind of day that helps a person breathe deeper, to set aside whatever might be on your mind, if only for a brief time. But that respite is truly a treasure in our frenetic world. And all it took was a short ride and the willingness to look deeper into what seemed like nothing special. I’m glad we have parks.
Why are parks valuable?http://www.brec.org/index.cfm/page/1808/n/153