Peaceful Morning on the American River. Wm Pond Park, American River Parkway, Sacramento, CA, APR 2015 (Click on image to enlarge)
Irises on the Bank. Wm Pond Park, American River Parkway, Sacramento, CA, APR 2015 (Click on image to enlarge)
As often as I have walked along the banks of the American River, at William Pond Park, I never realized that much of the vegetation I saw was wild irises. But, imagine if you will, clumps of the brilliant yellow blossoms outlining both sides of the shore for perhaps a half mile or so, complimenting the lupine and other wildflowers. Though there are some wild irises that are native to northern California, I haven’t been able to find if this particular species is or is not and even if it is, whether they are native to the banks of the American River. Regardless, they provide a real treat.
A Ghostly Memory, Bodie CA, AUG 2014. Click on image to see larger, higher resolution image.
A column of sunlight illuminates the dim kitchen as evening arrives. The cooking and baking is done. The kids have been fed. The table is set. All is ready for the master of the house to return from his day’s work. A typical day in Bodie during the late 1800’s and early 1900’s? Probably. But now, the counter cleaned and the table prepared goes unused. They are covered with a thick layer of dust reminiscent of the flour once mixed in the bowl and baked in the tin. A ghostly memory of a kitchen filled with voices: laughter, worry, love, turmoil. How was your day? Is one of the kids outgrowing his shoes? Do we have enough food to put up for the winter? Long ago abandoned, this kitchen, this house, sits as a snapshot, a moment in time representative of joy and struggles of lives once lived.
A few weeks ago, Donna and I spent a balmy Saturday exploring the Emerald Bay area of Lake Tahoe. One of the features of Emerald Bay is Eagle Falls. Eagle Falls is a big, beautiful waterfall; well worth the hike to see. But I was more intrigued by a small fingerling stream at its base. The early rays of sun illuminated the miniature canyon through which it flowed. Its miniature boulders created whitewater as the stream flowed over a waterfall into a deeper canyon. All the while, Eagle Falls rumbled in the background adding ambiance to the miniature world it helped create. I love to see ecosystems that replicate the grandiose in miniature. I think about how every stream and river started as a trickle and eroded their way into mountainside, plateau and delta, forming the spectacular scenery we see and appreciate. But, the next time you are at a grand vista, look for the small, hidden, treats also. They are often as worthy of appreciation.
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