Today is the first day in a week that I haven’t run a fever. I don’t get sick very often, but when I do…I usually get my money’s worth. I missed a week of work and probably worried the folks closest to me, but now I’m thankfully on the mend. Now, there’s a lot of catching up to do and I look forward to reading what my blogging friends have been up to and to share a bit of my world by the river. The following story and images were part of my last expedition to the Falls of the Ohio and made the day before the microbes laid me low. To begin, I’ll start with the first image in this post. There are changes afoot in the park proper. High on the riverbank, the road and parking areas are being expanded and made more accessible. I naturally am a bit troubled by this since I don’t think this unique place needs to be “loved” anymore than it already is. I remember the Falls of the Ohio before its state park designation and the building of the Interpretive Center. I can’t say that I enjoy this space anymore than I did before the building boom began. Change, as “they” say is the only constant and at the Falls of the Ohio, the rocks bear witness to over 375 million years worth of changes. So what’s a few more?
I spent more time scrambling up and down the fossil rocks than I usually do and came across this image. I noticed that the fossil coral on the rock to the left of the tire bore some resemblance to the tire’s tread and created this reciprocal relationship in my pre-fevered brain. Beyond shape and pattern, I’m struck by our dependence on ancient life to advance our own contemporary concerns. The Ohio River buried this tire in this ice age gravel many years a go and here it stays.
I have passed by this scene for a while now, but for some reason just decided to check it out more closely. People often ask me where the larger chunks of Styrofoam I use come from and I reply …”I think they are from floating boat docks”. Now, I actually have proof of this instead of just relying upon conjecture and intuition. The larger object to the right of the wooden slatted form is separate from it and actually deposited by the river prior to the dock’s arrival.
Something unnaturally white seen past the bleaching wood caught my notice and here was my proof. This boat dock or swimming platform was kept afloat by several monolithic sections of polystyrene. As the wood decays and breaks apart, the entrapped Styrofoam is released into the river to continue its journey downstream.
Returning to the rocks, I was poking around when I noticed something verdant. It’s the middle of winter and there isn’t much of anything green to be found anywhere around here. Looking more carefully, I see that some other Falls beachcomber has found a basket of artificial flowers and propped them on this large fallen tree trunk. Here is a different view of that basket.
Although I’m no fan of artificial flowers and ivy (my Dutch grandmother actually forbid them in her house) I find I “like” this picture. Perhaps it’s the illusion of greener times ahead or the considered placement by the basket’s original finder, but it makes me see this place in a way I wasn’t expecting. On site, I remember thinking that this was put here as a gift.
Walking past a recent project I discovered that the small Styrofoam figure I made was still present…but had blown over by the wind.
So, I set him right and moved on to my next project. That will be the subject of my next post barring a relapse of my viral funk. For now, I’m glad to be gaining my strength back and I’m looking forward to returning to work in all its forms.