Puppy Shadow and I drove ten minutes north to our favorite close-by nature trail. And were surprised to find at least 30 cars parked there. More than ever before! Maybe covid has gotten more people used to the idea of going for walks in nature?
I remember my dear mom, asking me why I no longer attend Mass on Sunday. “Nature is my church!” I shot back. “Oh, I’ve heard that one before,” she responded, dismissing the notion. “Yes, you have. Let’s hope so!” I want to say now.
And yep, those tiny altars are still there, at least a year after I first noticed them, both close to where the trail up the hill begins. Except for candles, the first one is in a sad state, except it does sport a new Easter basket.
But the second one . . . oh, my!
I’m so glad to see that recently deceased Nobel Prize winner and former IU professor Eleanor Ostrom was right. It’s not always the case, she claimed and demonstrated, that the old adage known as “the tragedy of the commons” is true. There are times when we the people do care for and sustain what is worth honoring, including these special little altars.
As we walked up the hill, I noticed that those we met going the other way did not have masks on! Of course I was amazed and thrilled, as I greeted each one with Happy Easter! and they greeted us back.
I’m especially thrilled to say that out of maybe 50 strangers who passed us today on the trail, only five had masks on. The first one was what I notice is seemingly typical for maskers: overweight, shuffling, eyes downcast, appearing thoroughly demoralized and decidedly isolated. He didn’t greet us back.
The other masked ones were a family of four of Asian descent, with beautiful dark expressive eyes. They were very friendly, and easily returned my Easter greetings.
So you never know. I need to stop generalizing. But of course, I can’t. It’s the way I’m wired. On the other hand, I can call myself out for my mistakes, and do, regularly.
The hill is, what? 300 feet high? Not that high, but just that much change in elevation has a decided effect on plant life. It was still almost winter on top —
and decidedly spring down below.
At one point Shadow decided to get in the water.
The creek itself is a joy. Walking along its edge, curving this way and that, the way water does when it encounters any obstacle. Would that I could become like water, flowing freely, willing to bend when necessary, nourishing tree roots, pooling, gurgling, running to the sea —
— or, in this case, the lake, Griffy Lake, a manmade body of water that used to serve the city of Bloomington, before they created Lake Monroe. See the difference? Griffy Lake is the tiny one, up top left. Lake Monroe is humungous, easily the largest lake in Indiana.
Notice, in this photo of Griffy Lake, what is it, a woodpecker? I didn’t even see it, or that I had centered the picture around it, when I snapped the photo.
I’ll end this Easter Sunday paean to ever-resurrecting nature with two versions of the Hallelujah.
The first, from reader Rose:
As one commenter said, this is the only Christian version that even comes close to the “spirit and suffering” rendered in Cohen’s original version.