I saw the fawns who've visited a couple of times. They are getting big, nearly adult size. They were back quite a ways from the trail, and I wasn't sure it was them until, as we walked, the bigger one actually stepped around a sapling trunk to get a better look! The adults wouldn't do that. Their spots are almost gone, too. Of course, they were out of Scrappy's nose range and God forbid he should see something that isn't right in his path and close enough to spit on him.
On California Rd. we saw a bush full of goldfinches. I often see them, but I've not seen more than a pair at a time before- and there were probably 4 or five couples this time. I tried to sneak up and get a pic, but they were a) too small to get with my camera without getting real close, and b) they were too shy to stick around, even though Scrappy was very good and sat as told while I tried.
At the corner of Parnell and California, I told Scrappy, "Are you ready for a new adventure?" Knowing what I was thinking, he sat down and waited for the command as we crossed over to the other side of Clinton for the first time (translation: the first time we'd crossed a 4 lane road on a walk). Down past Appleby's, across the Northcrest lot, past the doors of Kohls, and on around the back of Banditos.
Along the way, we passed several normal, nondescript houses with their backs to us. Then came a place that stood out. Surrounded by a wood fence in a state of partial to near total collapse, back yard packed with all kinds of junk, swingsets, an above ground pool, a haul-behind trailer sitting nose-up- and just to set it off, leaning against the house just past the trailer, an old dirty sign: "PTA meeting 6 pm". Following this house was a more normal yard, eschewing the junk while retaining the unmown grass and unkempt garden; and then, in total contrast, a beautiful yard with a fountain and a rock garden. Then, back to non-descript normalcy. Scrappy in the meantime had hit his highlight- the culvert was full of water.
Then up the road until we hit the one spot we'd considered for so long- the invasion of Bishop Dwenger.
Much kinder in our assault than North Side was Friday night (translation: goodbye 35-game conference winning streak), we made our way along the track field until we reached the building. Which is where I saw what was, to me, a curious sight.
Scrappy, already pictured at IPFW, wanted to make sure he had a good Catholic education on his resume, as well, I guess.
(Now, lest anyone thinks I'm making light of the Church, I'll remind you I am a proud graduate of St. Louis Besancon school, New Haven. I have however, moved to a more non-denominational faith, and my questions were of a theological nature, not a sarcastic one. With me it's hard to tell the difference, I know.)
Anyhow, we proceeded down Washington Center until we reached that bane of Washington Center drivers, Dartmouth Avenue. Dartmouth is a main drag into a residential area with a traffic light That constantly makes traffic on Washington Center wish for an overpass to avoid it. This is why we cut over at Wallen and then Auburn to get home rather than have to cross it. This morning, though, Scrappy and I crossed Dartmouth, thinking on the possibility of taking Coldwater back down to Coliseum Blvd and back across. But on looking at how far it still was just to get to Coldwater, we re-crossed our Indus and like Alexander headed back for Persia. Didn't put a damper on Scrappy. Despite the fact we were at the hour-and-twenty-minute mark at Dartmouth, he was still bugging me to cross Washington Center as well (why, I don't know), until we finally re-crossed Clinton at Walgreens and returned to familiar territory.
By the time we made it home, 1:40 after leaving, I was whupped. It was getting warmer, and harder to breathe. Scrappy? He still had the energy to demand and eat his breakfast when we got in(translation: he usually just gets a drink, cools off, falls asleep, and leaves breakfast set until lunch on much shorter walks.)
As you can see now, though, it does take its toll.