Tags

, , , , ,


Yesterday was full of rain. I don’t like driving in the rain. Actually, I’m fine with driving in the rain, I don’t like the other people who drive in the rain.
Last weekend I wanted a bagel. There might be a number of people who read this on the East Coast who are saying, “So what?” There are probably other people who are thinking, “Go to the grocery store. Thomas’ makes bagels.”
Bagels are hard to come by around here. And packaged store bagels arent real bagels. I wanted a real bagel. Unfortuantely, for me to get a real bagel means having to drive 27 miles away. 
If you live in Texas, twenty-seven miles isn’t a big deal. To put it in some perspective for any New Jersey people who might read this, the (rough) equivelent of me going to buy a bagel is the same as driving from Parsippany, NJ to somewhere in Manhattan. Or to Warwick, NY. Or almost to Blairstown. And, just to be thorough, just past Edison to the south. So imagine jumping into the car and driving up to Warwick, NY for a bagel. And then driving right back.
While we’re on this subject, really quick, sometimes people up in the Northern regions assume I’m close to Dallas. In fact, job recruiters routinely call me and ask if I’d be interested in a job in the Dallas area and then get all offended when I tell them that it’s a little far for a commute. Dallas is 183 miles away from me in an almost straight line.
Here is a picture of a map with a green radius of 183 (actually 183.305) miles centered on Parsippany where 287 and Rt. 80 meet:

The funny thing is, I have no trouble thinking of making a jaunt up to the Dallas area just for fun, but I would have rather have jumped out a window than drive from Parsippany to anywhere up past Buffalo, NY.  Houston, by the way, is a little close being only 162 miles away. San Antonio is practically a walk at 98 miles. The neat thing is both Dallas and San Antonio are nearly straight shots. I can leave my parking lot, make a right, drive a few seconds and make a U-turn, then drive the mile or so to I35 and either make a right to get to Dallas (it’s on I35) or make a left and go to San Antonio (it, also, is on I35). Houston is more complicated but not by much.
Anyway, I didn’t actually realize how far 27 miles was until I looked at the map there and figured out how far I wouldn’t have wanted to drive when I was living in NJ.


Augustine used his walking stick to climb a moderately steep hill strewn with tree roots and rocks. He was glad he had found it and had the good sense to pick it up. The creek had gotten slightly wider. He couldn’t make a long step to get across it now, it would be more like a slight jump. The creek now sat deeper in a ravine, though, which made it more of a mental challenge to cross. 
The trees were thicker here. Looking up, he could saw a canopy of leaves with slight patches of blue mixed in with broad expanses of green. Augustine stepped through long dead brambles using his stick to keep from falling over.
After a while the ground leveled out again. Augustine thought about the village. He’d only been gone a few hours but he wondered if anyone missed him. He thought, belatedly, that he should have told someone he was going for a walk. A long walk. 
Then he looked around him and wondered if anyone else had ever walked where he was walking right now. Was he the very first? Or were their a tribe of people who passed by this very spot? A rock sticking up out of the ground caught his attention and he walked over to it. There were more rocks buried by the remnants of dead leaves. He cleared some of them away and saw that there were other rocks starting to form a semi-circle. He brushed away more leaves and saw that the rocks did, indeed, create a circle. Augustine straightened up and surveyed the circle of rocks. Then he pushed in the center with his walking stick and watched as leaves, sticks, and other forest debris fall into a deep hole.
A well, probably. The rocks were probably the base level to a rock wall that surrounded the well. Well (ha!), he supposed he wasn’t the first person. But why build a well when the creek was right near by? He walked around, away from the stones, until he found the remnants of what was a wall. Augustine couldn’t say if it was part of a house or a way to mark a boundary. 
Either way, Augustine found it fascinating. Somebody, at some time (long ago judging by the dilapidation) lived here. Maybe even before the creek was born. Were creeks born? How did they start out? He would have to remember this place and come back to explore more.
Augustine started back towards the creek to continue his journey when he felt something under the sole of his boot. He cleared away some leaves and found an old, simple, knife. He picked it up. It may come in handy even though it was badly in need of a sharpening.
 

Advertisements