“One’s age should be tranquil, as childhood should be playful. Hard work at either extremity of life seems out-of-place. At midday the sun may burn, and men labor under it; but the morning and evening should be calm and cheerful.” – Thomas Arnold
Adventures with Pepper: Day 6 Continued
Playful black-billed magpies followed my journey this day. I seemed to see them everywhere, and they delighted my soul.
The first time I became aware of these birds was in the mid-1980s during a visit to a friend’s house in Glenn’s Ferry, Idaho. A half-dozen or so of them were frolicking above the Snake River. I was enchanted, and have stayed that way. With magpies shadowing my drive after leaving Dinosaur National Park, I soon crossed into Colorado and through the small town of Dinosaur.
It was here, in October of 2009, that a mythical portal consumed Marvel Comics’ Dark Avengers.
I wondered if the portal was located on the city’s Brontosaurus Boulevard, Stegosaurus Freeway or Tyrannosaurus Trail.
The city had been renamed Dinosaur from Artesia to capitalize on the monument that stretches from Utah into Colorado, and then the city fathers began to get playful with its street names.
My scenic Highway 40 route this day also took me through Maybell, which holds Colorado’s lowest recorded temperature record – minus 61 degrees F; and Craig, which claims to be the Elk Hunting Capital of the road.
My stopping place for the night was Yampa River State Park near Hayden, where even more magpies were hanging out. Pepper took a running leap at one that came too close and jerked the leash out of my hand. I could almost hear her shout “free-at-last” as she began running circles around me. It wasn’t the first time this had happened.
A smart dog, Pepper had wised up to the fact that it was easy for me to grab hold of the trailing retractable leash, so she had started picking it up and running with it.
Yup! I think playful was the word of the day.
Book Report: 51,306 words. An aha moment gave me the perfect conclusion for my book, but made me realize I’ll have more rewriting to do so I can add a continuous thread. It was like getting both good news and bad news at the same time.
Bean’s Pat: East London Art Walk
Now I might enjoy this kind of walk almost as much as I do my nature walks. It would be a fun change of pace anyway. Perhaps one day I might even get to London. I’ve never visited Europe, but I have visited 46 of the 50 states, and after this journey I’ll have knocked off 49.