A peaceful moment inYellowstone National Park, Leslie and I--we were about to leave Yellowstone and all the magnificent bison and elk and discover the sublime Grant Tetons.
Today is the 100th aniversary of the establishment of the National Park system. I have not seen enough national parks yet, they are wonderful places. Yellowstone was all I expected but with fewer bears than I'd been led to beleive. The Tetons were the most perfect mountains I've ever seen and I've seen mountains on five continents, many "grander" but the Tetons reflected in the lake as we drove south from Yellowstone were stunningly beautiful. I've seen Yosemite and Bandolier, Acadia and a tiny bit of the Smoky Mountans - not nearly enough. Grand Canyon is conspicuously missing so far and Glacier and then there's Denali, a park to dream about.
Nicholas Kristof in an editorial essay in Sunday's NYTimes writes of the treatsure of the parks. He mentions that, like so many of the things people of America value, (education, arts, music..) the Parks' budget is constantly cut -- a foolish cut. When trails and roads need repair there is not enough money so they are allowed to disintegrate until repairing them may require entirely new trails which will cost far more.
Out little writing group had chosen national parks as the theme for today's writing. Everyone had experiences with one or many parks, warm memories, and in the case of Everglades, unhappy memories. I have found times in parks preciously refreshing whether sitting on a rail fence beside a beautiful lake, or scrambling up a trail on Acadia mountain, gazing at the truly blue haze in the Smokies. Thank you, Teddy Roosevelt, John Muir and the others who gave us these treasures.
The mid-70s are a surprise! Part of me remains in the 50s -- age, I mean, not decade of 20th century. It's a joy ride, new experiences land in my lap and I've become a better quilter, poet, writer than I expected. It's a rich life for a person never rich financially. Hey, this is what the mid-70s are like!