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Monday, February 14, 2011

Still In The Spring Mood

This morning I woke up and knew that I needed to give Bazinga a bath. Still being in the mood for spring I really wanted to be outside instead. I figured, since he needs a bath anyway why not get him extra dirty. I gathered up an old towel, a water bottle and Bazinga's leash and off we went. It was cloudy and dreary in Rossville. I decided to head to Indiana. Shades State Park is one of my favorite places. As we drove out of Illinois the clouds started breaking up. Small patches of blue sky started peaking through the gray. I felt myself daring to hope that once I reached my destination that the clouds would be gone. As we reached the narrow winding road that lead to the park, the clouds behind us, the sun shone through. I felt  a weight lift from my shoulders. It felt good to see the sun and be out of Illinois even if just for the afternoon.

We got out of the van and Bazinga started quickly sniffing about to see what this new place was. We walked down the path and turned toward The Devils Punch Bowl. We continued on the wooden board walk that was covered with snow. I was excited to see the green fern breaking through the icy snow. The strength of spring pushing it's way to the surface

We turned a corner and found that the stairs going down into the Punch Bowl were covered with ice. I thought for a few minutes about turning back but decided to venture forward. I crushed the ice with my foot and pushed it away with each step. When I got to the bottom I was glad I did. If we had turned back we would have missed out on this.  You can't tell by the photo but those icicles were four feet tall. 

Bazinga was enjoying himself investigating every little piece of moss and speckle of dirt. His fur becoming blacker with every step.
The evidence of melting surrounded us. Every rock dripping water into the creek below, that itself was working very hard to become liquid again. The sounds of the melting echoed through the little canyon.

We both enjoyed our walk immensely. We would come upon obstacles that made me think it was time to turn back. We slowly found our way around them and pushed forward. Finally though, toes cold and legs tired I decided it was time to head home. 

I had been happily photographing our short journey. I paid little attention to the path we took to get there. 
When I turned to head back, I looked up. Suddenly, the extremely wise words of Forrest Gump rang loudly in my head. "Stupid is as stupid does." 

I realized, while it may have been tricky getting down into this beautiful bit of nature, getting back out may be even trickier.  I thought about the fact that no one knew where I was. I left the house on a whim and didn't think there was any reason to bother Willie at work to let him know where I was going. Maybe not so smart of me. With a few slips and a slight turn of the ankle we found our way back to the wooden stairs. I only ended up on my bum once. It bruised my ego more than my body.

Photos taken and lessons learned we made our way back to the car. Bazinga was covered with dirt and grime. Luckily, I had thought ahead enough to bring the old towel. Before we got in the car I gave him a drink of water, which helped to clean his chin a little anyway. I opened the door and put him on the towel. Our little adventure over, he slept all the way home.

PS... Ignore the date on the photos. My camera decides to change the date on me every once in a while. Since the snow is everywhere, it obviously is not July. And I have not been able to perfect my time machine yet.