Sorry about the radio silence. I went on a lovely retreat with fiber friends for most of last week, and I've been waiting for a good time to take some rooster pictures for you. I headed out late this morning with camera in hand, and though it was a gloomy, overcast day, I think you can get a good look at my local park.
This is one of my favorite places on earth. Lafreniere Park, a half-mile from my front door by foot. It has small lakes, lots of trees, a 2-mile walking/running trail, a waterfowl sanctuary, and plenty of wildlife to fill it. Any given day you can see cranes, seagulls, geese, ducks, swans, chickens, songbirds, squirrels, nutria, rabbits, turtles, cats, and dogs.
As soon as I entered the park, I saw this little family. Mama was teaching the little ones to scratch for bugs, but also to take advantage of the occasional treat thrown by a passerby. In this case, someone had just thrown goldfish crackers on the walk.
The boys were showing off their colors - very handsome.
The seagulls (and various ducks and geese) congregate when they see people with bags of bread - they know they'll get treats.
The wildfowl are safe here - it's "posted" so there's no misunderstanding.
Here's the BIG hill - it's the high point of the park. Remember, it's flatland swamp around here, so we're amazed by any elevation at all. (Having hiked in my beloved Rockies, I am no longer impressed.) You'll note green grass - this is mid-winter in New Orleans. My Canadian friends will recognize some of their geese, wintering here.
I love this place. I used to run 3 miles every morning before work, watching the sunrise on my way back home. That was before Katrina devastated the area (and the park, which was used for a dumping ground for all the refuse cleaned up out of the surrounded neighborhoods, and wasn't restored to its former use for a year). Vagrants moved in and made pre-dawn runs unsafe. Since I had to be at work shortly after dawn, my morning jaunts ended. I lost my focus, my fitness, and my sanctuary.
But now... I've got the time. I'm takin' the park back. I'm looking forward to spending an hour every morning in this place of peace and healing. Walking now, but soon I'll run freely again.
Earlier, though. Too many people at 10:00am.