Tuesday, November 3, 2009
This huge culvert links our side of the ditch to the neighbor's side of the ditch. You can bet it holds a fascination for the kids, and Daddy has let them walk through it while he was standing there with them. They were enthralled with being able to stand up in a pipe and walk under the road. Of course, worrying-Mom had misgivings about letting them near it. Teach-'em-how-to-handle-situations-Dad made sure they kept their footing on dry spots, showed them how to tell how deep the water is with a stick, and explained how all the water running off the fields ends up in the neighbors' ditch and then flows through to our ditch. So, the Mom held her breath, let them learn, made extra noises about never coming to the ditch without a grownup, and then scurried down the rocks and into the tunnel. The giggles exploded at the sight of Mommy straddling the running water and scooting along to the opening to peer out at the water! Then, ohmygosh, Mom swung around the edge of the pipe and climbed up the rocks to our side of the ditch.
You know, I let my kids do lots of things, and I am proudest of them when they think independently. . .and yet, I'm always finding myself telling them to not do something because "it's too dangerous" or "look how you're going to get hurt if you fall from there." The culvert is a case in point. If I only had to worry about myself, then I would've been in that culvert in a flash (without the above mentioned hesitations), checking out the different textures of the worn metal, watching the pattern of the flow of water, dipping a hand over the edge, enjoying the sounds until a car passed over and startled me. I took this picture this morning, long after the swells of rainwater flooding the ditch over the past week have receded. The bricks and old hunks of concrete that have been jammed into a makeshift retaining wall around the pipe are full of intrigue. The colors are subtle rusts and grays, with a smidgeon of barely perceptible purples smattered here and there. The culvert itself begs me to get closer and take some closeups of the myriad textures as the sun lands on them. Is it any wonder that I want to clear out a small spot under the trees lining the ditch, a sitting spot with just enough room for a chair?
When even a lowly piece of infrastructure makes for inspiration, boredom can never be an option!