Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Was that a Canvasback?

I was walking around Antrim Lake today when I thought I saw a Canvasback.

At the end of the first of my three laps I looked to my left at the water and saw a beautiful red-headed duck swimming among the green-headed Mallards. Though I grew up knowing how to identify a variety of ducks, I'm sad to say my skills have severely declined since my Dad died and I no longer have anyone quizzing me on a regular basis. And I was walking so "fast," I didn't get a very good look at it other than to see the red head. On the next lap the duck was gone. After consulting some online sites once I got home, I have my doubts about what it was. I do know that if it was a Canvasback it would be pretty special, but it was probably just a red head.

And that is one of the reasons I like to walk at Antrim. You never know what you will see. Sometimes I'll run into the local Team in Training group, today it was a group from the Army (reserves maybe?). There are often adult softball games, little kids playing soccer and tennis players.

There are lots of walkers, runners and bikers -- unless there is the threat of rain, like today. (It was less crowded today.) When the dog walkers are behaved, like today, I don't mind the dogs. In fact, I enjoy watching the dogs swim, as long as they don't shake water on me.

And the change of seasons is great here! When you come here often, you see a lot of subtle season changes. For example, today I observed tons of buds on everything and the air smelled like spring. In the fall, it is fun to watch the leaves change just a little bit every day. And winter and summer are just different every day with the temperature swings we have in Ohio.

There are a couple of bad things about Antrim. 1) Parking is limited. 3) Cars have been broken into lately. 2) When there are not many people, it isn't especially safe for women. You really need to watch your surroundings and keep an eye out for creeps.

Despite the negatives, I'm glad I have this little lake in the city that makes it feel as if I've gone somewhere special to walk.


Today's walk was 3.6 miles. I parked close to the path for a change so I could get to the car quickly if the rain came down hard. And because of the threat of rain, I was WAY over dressed. Ended up that it sprinkled on and off, but that was it. My long pants and water resistant jacket were unnecessary. Yet, I got too hot -- again.

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