Thursday, April 15, 2004


Picture of round lieaf hepatica in April
These delicate little woodland flowers are grown close to the door so I will remember to uncover them in the early spring. They are one of the first plants to get the oak leaves removed.

The blossoms pop up out of the ground in early April and remain curled up and closed just waiting for a beautiful warm, sunny day so they can display their beauty. We had such a day yesterday and today.

The leaves in the picture are the leaves from last year. This year's leaves won't appear until the hepatica is done blooming.

Hepatica grow wild in the Beech/Maple woods of the Kalamazoo Nature Center. Here at Violet Acres they were planted from nursery stock. They are happy here as long as they get a little help pushing aside the oak leaves.

The Dogless Walk in the Park
Sometimes I am just too conscientious, too intent on following the rules.

Last night was a community walk in a public park. Since the weather was beautiful and I'm working on increasing my steps per day, what could be more perfect?

Or was it perfect?

There was information on the internet and an article in the paper. Neither mentioned how long the walk was going to be. A pretty important piece of information to leave out. It wasn't worth driving 20 miles to walk a half mile. I'm not capable of walking more than two miles. I needed to know.

When I wrote to the email contact to ask how long the route was going to be, I also asked if I could bring my dogs.

The reply came back:

"Portage parks allows dogs on leashes except during high density traffic. This will be a lot of people in a small space (trail). A dog could be a safety hazard as we expect lots of children and older people to walk with us."
Makes sense. I can appreciate that dogs might be a hazard.

Mom and I showed up at the park a half hour before the main event stepped off. And guess what we saw?

Dogs, dogs, and more dogs! No one was turning them away. No one was asking that they stay out of the way. There was not a single hint that dogs weren't welcome.

I mentioned to another walker how I was told dogs weren't allowed. She looked at me like I was daft.

"Dogs always walk in this park," she said.

I was so annoyed - annoyed at myself for asking.