The Bridge and I

18 Jun

In my last post, Loving My Small Town, I chatted about small town life. The new “big” thing her in our town is walking the bridge. People do it all day and even into the night-time. Our friend DiVoran’s family did it as a Father’s Day outing and is sharing her experience today

My Take

DiVoran Lites

One of the entertainments for our family Father’s Day celebration was to walk the bridge. Now I just heard about this new small-community attraction last spring and I had not yet experienced it. What’s the big deal about walking across the new bridge, I thought. Bill and I walked across the old one once. We passed the bridge tender who was doing his homework while waiting to open and close the bridge for a good-sized or tall-masted boat. No big deal.

I did not, however, want to be left out of a community phenom and I definitely did not want to miss a family outing, so I got my sun-hat and my walking shoes and we headed for the river in two cars. Bill didn’t get to go because of his barking dogs. (That’s an old saying for sore feet.)

Even though it was June and supposedly hot weather, a steady, cool wind blew puffy white clouds in an otherwise clear blue sky. First, I walked with my daughter-in-law and we had a chance to talk for the first time in quite a while. We were the tail of a seven person two-by two queue with the seventh, our daughter’s husband, in the lead. Now arches rise high enough that any boat allowed on the river can go under, so we tackled the incline then practically danced down the other side.  On the way, back I walked with my son and W. D. was telling me something about the birds when suddenly I imagined a tribe of natives traveling to their next camp.

I saw the heavily laden travois, smelled the pemmican (does pemmican have an aroma?) and thought of papooses being transferred on their mother’s backs. I could hear the rattle and swish of a people on the move. Everyone in the tribe had a special job and unique gifting. There was the strider ahead, there was the philosopher/ negotiator\explainer who had an equal say in tribe politics and then there were the tall, strong brave and his sister the Indian princess. We had two matrons who worked harder than anyone ought to have to work to help keep everybody clean and fed, and then there was the old crone, which was of course a wanna-be– me. There on the bridge, I knew the ancient joy of belonging that comes mostly in families, no matter how large or how small, how functional or how dysfunctional. Often the people in these families aren’t related by blood, but still by right of love, cooperation, and understanding, they belong to each other.

So that’s what the bridge is all about. I thought. It’s about movement, connection, family, and an airy beauty that represents constant crossovers, with people who care, from one part of life to another.

“God places the solitary in families and gives the desolate a home in which to dwell.” Psalm 68:6

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3 Responses to “The Bridge and I”

  1. Linda Lewis September 24, 2012 at 4:35 pm #

    Beautiful post, DiVoran. I loved you being swept away by thoughts of the natives. Have you visited The Alamo in San Antonio? When I went, I sat on a bench in the middle of the courtyard, simply swamped by the energy of all who died there. It wasn’t scary or eerie, but I’ve never felt a presence like that before or since. Sometimes history can make a huge impression, can’t it!

    Like

  2. DiVoran June 18, 2012 at 10:41 am #

    I looked up pemmican because it was outlined and blue in the post. I guess it smelled all right, but it doesn’t sound delicious to me–maybe the wedding pemmican, but lard? No thanks. It must be a case of if you’re hungry enough…

    Like

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