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Out and About – Week of August 18th

A good way to remain sane, might be to meet with a therapist on a regular basis. You know, someone that you can unload your troubles on, or just vent to. Sometimes you might receive some pretty good advice, and sometimes the advice is not worth giving a second thought. I see one of my therapists about every three weeks and usually spend about twenty minutes exchanging thoughts. It’s really great and, when I leave, I feel refreshed and feel like a new man. My session usually costs about twenty dollars, which isn’t a bad deal at all, especially when my therapist throws in a haircut at no extra charge.

I met with my therapist last Thursday and mentioned that I had recently discovered the joy of reading. She was surprised that I wasn’t an avid reader because, after all, I do this column every week, so I should naturally enjoy reading. I mentioned that I have never enjoyed reading and do so only when I’m assembling something or looking for something new and tasty on a menu. Anyway, my wife, an avid reader, gave me two books for my birthday, and I’m really enjoying the adventure of reading and learning something new. I enjoy biographies, and am almost finished with John Glenn, My Memoirs. Who knows what book will be next? But I’m looking forward to spending more time reading. My wife is very happy with that. I might do some catching up on my stack of magazines. Who knows what ideas I might get for a future column from several of those?

Back in the Fifties, we periodically had relatives join us for Sunday dinner. They lived in and around Elkhart, Indiana, so it wasn’t too far to travel for a wonderful meal and a chance to visit. Sometimes we’d visit my grandmother in Elkhart, but whoever traveled where, the visits made Sundays special. The visits lasted until around four in the afternoon, at which time we escorted them to their cars, gave everyone a hug, and bid them a fond fare-thee-well. Every so often, my mother would suggest that we all go and visit the Kellogg Rock Garden, located just east of the Hoffman Street and Portage/Buckhorn Road intersection. We’d drive separately, so that our Hoosier relatives could leave for home from there.

Kellogg Rock Garden was quite the attraction. It featured a waterfall or two and several paths to follow that would take you down near the Portage River. There was a little concrete bridge, big enough for one person at a time. And who could ever forget the abundant beautiful foliage? My dad captured all of this with his 35mm movie camera.

About a year ago, my wife and I happened to stop by that property on an autumn afternoon. We parked our golf cart in Pat O’Malley’s parking lot, then set off to see what was there. The property had become considerably overgrown over the past fifty years. The waterfalls were still there, minus the water that, at one time, gently flowed over them. The little bridge was still there, but we had to carefully look for it. We couldn’t go too far into the property, because of the overgrowth. All that was really left were the memories of those days, when this would be the perfect place to bid the relatives a safe trip back to Elkhart.

While out riding on my scooter recently, I decided to swing by this one-time attraction. To my amazement, I found that a great deal of the overgrowth had been cleared. It really made a difference, which reminded me of an idea that my wife once had. She had a dream, and I’m pretty sure the dream still exists, that it would be great if a couple of civic organizations, such as Lions and Rotary, would work together to make this property a place worth visiting again. Wouldn’t it be great to have colorful vegetation there to replace the overgrowth that, without proper care, will grow back again? Property owner Pat O’Malley is responsible for the clearing of the overgrowth, and I thank him for doing that. Pat mentioned that it would take a lot of money to restore the waterfalls. We both agreed that just adding some color to the site would be nice enough. Clearing some of the paths would be fantastic.

See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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