The alarm went off and I groaned. Though I am an early riser, the fireworks in the neighborhood were still going off sporadically after I went to bed at midnight. Last night as I curled up in my bed, wide awake at hour four of the pyrotechnics extravaganza, I know that I crossed my fingers that Meijer would not have a fire sale on fireworks today, thus prompting everyone to scurry back to retrieve another booty of boomers. Well, Independence Day only comes once a year and we have plenty to celebrate in our country don’t we? Despite my lack of sleep, I still managed to get myself up, fed and dressed and on the road by 8:00 a.m. How lucky we are to have still another stellar day smack dab in the middle of our long holiday weekend. On this Saturday morn it was especially quiet and I appreciated the calm and still after the noisy boom, boom, boom last night. As I walked through the neighborhoods, I noted windows or screen doors were open, ushering in the cool, fresh air and giving the A/C a much-needed rest. The only sounds were the warblings of a song bird or two and a downy woodpecker drilling the heck out of a nearby tree. The echoes from his efforts were reverberating throughout the subdivision each time he started anew. As I neared the church on Electric Street, out of the corner of my eye I noticed ants aplenty and they seemed to congregate at about every other sidewalk crack. Well, it’s better they gather here than at your picnic table later on today. Keeping my head down, I carefully picked my way around a score of massive ant hills, and I noticed, with interest, just how many sidewalks were scorched from firecrackers. There must have been quite a show by the church, and there was no doubt that fireworks were the culprit for the black burn marks on the concrete, as spent firecrackers littered the sidewalk and lawn. Canisters, unravelled cardboard tubes and metal pieces were strewn on bushes as well, where they landed after shooting up into the air, exploding, slowly fizzling, then dying, flinging their colorful wrappers everywhere. Hopefully, the embers did not follow suit. I heard many warnings yesterday for sparkler safety which surprised me because as a toddler I clearly remember taking sparkler sticks from my father and holding them almost ‘til they burned to a stub. I was never burned but I would have thought sparklers were pretty harmless.
I wasn’t sure where I wished to have my feet take me this morning, so I planned to walk down to River Drive and there I would decide whether to try Council Point Park again or return to the Detroit River by wending my way all the way down Emmons Boulevard to Wyandotte. Well … eeny, meeny, miny, moe … I opted for Wyandotte. As I crossed the Ecorse Creek bridge, I paused to scan the water for ducks and geese – nope, none to be found. I guess they were waiting especially for me last Monday and that’s it for now. I continued down through Wyandotte, enjoying the peace and quiet and shade from the tree-lined street. By now the sun was warming things up, so I shucked off my long-sleeved shirt, and was more comfortable in just a tee-shirt, enabling me to pick up my pace. No trains in sight, so I tromped over the railroad tracks, and was down at the corner of Emmons and Biddle by 8:30 sharp. I shaded my eyes with my hand and gazed down to the Detroit River as I watched a large power boat with an American flag on the aft end flapping in the breeze. The boat blitzed past a handful of Biddle Avenue backyards and I lost sight of it. I then decided to stroll along Biddle to get a better vantage point of the water. One block later, I found myself in Ecorse, having arrived at the picturesque waterfront scene at the River’s Edge Marina. I stood on the bridge overlooking the marina and watched a long freight train rolling by, high above the many boat wells and adjacent to the nearby residences, and that scene is what is pictured above. The early morning sun was glinting off the water and caused a sparkling effect. Several boat owners were gathered on the docks, their fishing gear loaded on board, and they were readying their boats to just hop in and pull away. A young man in a turquoise paddleboat suddenly appeared from under the bridge I was standing on. I watched him until he became just a speck on the water. He was multi-tasking all the while, with feet furiously working those pedals and drinking from a mug held in one hand while the other hand grasped a fishing pole. All these guys dreamed about lazy mornings on the water just like this day, all through that long, cold Winter. Well, this landlubber stayed ashore enjoying the ambiance of the marina for about a half hour, then the sun got powerfully strong all of a sudden, so I departed to begin my 2 ½-mile trek home.