Returning to my roots, er … routes.

During the one-month period of time when Council Point Park was closed by the Mayor of our City, I tried to vary my walking routes. I wanted the steps, but didn’t want to get bored with the routine. Some days I wended my way down to the Park and walked along the fringe, but most days I relied on the tried-and-true route that I walked for two years before discovering Council Point Park in April 2013. I went down Emmons Boulevard, a street full of stately homes and huge trees which form a shady canopy over the street once they leaf out. We had a cold start to May, where temps dipped down to the low 30s a few nights and snow flurries two mornings, so the leaves weren’t out right away.

To the tracks and back

When I first began walking, Labor Day weekend 2011, I increased my steps daily. It was a very hot and humid weekend and I walked one City block in the ‘hood and was pooped. But gradually I increased my steps daily, by adding one more block to my new walking regimen. Soon I was up to a mile, then two miles and I remember I thought I was pretty cool the day I first walked to another city – I walked from Lincoln Park …

… to Wyandotte.

The two cities are separated by a road and footbridge that go over the Ecorse Creek. It is the same Creek that runs through Council Point Park.

Back when this was my daily route, I would often stop at the footbridge because there were ducks or geese paddling around in the water here. In fact, I used to take bread to feed them, until I discovered bread was not good for waterfowl.

Each time I crossed the footbridge in May, I gazed at each side, looking for a sign of life to take photos for my blog.

There were swallows dipping and diving through the trees, over the water and under the footbridge. They never stopped long enough to catch their breath, or so I could take a photo of them. I saw one duck and that was it. A lowly soccer ball floated down the Creek, making it seem a bit desolate.

Once I crossed the bridge into Wyandotte, I aimed to get to the railroad tracks every morning. “To the tracks and back” was my goal.

The train blitzes through around 8:15 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. several days a week. I only cross the tracks on weekends because one time I walked to the marina and stayed there for awhile, then on my way home, a very long train, with 100 plus boxcars, held me up. I’d still have made it back on time for work, but for the fact that the train stopped for some reason. To backtrack and find an alternate way home, would have taken too long, so I just waited it out. So trips to the River’s Edge Marina were relegated to weekends after that episode.

The marina is just a stone’s throw away from the Detroit River, but if I chose to walk all the way to this venue, I was in still another city, Ecorse. This year, due to COVID-19, kayaks and canoes were allowed before motorboats – the marina was not a hoppin’ place the few times I meandered there. I used to enjoy getting there early on a Saturday morning when a few shells were in place and one by one the rowers would step into the shells. The Ecorse Rowing Club is down the street by Dingell Park and many Saturday mornings I’d watch the rowers at the Club getting their exercise as their shells skimmed along the River.

Where else did I go? I also traveled through the nearby neighborhoods to get extra steps in. After mentioning to fellow blogger Laurie about a homeowner who had a metal container of dog treats for owners to reach in and give some to their pooches while on their walks, I tried to recall the cross-streets for that home to visit and take a picture. After wandering around trying to recall the location, I finally found it – yes indeed the dog treat container was still there.

I discovered something else about this home that sits on a double lot. Since the last time I walked past this corner, it looked totally different. Rather than the usual lawn, the homeowners have opted to have a carpet of ivy. And tucked into that ivy, were a bounty of ceramic critters who found their home alongside so many tulips, that I could have tiptoed through them. I’m going to spotlight that home separately.

I’m glad to be back at Council Point Park. Finally, the regular walkers are straggling back – unlike me, they are not on social media and only learned the Park re-opened by doing a drive-by. Slowly the squirrels are returning from begging in the nearby ‘hoods to begging at my feet. Whew – for a few days I feared my crown of “The Peanut Lady” had been tarnished. The peanut-eating birds remain at large but hopefully once the berry bushes are full, they will return en masse to munch on mulberries.

About Linda Schaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, so this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for four decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, though I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too. - Linda Schaub
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49 Responses to Returning to my roots, er … routes.

  1. I love this! I’m definitely the same with trying to vary my walking routes during covid so as I wouldn’t get bored!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Thank you Coffeeandcream. There is a very nice neighborhood just past the Wyandotte city limits where the footbridge is. It is all older homes with beautiful landscaping. I often go at Christmas to see their holiday decor. I returned to this one house on a corner, double lot to take the photo of the dog treats – the morning I was there, the sunlight was streaming on all their tulips, making some look translucent and they have yard ornaments nestled in the ivy – I took a ton of photos and will do that house next week. It was nice to go back as this was my daily trek for two years before I discovered Council Point Park.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. During this lockdown I can’t walk with my walking group so I do neighborhood walks. I live in a beautiful neighborhood especially this time of year. Everything is green and blooming. Makes a difference when you enjoy your walk!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes, it does make a difference. Emmons Boulevard is beautiful in Lincoln Park, but once you cross the bridge into Wyandotte, those are stately homes with beautiful landscaping and lots of flowering trees. I saw lots of those as they all blossomed in mid-May.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Joni says:

    It’s nice you can vary your route – I walk the same old streets! I’m impressed that you started with a block and then kept adding to it….not sure I could do that either!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      This was a route I took nearly daily from September 2011 to April 2013 when I discovered Council Point Park. It was nice going back there again. I had gotten friendly with many people in the neighborhood, one young woman with her two English Bulldogs in particular was very nice. That is how I built up my miles – I’ll bet you could do it Joni. I started on Labor Day weekend and it was very hot and humid, but the more we got into Fall, the more steps I was taking and it was cooler so easier to walk more.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This was fun to read of your various routes. We’d have to drive somewhere if we wanted to walk a different route, so I plan to stay satisfied with our walk to the creek.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      This worked well for the days I did not go and walk near the Park. I was able to rack up miles and return to my old standby. There were always friendly faces on Emmons Boulevard. I wrote about a woman and her pair of English Bulldogs that I used to chat with every morning. And this is the same street where I found all the painted rocks under the tree. I never used to walk to Council Point Park unless I was carrying apples or pumpkins or some type of treats, preferring to walk, but I’ve been taking the car more to give it a little run.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sandra J says:

    It is good to see things getting back to normal. Even for the critters. Wonderful achievment on your walking Linda. Have a great day.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I do like the views of the creek, with the reflections things are slowly getting back to a new normal but I remain cautious and remain at a distance from others when out and about.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Thanks Andy – I like the reflections on the water also. We are moving slow too and today a petition to recall the Governor was filed because people are upset it took so long for businesses to get up and running – I can’t fault her as our State was 3rd worst in the U.S. at one time and we are now 26th I believe. I can see business owners’ point though. I am careful as well Andy, even wearing a mask every time I go to the park and staying away from others. I am taking no chances at all.

      Like

  7. Eliza says:

    Still peanut lady….
    I think that the dog treats are so nice….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Yes, I am happy to still wear that crown Ellie. 🙂 I thought the dog treats was a nice gesture too. A friend of mine lives in a rural town in New York and recently began a walking regimen. On hot days she noticed that people put out containers/bowls with water for the dogs to cool off. That is nice isn’t it?

      Like

  8. Laurie says:

    We are returning to our old routes now during the lockdown too. Bill and I had started doing loops from the rec center because it was easy to stop and get a drink. Now we have to carry water for longer runs.
    Thanks for showing the photo of the house with the dog treats. I should do something like that but we don’t have sidewalks. Maybe I could put something out by the road. There are a bunch of dogwalkers in the neighborhood.

    So glad your “Peanut lady” title has returned to you. Those critters know when they have it good!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Happy to find that for you Laurie and how nice they are still doing that nicety all these years later. My friend lives in Honeoye Falls, New York. It is a little village in Upstate, NY. She recently began a walking regimen and noticed on warm days that people put containers of water/bowls at the end of their driveway for thirsty dogs. She said she never noticed that before – what a nice treat.

      Yes, I was a little worried that the squirrels took off for parts unknown in search of food. It has gotten much better with the squirrels and a few birds have returned to the pathway as well. I could not see them relocating and leaving their nests behind. They probably did go into the neighborhood for treats, found slim pickin’s and saw people on the path again and returned.

      Like

  9. AnnMarie R stevens says:

    Dear “MIss Peanut Lady”………………………………….don’t worry all of those critters at the park will be coming back and beggin for treats at your shoes……………………they have your scent!!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. That is amazing! I would be at the one block range! Lol

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      You might surprise yourself – go just a half-block each day. When things get back to normal (assuming they do eventually), you and your husband have to return to the Metroparks … is his foot better now? (I think it was a foot that was problematic.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • There are no blocks in the country here. His foot gets injured so easily and with diabetes has to be very careful. Unfortunately the road we live on is very busy for about 1/4 mile then it’s safe to walk.

        Like

      • Linda Schaub says:

        Oh that’s too bad Diane. I should have realized you were really in a rural area given the size of your garden, pond, and property from what you’ve shown in your blog posts. That is not great for walking then – maybe not a good idea, or switch to bicycling, but that’s a hassle if you have to load the bikes up, then go somewhere to use them. Easier to just hop on them from home. That’s a real dilemma for trying to have a walking regimen, and sure not worth it for your husband injuring himself. I know having diabetes means you must be very careful with the feet.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. I wonder if the carpet of ivy (instead of grass) is Ground Ivy. We have a lot of it in our yard and i think it’s prettier than plain grass. But the guy who cuts our yard (with a riding-mower) and his grandmother’s yard next-door, hates the stuff. Many consider it to be a nasty weed but i think it — with its purple flowers — is very beautiful. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      I drove by there the other day Tom as I wanted to see if they had any new flowers to go back and take photos and was disappointed as there were no flowers at all. The tulips were just gorgeous when I was there before. It could be ground ivy. I saw no dirt or lawn at all … just ivy. When I do the post, hopefully next week, you’ll probably be able to tell as I was up close. Since it was a corner house, I wasn’t trespassing. I spent two weekends in a row sprucing up the outdoors. I have wild violets in the one backyard garden – they are everywhere. I did not pull any out except those around the downspout. My neighbor had Snow-in-the-Mountain years ago. It grew through the fence and the roots are under lava rock, so I had to just embrace it … it actually doesn’t look bad, especially now, as it has flowers that are delicate like Queen Anne’s Lace – the Black Swallowtails are dancing around those flowers, as is the one hummingbird that I’m hoping to woo to stay so bought a couple of small hummer feeders. I think natural is better. I did the garden with annuals and perennials and that which grows naturally and returns effortlessly now are the best way to go. Hope you are enjoying all your new perennials with the unusual names you planted a few weeks ago.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I just planted more Wiggles and Squiggles hostas today… and i’m getting more cool hostas soon, which i’ll be planting. The frost-leaf-colored lamiums that i planted last year are coming in so beautifully and are now flowering and spreading, some with purple flowers and some with white. Beautiful! Even without flowers, the leaves are a frosty white and look just awesome! I also planted some Jack-Frost perennials this year and a few other types.
        The ground ivy doesn’t bother me in the least, but my Republican-Nazi-like neighbors like to kill what they think “doesn’t belong.” (Maybe i should keep a low profile.) 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        They sound awesome Tom – when I was out back last week, I was looking at the bare spots …I used to be lucky with hostas and lilies for years. I am keeping these names in mind. You’d better keep a low profile, especially if they see you bent over with your macro lens focusing on a bug or two or three. 🙂 Stay safe in your own backyard let alone going out in this crazy world!

        Like

  12. Thank you for taking us on this walk. I particularly loved the green of the creek. Stay safe and healthy, especially as you wander outdoors.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Thank you Markus + Micah – glad to have you tagging along with me on my walk. That Creek is exceptionally pretty when the sun is out with such beautiful reflections. The swallows were often darting in and out of the trees and swooping down near the surface, so close their reflections were in the water too. You stay safe and healthy too. I am happy to wander outdoors. It is a carefree way to forget about the troubles of the world and I welcome my daily walk.

      Like

  13. J P says:

    I kind enjoy getting stopped by trains. Until they stop too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Very true! There are many trains that run that route and it is a double track, so lots of chances to get stopped by the trains either way.

      When I was a kid, whenever we went to Toronto to visit my grandparents, we had to pass over railroad tracks. If we were stopped by a train, my parents would tell me to wave at the engineer in the red caboose. I think of that every time I have to stop for a train now.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. ruthsoaper says:

    This country girl is amazed how quickly you can go from one city to the next. Lovely pictures of the creek.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Ha ha – well in the country, you’d be “walkin’ a country mile” many times over right Ruth? Actually Wyandotte is just about a mile away and then down to Ecorse is 1 1/3 miles from there. Last Thursday we had a march and protesting in Lincoln Park. The agenda was posted in advance. They walked from the Lincoln Park police station to the Allen Park police station, then back to Lincoln Park again – that was a total of four miles. Downriver is a cluster of little cities. How did you do with the storms tonight Ruth? The threat of tornadoes and the hail and potential 70 mph winds wigged me out all day … luckily we had only torrential rain and 45 mph winds at the height of the severe weather – I hear 300,000 people are without power. I know you had it as you are like me and have not got a smartphone.

      Liked by 1 person

      • ruthsoaper says:

        We had the torrential rains as well no hail or damaging winds though. The power is on and It has cooled off so I have turned off the A/c and opened a window. The rain was needed and we won’t have to water for a while now. I’m glad the bad stuff missed you as well.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        We both lucked out Ruth and after hearing the word “tornado” come up yesterday in the weather report, me, the weather worrier began to have angst. I’m glad it cooled off – it was way too hot and too soon. Cool weather through the weekend – yay. Taking it for myself after spending two weekends working in the yard (almost as hard as you work all the time Ruth).

        Liked by 1 person

      • ruthsoaper says:

        Enjoy your weekend. We’ll be looking forward to pictures. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        Thanks Ruth – I have another post for this Friday – I did it last week as I knew I’d be busy in the yard and would make myself behind here and on Reader for a few days (which happened two weekends in a row and still behind). I am going to make the most of this weekend – we are bound to have a rainy weekend sooner or later and now I must devote time to inside.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Congrats on being able to go back to your normal trekking spots. I really like the photos of the water reflections as well as the train tracks! Nice job!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Thanks Shelley – I am going to spotlight that one home on the corner where the dog treats canister was .,, the tulips were out in a morning sun and they had decorated their garden with some fun critters which poked through the ground ivy … I took too many photos to add to this post, so will do it separately.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s cool of those owners. I’ll be back to see what you come up with for a post to elaborate on it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Linda Schaub says:

        Yes, very different what they did with their house – I keep putting the post off as I wanted to do the posts about where I was and what I saw while on hiatus from the Park, then I was back, and now it’s Father’s Day weekend coming up so have some “youngster” posts this week. It will be next week for sure.

        Liked by 1 person

  16. Nancy Ruegg says:

    I, too, am impressed with your discipline, to keep adding more blocks to your walk until you exceeded two-miles. Most mornings I work out in the basement (aerobics and strength-training), in an open, carpeted space. But occasionally we drive to a nature preserve not too far from the house and walk there. And yes, taking the phone along for picture-taking adds to the pleasure. What I really need is a telephoto lens to get some good shots of the pond turtles. They line up on a log, head-to-tail and quite evenly-spaced. You’d think one of the workers arranged them! P.S. Love the photo of the cove and boat docks. Peaceful, but with the promise of happy days on the water ahead!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      Hi Nancy – I worked my way up to more miles that way and it was easier and that way I did not overdo it and get shin splints. Now most weekdays, if I don’t dilly-dally along the way, I can get 4 to 4 1/2 miles done, especially now that the sun is up earlier. I try for 6 miles on the weekends, or at least 5 miles. And, like you said, if you are enjoying your walk and taking pictures, it makes it all the better, so I often rack up miles effortlessly. I was looking for the turtles at the Ecorse Creek in Council Point Park this week because on really hot days, they are already sunning themselves on the half-submerged logs when I get there. in the morning I see them lined up head-to-toe too and always wonder if there is some type of pecking order for doing that. If they perceive you are a threat to them, they all plop into the water at the same time. It makes the walk more fun.

      I am excited as I saw a duck and 9 ducklings this morning – I have been trying for years to get a photo and going to parks near the water and no luck. So today, there was a Mama Duck and her ducklings lined up behind her, walking on the grass. She was on the move and so were they. I could not believe how fast they traveled in the water as I followed them along the Creek banks looking for a place to take a picture of the family.

      That is a very picturesque marina – it is small and when the train goes by in the background, it becomes even more scenic. The rowing club often goes there and get into their shells and then go right to the Detroit River to practice. It is peaceful to watch on a Saturday morning.

      Like

  17. Nancy Ruegg says:

    Kudos for your minimum of 4 miles each day, Linda–very impressive! I’ve wondered about that pecking order among pond turtles myself. Seems like the biggest turtles get to climb on the log first, and the smallest squeezes on the end as best he can! We used to live on a golf course in FL. Out past the backyard fence was a water hazard and a mother duck often raised a bevy of ducklings each spring. I too was amazed how fast they could swim–in a straight line that followed Mama Duck precisely. Such fun to watch!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      The weather was beautiful yesterday and today Nancy – it feels crisp, like a late September day. I’m looking forward to the weekend which will be the same – perfect for walking. The cool weather has kept the turtles out of view … I’ve not photographed them yet this year. Pecking order on the log is an interesting concept.

      Oh you are lucky to see this duck family every year. I can’t tell you happy I was to see this family yesterday with those cute ducklings. It was fun – I’ve not looked at the photos yet, but will do this weekend and hope they came out okay. I will do some baby animal pictures posts next week for Father’s Day week. I took photos of a baby bunny this week too – haven’t seen them yet either. We had a lot of clover but the grass cutters mowed it the other day, so the bunnies will be scarce for a while again.

      Like

  18. You must have seen so many beautiful places since you began your love of walking and documenting them all. I love the idea of the dog owner leaving treats for passing dogs. Such a kind thing to do ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Schaub says:

      I am happy to return to Council Point Park again Zena, but it was interesting to see my old routes, and say “hi” to a few people who remembered me from my pre-Council Point Park days. I remember years ago thinking this was the kindest thing to do for neighborhood dogs, then a friend of mine from high school recently took up walking and lives in a rural area. On hot days, she said the homeowners leave dishes of water and a container filled with water so people’s dogs can get refreshed on their walk.

      Like

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