Walk with me. I need to share something that has been bugging me.
First stop, the bedroom window:
Now, let’s see what’s on the other side of the screen, shall we?
At the risk of being too cryptic, my theme today is damage, willful or otherwise. Of course the kittens aren’t intentionally wrecking the screen. The caterpillars and the wild canaries are enjoying a hearty meal, nothing more, and we have enough to share. Actually, I grew the dill for the wildlife it would attract rather than for any culinary purpose.
Let’s move on, shall we? Follow me to the park at Cobalt Lake – home of the ball diamond, splash pad, and tennis courts. The star attraction, in my humble opinion, is the mini-putt golf course. Each of the eighteen holes features a model of a historic Cobalt building or mining-related artifact. My neighbour, Jane Klaassen took the following images when she played a round of golf last year, and while walking past the year before.
You will note the weeds that have sprouted along the fairway. This golf course was looking tired. When we played earlier this year, besides the usual designed hazards, we had to contend with quack grass and other assorted foliage that made for unwanted challenges.
Fortunately, two Cobalters, Kyle and Mirianna, along with their children stepped up and spent several long hours reclaiming the greens. This summer, they hauled out bags and bags of weeds and tidied up the site. The transformation was astonishing. Whenever Kyle had time to spare, he would open the course to the public.
Let me show you. Here are Jane’s before, and my after shots. Can you see the difference?
A week or so ago, I heard about the vandalism via social media. Apparently, unknown persons, under cover of darkness, found themselves compelled to climb the chain-link fence and trash the golf course. The park is not lit at night, but folks from the other side of the lake reported seeing flashlights dancing around near the mini-putt.
When I heard the news on Facebook, I used the “angry” emoticon to express my disgust. But it felt odd. An exaggeration. Since then, I’ve been thinking about vandals, and kids, and maturity and doing what comes naturally. I thought that my anger had softened. I was ready to take the “whaddya gonna do” stance. The “kids will be kids” position, like the kittens, they test the limits. Or like the birds and the caterpillars, they have an appetite and don’t consider their actions outside of satisfying it.
Today, I decided to finally pay a visit to the park to see the damage for myself. As I walked toward it, I realized I was holding my breath. But I let it out in one explosive, “The fuckers!” when I saw that all but two metal models were gone!
I learned from Mirianna that the situation wasn’t as dire as I had thought. Fortunately, the damage was limited to upturning the models. Later, authorities removed them out of harm’s way.
It’s hard to say, but if the buildings had been wrecked, I don’t think that the town could find the will, certainly not the financial resources to rebuild.
And what about Kyle and Mirianna? Will they be compelled to manage the course next summer? After all of that time and effort in the hot sun, only to have it trashed? How are they going to explain it to their children?
I don’t know that I could.
Categories: In Other News