December 1, 2017
Tom Writes . . .
Grand Ledge Dam to Jones Road Bridge in Eaton County
Training for the Winter Canoe Olympics
We really like our canoe, and we really like our river, and, we are couple of old guys with flexible schedules. So, we went out on the cold water, and had a great time today.
Today, I got to take the skipper’s seat in the stern, for only the second time in two years. Joe went to the bow, in order to concentrate on photos and videos. However, this time of year yields mostly brown and gray images. We have lots of images, but they are not colorful.
The only colors in our paddle today were blue sky with white mares’ tail clouds, and, when we went ashore, bright red berries on shaggy undistinguished bushes. Plus, of course, our yellow canoe and our bright-yellow foul-weather jackets. The
rest was late-season brown and gray trees, fallen leaves, and water. Water about the color of a squirrel: a little bit grayer than tan.
One thing we noticed was Sycamore trees. These are not the dominant trees in the riverside forest, but, this time of year, their distinctive white bark stands out. I cannot tell you what the bushes with the bright red berries are. Sorry. I was not smart enough to gather some of the berries, nor to take some leaves from the bushes, nor even to take a picture. When I got home, I tried to google red berry bushes, and I looked in my tree book, but Holy Riverside! too many bushes with bright red berries!
These are the sort of red berries Joe’s and my parents used to tell us not to eat. They told us they were poison for kids, even though the birds could eat them. Not poison for birds. Did your parents tell you the same thing? Joe and I never ate these kinds of berries, and we never died (yet). Did you ever eat them? Did you die?
Writing of birds: We saw one of our totem Great Blue Heron, Kingfishers, and Blue Jays.
We wondered whether fishing was allowed this time of the year, and we missed our friend Dave Miller. Dave would have known about the fishing rules.