Seeing Things in New Light
One of the reasons that I like to travel is in order to see and experience new things. It's easy to forget that there are still a lot of new things to discover close to home.
There's a town just east of Lodi called Poynette, which isn't that different from Lodi. The two towns have a lot in common. Most of the people in both towns are conservative Republicans. Both have a Piggly Wriggly grocery store. Both are small towns surrounded by a lot of natural beauty.
However, many people choose to focus on things that separate us.
|Callie and Elvis, barely tolerating each other|
Our schools are better. Our sports teams are better. Those folks are rednecks. These are some of the things I've heard over the years.
This week I went to Pauquette Park in downtown Poynette to start my daily hike. Somehow, despite visiting that park countless times, I never noticed the small stone next to the parking lot.
Huh. Poynette should have been Pauquette, except for someone's bad handwriting. When I got home, I got on the Wisconsin Historical Society website and found out a few things about Mr. Pauquette. He was half-Indian and born in Missouri in 1796. Pauquette moved to Portage, Wisconsin in 1818. For several years he worked for the American Fur Company and operated a trading post. He was fluent in French, English and several Indian languages. Serving as a translator for General Dodge, Pauquette was killed by an Indian in 1836.
Pauquette Park leads to the trailhead for the Rowan Creek Fishery property. It was a beautiful day, so I was concerned that the trail might be more crowded than I liked. As it turned out, I didn't need to worry. Recent rains left significant parts of the trail underwater.
But the trail was better than it looked. Once I tiptoed through the water and mud, the ground rose a bit and was mostly dry. We didn't see another soul during the entire hike. We did see something else that I have never seen before, despite hiking this trail dozens of times.
In my defense, there was no sign or stone to mark the spot. There was an unmarked path that I probably never noticed when the foliage was full. Even with the leaves fallen, I almost didn't see it, blended in with the trees.
I have no idea what the story is with this wood carving in the middle of the woods of this public property, but finding it made my day. We hung out for a bit there and then here.
Another great day for a hike.