Friday, March 14, 2014

Hampton Park

Clark is off listening to some blue-grass music and I am luxuriating at home.  Today was sunny and beautiful- not a cloud in the sky.  The Low Country is finally thawing after a bizarrely cold and icy winter.  
This morning we visited "our park" (we refer to two parks as "our parks"- Charlestowne Landing and Hampton Park) and saw the first fat alligator of the season.  We don't have loads of freshwater in the area, but where there is freshwater, there are also gators.  They have become quite charming to me after a great deal of shouting and gnashing of teeth.  My Floridian likes all kinds of creatures-- snakes and alligators among them-- so I have had to grow more comfortable with both.  Living in Zambia, every human being I knew was terrified of crocodiles, but as it turns out the crocodile and the alligator are quite different.  Alligators are shy and generally uninterested in eating human beings, so I have made my peace.

Tonight I took a walk through Hampton Park at sunset.  It is Friday night, so I practically had the place to myself.  It was just me, the new statue of Denmark Vesey, throngs of birds, and this one guy I see once or twice a week when I walk the park.  Tall, narrow, and slightly hunched, this man always has an enormous staff draped across his shoulders where two small dogs are 'yoked' via long leather straps.  I heard him before I saw him.  He tends to sing unintelligible operatic words when he thinks he is alone.

I am glad Clark and I live downtown.  We live in a neighborhood called "Wagener Terrace", which is quite diverse- ethnically, socioeconomically.  My place of work is incredibly homogenous, so I find it refreshing to live in a place where folks don't necessarily look or sound like me.  Makes me miss the NYC subway system-- the great equalizer-- my favorite image of the kingdom of God on earth.

Here's wishing you a lovely spring weekend. May it feel like spring indeed.  

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