Search

A Morning Rankle Through The Massapequa Preserve

June 23rd, 2014 by Magdalena Tabor

As I’ve oftentimes mentioned, I cannot stress enough the healing powers of nature. It seems that whenever I’m out of sorts, I seek some quiet wooded glen for solace and comfort. It never fails to bring me to myself. Ideally, the best places for this are not always within easy access of suburban Long Island, at least not within walking or biking distance and so we utilize what we have. Trouble is, so does the rest of the populace which defeats the whole purpose.
I set out at 9:40 am on a Monday morning but to my utter dismay, it still wasn’t early enough. Already, there was the usual gamut of characters that should have been at work today but, like me, decided otherwise.
The Massapequa Preserve is a stunningly beautiful natural habitat placed smack dab in the middle of a densely populated neighborhood, but you wouldn’t know it once ensconced inside its wild array of canopied overgrowth, streams, ponds, bogs and wetlands, hidden pockets of abundant wildlife with only a narrow 2 lane bike path separating you from it. There are dirt trails that lace through it as well,massapequa preserve but for the most part, it seems people take to the black top.
My morning began with a sweet little duck family at the fishing bridge. Up a little further, 3 pairs of lovely snow white swans were grooming themselves at the creek’s edge, close enough to reach out and touch. One of them executed a very nice backwards leg stretch. (I must remember to ask the name of his Yoga instructor on my way back when he’s not so busy.) Not long into my trip, a duo of loud mouth New Yawkahs broke the silence with aimless chatter in their brisk walk to tight buns. It was apparent that this was their ultimate goal in life, oblivious to all else with specially devised outfits to heighten the effect. Thankfully, they soon dissolved into a bend in the road and left me to examine the inhabitants of the pond; another stark white swan and a red winged blackbird that darted into the bushes. It might have been at the strange appearance of a man jogging with a baby stroller while yelling “Bam, da Bam, Bam! Bam da Bam Bam!” I had to crane my neck to make sure there was actually a baby in the stroller to assess the mental stability of the one producing this most unusual sound. There was. Poor kid.
I spied a small brown bunny hopping alongside the path and watched as he (she?) darted into the brush. At a certain distance I about-faced for my return trip and opted to walk with the bike for a change of pace. (Actually my butt hurt.) Apparently, this was considered odd behavior for some, as I was asked by a kindly fellow if I didn’t need asistance with the bike. I politely refused and thanked him. I don’t know why this rankled me, but is there no where in this suburban conglomerate one can disappear and not have to interact with anyone and everyone? I just want to be invisible sometimes. God bless them, Long Islanders are extremely friendly, but must one always feel obligated to greet each passer by with “hello. hi. good morning. hey” or a smile? Then if you don’t look at them you get the feeling they may be offended, snubbed, or slighted and spoil the rest of their day. All right, already…… “Hi.”
I glimpsed the same little brown bunny coming back, although I can’t be entirely certain it wasn’t a different one this time. It wasn’t wearing a name tag, but then again, neither was the other one. It did, however, possess the same spirited hop. Of the same grouping of swans I was absolutely sure; they made slow progress up the creek without a paddle. (They didn’t have one last time.) Strangely, there were no chipmunks in sight. I’m convinced they all took to the mountains some 200 miles away as there were thousands of them frolicking during our last visit there. I can’t say that I blame them…….Bam, da Bam, Bam!

So……….whadayathink? Where do you go to seek solace and seclusion when you want to get close to nature without rubbing elbows with the human species?

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
line01

NYC – From Skyline to Highline

June 18th, 2014 by Magdalena Tabor

I have to thank my cousin Lisa for my introduction to NYC’s Highline which came about two years ago. We work just a stone’s throw NYC Highlinefrom one another in Manhattan and upon occasion get together for “lunch”. Well, the first time we actually ate but from then on we became walking buddies in an effort to work off what eating puts on. She led me down to the west end of the city not far from where we set out, and we proceeded to climb an elevated platform. I had no idea what to expect but was quite simply thrust into a part of the city I’d never known existed. How could this be? I thought I knew it all when it came to the city. But it was quite apparent I’d been out of the loop.
Here was a world where nature extended her hand and literally led you down the city’s primrose path. What was once an expanse of abandoned elevated train track, had been transformed into a private pedestrian walkway; an unexpected vista of ever changing cityscape interspersed with surprise elements of wooded glens, petite lawns, flora/fauna and you name it. As if that weren’t enough, the intriguing view above the city streets free from the intrusion of traffic and blaring sirens, highlight the architectural interest of brand spanking new buildings alongside Victorian Chelsea. With a nod to the city’s talented art community, this montage also injects a gallery of sculptures mounted on the sides of buildings scattered along the way just for good measure; we wouldn’t want you to get bored.
There was a time when this bed of railroad track that lay abandoned for some time, was considered by some just a stretch of wreckage and should be demolished. Nature began to reclaim what was hers and determindly took root there. With a vision not unique to New Yorkers alone, for the idea germinated with the existence of the Promenade PlantĂ©e in Paris, a plan to create something similar was born. But it became something much more; a necessary element of which many city people are deprived. A backyard. A place of respite. A moment’s pause reminding us how important it is to integrate ourselves with nature, even in a place as bustling as NYC. Perhaps even more so because of it.
Children playing on lawns. An old woman in a straw hat biding her time amongst the flowers. People on a leisurely stroll mid afternoon. Others, sunning themselves on newly mown grass in bare feet. Some time in New York City? You betcha. The Highline soars.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
line01