Wednesday, April 9, 2014

A BUSY, DIVERSE DAY FULL OF DISCOVERY

Every now and then I get a day that is packed full of great experiences that keep me so busy the day is over before it started.  Today was such a day.
The old barns seem to keep appearing and I wonder if there is no end to them.

I headed out early in the truck to The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) to get all the tires replaced on the truck.   Even that was interesting as I had to drive to Strawberry Plains where the TDOT I use is located.  Its a nice ride and the folks are great at that garage.  I was on my back to the river by noon and just went on over to Indian Cave boat ramp to start my shift for the afternoon.

My almost daily check on the eagles indicated that all is well at the nest.  Hey - its important.
I pulled down to Indian Cave on the river and my very good friends Bill and Clarissa were out sitting in the sun and I stopped to say hey and visit for awhile.  Clarissa brought out one of the tiny wolf/hybrid pups.  Check out this little guy's eyes.



Isn't he precious?  How gorgeous he is and what a magnificent dog he will grow to be!  But then, look at his little brother.  Wow!

Oh, great mamma dog - you have some mighty pretty children!



The folks with the puppies are also the curators of the Indian Cave and Bill and Clarissa's daughter took me down to the cave for a quick look.  I had to be at the river anyhow so this cave visit fit in well with my afternoon.  I couldn't stay long but my mouth dropped when I saw how beautiful this area is.
 The trail to the cave passes this old grist mill that was driven by the diverted water from a stream that runs along the bottom of the cave for miles. 
The stairway above leads to the top of the grist mill for purposes of servicing the mill.
Below is the stone waterway that was created to carry the water to the mill back in the day.
 The water flowed vigorously behind that retaining wall to the wheel on the mill.  Long ago the water flowed freely but today the earth has fractured beneath the waterway and the cold flow is now diverted into the earth only to emerge out on the shoreline of the river.

 That flowing viney material is kudzu and it will be greener than green very soon.  It's very pretty but oh so insidious.

 This area located just outside the cave entrance can only be described as charming.
But, look at the cave entrance.

I knew I didn't have much time but when I saw this big iron door I was committed to go on in and at least taste the adventure that awaited there.

 My little camera was totally inadequate in here.  The flash was too wimpy and I needed more adjustment.  The Canon with a 135 mm lens would be the next camera to enter in here.  The water could be heard trickling and babbling over and around rocks and rills. wow!
There wasn't much use continuing on without a satisfactory camera in hand.  I needed to get to Nance Ferry and rather than continue and "not" take photos - I elected to hold off until next time.
 And 20 buried men yelled, "there's a light up above and scrambled from a would be grave."
Just look at this.
The grounds are covered with scenes like this.  I checked out a patio that has some religious history that I won't comment on until I know more.  It is indeed a beautiful place and very old.

 Look at that chair closely.
I think I fit in here just fine.  I like it here very much.  I can dig this.
The river view is nice too.
A statue in the likeness of the Virgin Mary sits in front of the repose.  A statue of Christ sat on the right at one time but has fallen into despair after the rock beneath it eroded and was washed into the river.
Look closely below and you can see the Christ figure.
A few other really sincere things were said between myself, Bill and Clarissa that I'll always cherish and will keep to myself.  It's not often I like someone I meet so quickly.  These two are the finest.  
 This is an Indian pipe that Bill hand carved with his own hands and Clarissa adorned with bead-work and decoration - and they gave it to me.


 I am truly humbled by this gift.
I had to get on with my run along the river and quickly departed.  These folks made me feel good and I'll be forever thankful for their friendship and, they certainly have mine.
One last look at the eagles and guess who I ran into.
 The devil dog was trotting down the side of the road and took off into the brush as I approached.  He does look mysterious hiding behind the shrubbery. 
So, that was my day and I really enjoyed it.  I'm off the next two days and may take a trip to Scona Lodge.  We'll see.