December 2012

I go there to fish, but there is a short trail that can be fun. The last few years, I've been going to Montauk for a week around Labor Day. It makes for a very relaxing week. I fish a little, read a little, nap a little. This year, I made a point of just walking around the park. I hiked the official trail, but I also just walked around, usually in the afternoon, when the fishing was slow.

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In the Ozarks, history and nature each contain the other, each depending on the other. It is, I suppose, convenient to think about them as separate things. "History" is the thing people do to the landscape. They chop down trees, cut roads, build houses, clear pastures, run fences. And the things people do leave marks on the landscape, marks as clear and obvious as any written text. The world is a kind a parchment, and we are the pen the marks it. On the other hand, "nature" is everything else, the things that happen when we aren't around.

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A big area, with miles of old woods roads. The Conservation Department closes most of the trails in the area during hunting season, although it's still possible to get a good, long hike through an area where hunting is off-limits.

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I've never met Danny McMurphy, but I feel like I know him. Maybe because I've been running into him on the internet for years.

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How does the Cole Porter song go? Something like, "Birds do it, bees do it, even Ozark turtles do it . . . " Or maybe not.

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