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Tammy's All Things History

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Nature

What’s happening? The Canadian Goose Brigade


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This morning, I went for my daily walk. I recently moved to Michigan from North Carolina and staying in temporary quarters until we can find and purchase our dream home. So, as I walked along, exploring my new digs, I came upon the town center. There, I saw for the first time a path that goes along the water and surrounds a park for the city‘s recreational events. The trail is an asphalt top and is parallel to bushes and shrubs that grow magnificently next to a giant water source. It provides a small nature preserve that supports an ecosystem. I decided to avert the trail because I am a wild animal magnet. In the past, I have walked along trails in woods and experienced foxes, deer and wild and feral cats. Looking at the bushes, I figured there probably is an animal around because of the water source. I did not want to have an encounter this morning without a walking stick.

As I walked away from the trail and onto the grassy field next to the path, I saw the Canadian Goose Brigade coming my way. Neck was stretched and curiosity was all over their little faces which were directed at me. I decided to point my GPS away and re-route myself. I did not want to have to challenge them and I did not want them to test me. Because I had wandered into enemy territory, I picked up two small weapon (stones) and armed myself in case their commander insisted a recon of me. As I walked briskly in another direction, I looked over my shoulder and saw the geese heading slowly and calmly toward the water. I was grateful. I did not want to tussle with a Canadian Goose and especially now. There is sure to be a mom and trail of gosling with her and that would be even more dangerous to bring attention to the fact that I am in their environment and they are in mine.

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History on Saturday: The Smithsonian’s Exhibit of Earl Shaffer and the Appalachian Trail


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Earl Shaffer, courtesy of The National American History Museum

Summer is for adventure. So, gather around the computer for an online tour of The Smithsonian’s Exhibit of Earl Shaffer and the Appalachian Trail. As documented in the exhibit, Shaffer was a tired veteran of World War II and sought solitude in the mountains to clear his head and plan his future. I know that feeling, having retired from the US. Army myself. Veterans tend to want some peaceful quiet and privacy after military life. As Shaffer embarked upon his journey, he documented what he saw. This was to share his information with folks back home.

Fortunately, his writings have been preserved so future generations can be further inspired by his perseverance at innovation. He took what he had learned in the army and put it to good use with his explorations. Who knew that a small idea would lead to so much success with his trail blazing. He encouraged folks to be brave and bold and to seek out adventures in America’s nature preserves. At the same time, he educated people about some of the beauty nature had to offer and avenues for further exploration.

See the exhibit here: http://americanhistory.si.edu/documentsgallery/exhibitions/appalachian_trail_1.html

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