Wednesday, May 24, 2023

At McKenzie Wetland, Best-est Time We Had Together Walking

McKenzie Wetland – how about writing a bit about this nature place and Aurora’s gem? Overload encountered. Often I get a sudden surge of thoughts and a sudden urge to write a blog post. In fact my thoughts are related to our Aurora community and politics mostly; not just municipal politics lately; and many never made it to publishing. I take photographs. Everyone knows that (those who know me of course); and some, quoting her words “they still don’t know why you are here“, referring to last night’s Aurora Town Council meeting. I don’t know either; but I am the last to leave. I stay to the end. I watch everything to the end usually. Pictures, they supplement my thoughts, they dress up my posts when I am out of words. However, I can’t keep up, the summer with my seven year old is a blast. I miss him when he is in school so the two months off is a good time to catch up.

“Memories are the key not to the past, but to the future.” ~ Corrie Ten Boom

Yesterday afternoon we walked to the McKenzie Wetland on St. John’s sideroad. My seven year old didn’t resist this walk. I promised him that we would not go to the other boardwalk on the Nokiidaa Trail Link, near Hadley Grange. We had already biked before lunch. It was our “spending time outside” day; one day of many days this summer. It is unfortunate, but these days technology addiction can easily take over our children, and I am trying hard to balance that. It’s working. “Unplug it” continues to be a buzz word for this summer. “Swimming“, is another.

“He still thinks the best-est is the best.” ~ Corrie Ten Boom

So we walked and enjoyed everything around us. When my seven year old found three spiders he said “this is the best-est time of my life.” When we walked home against the cool breeze and spitting rain, “this is the best-est time of my life,” he said again.

Later he told his father before bed time, “This was the best-est day of my lifeI saw 3 spiders, a White Egret, and turtles.” I was surprised; usually he talks Minecraft, Minecraft and Minecraft. It’s working. Our journey around Aurora continues to be an adventure; lots of beautiful memories. They may overload him for now, but when Matthew is older, I know those memories will never be lost. They will come back in some form or shape.

The McKenzie Wetland

McKenzie Wetland
McKenzie Wetland
McKenzie Wetland

The Caspian Tern

McKenzie Wetland
McKenzie Wetland

I used to do a lot more birding before Matthew was born. The McKenzie Wetland is not the same as it was seven years ago. It will change in years to come. Yesterday I had an opportunity to reunite with one of my favourite fishing birds that always hovers over the McKenzie Wetland (or the Atkinson Park Wetlands, on the south side of St. John’s sideroad), the Caspian Tern. I had limited time, but I was lucky to capture one Caspian Tern fishing near us. So they fish, but they also clean their beaks right after the capture. They fly over the water, just above the surface, and clean their beaks in the water by turning their heads left and right few times. Spectacular view to watch.

Another surprise, a beautiful White Egret in the back. Then a tiny little King Bird sitting on the tree that survived the harsh winter. Mallard ducks always around. A Trumpeter Swan hiding in the back; and a tiny slim figure of a Grey Blue Heron way in the back was graciously looking for his lunch. The McKenzie Wetland once was my prime spot for birding, and perhaps it may be once again.

And here is one of the spiders.

And the overload is now relieved. At the end of the day, I have to do what’s more important now. Family is. Living in the community is. Paying attention to politics is as well; but not first; at least not during the summer.

Anna Lozyk Romeo
Aurora, ON

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