Help! "I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!" These words from an iconic TV commercial come to mind as I walk slowly down the dock. To my right I see one end of the aged old pier of one of my neighbors has fallen into the river. As a young midshipman at the Naval Academy, we were drilled daily with the expression, “Time, Tide and Formation wait for no man! I am now shoving off Sir! “ Time indeed has taken its toll on those old timbers.
Life on the Broward continues in spite of Times attack on the once strong pilings that once held these boards over the waters below. December's cool dry winds are now upon us and the marsh grass is turning golden brown. The Red-winged Blackbirds gingerly skip from reed to reed eating the dwindling seed from the tops of the grass. A Northern Harrier makes its annual appearance. I only catch a brief glimpse this year as the female Harrier swoops low over the marsh looking for a lingering blackbird breakfast. Alas this year I miss a photo op though, this illusive acipitor is just too far away for the lens to capture. Time has robbed me like it did the pier. Oh well, perhaps I will see it again next year. As the sun begins to peek over marsh, one of the Pied-billed Grebes swims around the island and heads in my direction. Aware and wary of my presence, it keeps an eye on me as it swims by the dock. Its reflection seems to keep an eye on me too.
Some days I just feel like that old pier. It’s once strong boards and beams stood proudly over the Broward. Now they are sitting in the muddy tide of life, as time and nature takes its toll. Then I look upstream and see those cute little Pied-billed eyes keeping watch on me. I take comfort that I know someone else is also watching over me too. Be blessed. Harry