Thursday, August 13, 2009

In the Adirondacks, along the Ausable River

Yesterday, the Handsome Husband and I drove north to Keene Valley to visit relatives who were vacationing along the Ausable River.

As readers of yesterday's entry will know, I was in a sombre mood. Spending a peaceful day with good people in a beautiful place has helped restore some balance.

After lunch, we walked a bit, at a sedate pace so that the lovely but aging Molly-the-dog would not be too taxed.

This cool rainy summer has been wonderful for
wildflowers. We passed fields full of purple crown vetch.

Goldenrod and ferns thrive
where there are pockets of soil in the rock ledge.

Along the river, woodland sunflowers were in bloom.

Purple flowering raspberry flourished along the roadside.
The forever wild Adirondack Park is a special place and I feel very blessed to live so near to it.
But all is not peaceful in upstate New York these days.
Just west of where we were yesterday is Fort Drum. It is the home of the 10th Mountain Division (light infantry). Many of their soldiers are currently deployed in increasingly dangerous Afghanistan. According to information available at the Fort Drum website, twenty 10th Mountain soldiers have died this year.
This coming Monday in New York State, once more flags will be flown at half-staff. On August 17, 2009, they will honor another Fort Drum soldier, Specialist Matthew Swanson, who died at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland on August 8, 2009 after being injured in a vehicle rollover accident in Logar Province, Afghanistan on July 19th.

Specialist Matthew Swanson was from Lake Forest, California, and was assigned to the 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum.
Spc. Swanson was 20 years old.
May he rest in peace.