Monday, May 20, 2013

Bloomin' Beautiful

Can ya smell the lilacs?

We're definitely entering one of the most beautiful, fragrant times of the year, and I was lovin' it with my camera yesterday.

Some of the flower scenes were shot alongside old HWY 10 on the once-scary Denton Curves.  

As a child, I'm pretty sure that I shut my eyes in the back seat while whoever was driving maneuvered the death-defying roadway overlooking Lake Pend Oreille.

I'm also sure some people died there cuz it's so hard NOT to look at the lake, but those curves were tricky.  One look at the lake, and you could be taking your final look at the ground far below.

At least we thought that was the case.

I first sat behind the steering wheel and drove the Denton Curves as Forest Service employee back in the late 1960s.  

We had passed the Defensive Driving course by then, so maybe I had the tools to take 'em on and to stay alive through that treacherous stretch of road.

Well, yesterday not one ounce of that old-time anxiety existed, nor did any other drivers. 

I had the road to myself, stopped at will and snapped photos of the beautiful wildflowers bursting from the rock walls above. 

I thought later how those pretty flowers probably existed back in the 1960s, but who had time to look.  Now, there's plenty of time and not much fear.  

You can stop on the Denton curves, take time to smell the flowers and behold the beauty of Lake Pend Oreille. 

I love this lilac time of year, and while they're blooming, I think I'll keep snapping.  Just can't get enough of them.

Part of my trip yesterday included a stop I've never made before, even though my friend Chris and I drove the Lightning Creek Road twice weekly for at least one summer years ago. 

The Clark Fork Cemetery, like all cemeteries, has its own pastoral flavor, serenity and history.  While driving through slowly, I saw Bert Ralph's grave.  

He was one of Clark Fork's horsemen, and if I remember correctly, he had an Appaloosa or two.  And, the Maloney gravestones----Julie Maloney, still alive and well, served as my first introduction to the family.  

We went to Sister School together during early summer weeks at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, and that's how I met a lot of Clark Fork kids as an urchin myself.   Tom Shields was one of those; wasn't he mayor of Clark Fork?  And, Linda Ponack.  We eventually went to college together.  

Years later, I taught Julie Maloney's kids.

The ties to Clark Fork go back as do the trips through there when the place was better known as Clark's Fork.  

The scenes along my way not only heightened my hungry senses but also took me on some good trips to yesteryear.

Spring flowers--especially lilacs---tend to do that. 

Betcha can't guess where that last photo was taken.

Happy Monday. 


stebbijo said...

I think that white house might be one of the homes my Grandmother lived in - sure looks like it. The kids you taught were a little bit older than I, but I recognize all of the names. Yes, Tom Shields was a Mayor at one time in Clark Fork. I believe he sits on the same council these days with my cousin, Russell Schenck, now. I spent a year or two in Sandpoint, Jr. High .. my English teacher was very good but not well liked. Eventually, the youngest Lucky girl, who I was in the same class went on and became an English teacher, I believe in Southern Idaho. Also, I also went to school with the Hadley girl, Patsy. Oh my, how time dates us all. Gotta love Compton White for getting rid of those Denton Curves. I know, I shut my eyes when my Dad drove them. One time, I felt the tire off the road. Love, your photos, I always come by to see what you have.

stebbijo said...

Sorry, I meant the kids you went to school with, not taught. LOL, You are not that old!

Also,another tid bit of history, my son is related to the Shields thru the Fosters who are also related to the Ruens. That is how small towns work. :-)

I would not be surprised if you and I had the same doctor growing up.

Marianne Love said...

Thanks for your comments, Stebbijo. Good to hear from you.

Yes, Tom Shields is a couple of years older than I. Julie Maloney and Linda Ponack are the same age. And, I do remember Patsy Hadley from my teaching years. Actually had her sister Nancy as a student.

Love that house with the lilacs. It's in town on the left of the street that leads to the Lightning Creek Road.

My friend Chris Moon and I used to sit a few hundred feet up Lightning Creek Road two days in a row for 12 hour shifts, counting and interviewing traffic going up the road. We worked for the Forest Service engineers. Lots of good memories of our times there and traveling the road to the summit that leads down to Trestle Creek.