1. 1.
    traveling from place to place, especially working or based in various places for relatively short periods.
    "the peripatetic nature of military life"
    synonyms:nomadic, itinerant, traveling, wandering, roving, roaming, migrant,migratory, unsettled
    "I could never get used to her peripatetic lifestyle"
  2. 2.
  1. 1.
    a person who travels from place to place.
  2. 2.
    an Aristotelian philosopher.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

High Marks for Progress--Lessons for Me on a Tutorial Tuesday

To show you that I have a softer, gentler side, I present these Celosia flowers blooming with abandon in my mother's yard. I drove a few miles down the road this past weekend to visit her in Southeast Missouri, while Hubby finished up his 80-plus-hour week at the rig in Southern Illinois.

I hope that these pictures of Celosia can soften what now appears to me as a rather harsh comment left on TC's site, The Write Gardener. Maybe I should avoid visiting other blogs on Mondays. Those days invariably bring out the worst in me for some reason. It must be from the effects of the moon that gave its name to Monday.

My mom's hybrid tea roses are just about finished blooming for the year, but I found a single rosebud holding itself proudly above the rather tired looking leaves of the shrub. It's fresh and lovely.

Now here is a full-blown rose showing evidence of its encounter with some kind of marauder. Whoever he was, he must have felt sorry for the old gal and left her in peace for the rest of her show. She will live for a while longer on my blog.

I took my mom to lunch in Cape Girardeau at this historic eatery, Port Cape Girardeau. I wonder if the Coca-Cola being advertised so boldly on the side of the building contained at one time a secret ingredient to combat fatigue. Amazing, isn't it, how prices have changed?

After lunch, we took a stroll on the street-side of the Mississippi River floodwall. The wall has become a showpiece for the city, inviting visitors to take a step back in time.

Looking back up the hill from the floodwall, I could see the Common Pleas Courthouse, still in use today as a site for the administration of justice. It was built in 1854 and has witnessed a lot of pleas since that time.

Turning back to the floodwall and going back a bit farther in time, this panel on the wall captured my attention. Perhaps justice was more blind than usual in this instance.

At the edge of the wall, the river-level gauge bears witness to progress. Skeeter had an interesting remark about progress in her comment on my last post: Arrrgh! The river's dimensions, course, and boundaries have been fiddled with for years by a certain government entity known as the Army Corps of Engineers. They have made a valiant effort to spur economic progress to the area with barge traffic. Unfortunately, nature has a way of foiling the efforts of even the most dedicated public servants.

Cape Girardeau proudly proclaims its heritage and progressive attitude to any passersby who happen to be traveling on the river. It is a beautiful city with friendly people and a thriving healthcare industry, a virtual medical mecca for folks coming from hundreds of miles away.

This piece of progress came just in the nick of time for millions of travelers like me who cross the river from Illinois to Missouri. The old bridge was a crumbling bit of high anxiety that I dreaded every time I drove to Missouri to visit my parents. The kids in the back seat learned to pipe down whenever mom gripped the steering wheel in anticipation of the crossing. Two narrow lanes (one each way!), somehow, for many years accommodated heavy traffic which included semi-trucks. Horror stories about near misses occurring with great frequency kept this driver on her toes.

Crossing the bridge now seems like a cake-walk compared to the old days of white-knuckled driving. I felt confident enough to snap a picture (while driving!) of my approach to the bridge while heading back to the Land of Lincoln on Sunday afternoon. Kids, please don't attempt this stunt. Only (idiot) drivers with plenty of experience crossing dangerous, old bridges are qualified to perform this feat.

On the road home, when no other cars were in sight, I snapped another picture of the floodwaters which have almost completely disappeared from the floodplain on the Illinois side of the river. The wetlands tried to make a comeback this year and almost succeeded.


  1. Thanks for the name tossing there. tee hee. I do like positive progress but sometimes the past is lost to progress.. Arggg is all I can say...

    What a nice tour you gave us! This looks like a charming place to visit. I love eating in renovated old downtowns so much better then Chain-mania...

    How ironic you show the Trail of Tears sign. I just scheduled a posting mentioning a Trail of Tears park in KY that I recently visited! Not sure the day posted but within the next two weeks..

  2. Loved the tour..I haven't seen the post you are talking about, but will check it out...Grey day here...

  3. Are you talking about the nature is a horse of a different color comment? I don't think it was harsh, your opinion for sure but TC must not have minded it at all. It shows a good thinker. The celosia is great and your mother's town looks like any small town America, quite quaint.

  4. I almost feel like I was accompning you and your mother on this tour! Thanks for bringing me along!

  5. First let me assure you that I wasn't offended by your comment. Although I did detect a little soft harshness, it only made me appreciate your opinion all the more.

    And tell your Mom she grows lovely celosia and roses.

    Thanks for the wonderful tour.

    And when posting on my blog please continue using soft harshness or loud whispers as you see fit. ;~)

  6. The celosia are lovely. I've been seeing them on Urban Oasis blog and I'm going to plant some next spring. Do you dry them and use them in arrangements?

    Thanks for the mini tour of the area. I've been thru the area but haven't had much time for sight seeing.

  7. Skeeter, thanks for letting me pirate your expression. ;>} I agree about the downtown experience. You usually get much better food for a reasonable price. Is the trail in KY somewhere near Marion? I seem to remember going there once when we lived in W. KY. It was right around Halloween, as I recall, and you could sense a certain spine-tingling melancholy in the area.

    Thanks, Michelle. Hope the rest of your week is brighter.

    Tina, no, it wasn't the horse reference. Something about tenets of transcendentalism. I have this curse brought on by taking too many critical writing classes in college. Hubby says I'm a nitpicker. I should have been a monkey! Cape is actually not a small, quaint town anymore. It has spread out far and wide. The only quaint part (if one can call it that) is the downtown area we visited. It's certainly rich in history.

    You're welcome, Katarina, anytime!

    I'm glad, TC. It's a good thing you're here to keep me alert--remember the "Lorapedlum"? I give you permission to shout if you see something amiss here. ;>} I like this quote from Hemingway: "There's no rule on how it is to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly. Sometimes it is like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges."

    Marnie, you are welcome! I do believe you can dry the flowers, although I can't imagine the color would stay as bright on them. Probably some kind of flower preservative would help. I have never seen Celosia as big as these are. My mom said they were potted plants she got a few years ago, and they must reseed themselves, because she has never had to re-plant. Next time you go through the area, get off the interstate and check out the downtown. It's worth the slight detour if you are a history buff.

  8. Celosia flowers - what interesting color an texture! That is a perfect rose. It sounds like you had a nice visit with your mom.

  9. "Sometimes it is like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges."

    Indeed! It's no wonder blasting is needed when you consider the block that writers sometimes have is made of cement. ;~)

  10. W@W: I certainly enjoyed you trip and there was a lot for you to share. Thanks for taking us along on the trip. Your Mother has beautiful flowers.

  11. Your mother's flowers are beautiful; my celosia--only in containers--have long since shriveled up.
    I don't think I've ever been to Cape Girardeau; I surely would have remembered driving over the old bridge, because I would have panicked, too.

    I had to check out your "harsh comment"--which wasn't harsh at all--and was glad I did. I've never been to the Write Gardener's blog before and enjoyed it, although I must admit it is a little too late in the evening for me to think philosophically:)

  12. I thoroughly enjoyed our tour. I felt like I strolling along with you.~~Dee

  13. I really enjoyed the tour of Cape Girardeau! What an interesting place! In fact, I've never been to Missouri. My brother lived in Nebraska for a number of years, and when my parents would visit he and my sis-in-law, they would go far and wide rto the most interesting sites! I HAVE to get to the midwest!

    The Trail of Tears is such a heartbreaking part of our history and I would like to go to some of the designated areas of the trail that have been made into museums, or have some historical markers and displays. Loved the celosia and roses, too, by the way! Great post!

  14. Sarah, thank you for stopping by and for "following." I'm honored. I think it's the Celosia's texture that makes it so interesting. It looks like a colorful bottle brush or straw broom, very old-fashioned looking. I guess that's one reason why I chose it for the post. It seemed to fit in with the historical perspective. I always enjoy spending time with my mom. We like to stay up late and watch old movies together, something I also enjoy doing with my daughter.

    TC, if I had to write for a living, a block for me would probably be more like bedrock than cement. It would take an earthquake to dislodge it!

    Thanks, FG! I enjoy my little jaunts with you on your blog.

    Hi, Rose. Sorry about your beloved Cubs. :>( Let's keep our fingers crossed for tonight. One of these days, you will have to come downstate and see what we have to offer. Lots of wine is to be had for sure. Since hubby may be busy working for the next several weekends, I will probably have to twist my sister's arm so she'll accompany me on another wine tour. There are several I've not visited yet. I'm glad you found TC's blog. We have a lot of fun with our comments to each other. He has a great sense of humor. Hope you have a great weekend!

    Thank you, Dee! I enjoy sharing my experiences with everyone. It's been a while since I visited you. I will be stopping by soon.

    Marie, I'm glad you enjoyed the short tour. There were a lot of other things I could have added, but I didn't want to make the post any longer than it already was. As for the memorial sites, I guess there's not much else we can do except remember and teach the next generation about what happened. If everyone forgets, things have a way of recurring.

  15. "If everyone forgets." Here is another lesson for me, the forgetful one. I thanked Sarah for "following" and forgot to thank the others: TC, Michelle (Rambling Woods), and Kanak. Thank you all! By adding the follow gadget, I am finding it much easier to keep up with everyone's latest posts on the dashboard.

  16. It's not really necessary for you to thank me, but you're most welcome. (I take it your like me and just a little sensitive about some things.)

  17. My posting of the Trail of Tears will be this Sunday. The town is Hopkinsville, KY just over the TN border a bit north of Ft. Campbell, KY...

  18. TC, I used to think I oould let things slide off my back, but this past year I've found they've been settling in and piling up all these years (at the base of the spine). My advice for sensitive people like us: Don't keep things bottled up inside. Blog and let the cork pop once in a while. If you're lucky, you will find a group of people (gardeners and nature lovers, of course!) who understand and let you be "real."

  19. Skeeter, thanks! I'm looking forward to reading it. Enjoy your weekend.

  20. I have never really looked at anyone blog before. I was actually looking for a picture of the lorapedlum plant, and this popped up. It caught my attention though. I am from Southern IL, Anna-Jonesboro to be exact. I left when I was 22 and moved to Jacksonville fl. I have been here 6 years now. I do remember driving across that old bridge on numerous occassions. I was always in Cape or Carbondale. Cape is a Beautiful little city. Did you by chance eat at a little Cajun place by the river called Brousards. Outstanding place, or it used to be anyway. SEMO is a thriving, nice little college, and the hospitals there are top notch. My parents live on the ooutskirts of Anna and go to all of their doctors appointment there. It saves alot of people in the area on time. Instead of having to go to St Louis like they did maybe 10 years ago. I know all about the good old heartland area, every backroad and creek there is. Me and my buddies used to drive from IL to MO to KY and back all without ever touching a highway. It is a very beautiful place all around, and I try to explain it to my friends down here, but its hard to just explain it. I always enjoy when someone else recognizes it also.

    By the way did you go to any of the winery's. There are about 6 of them in the vicinity now. In the flood lands you took pictures of, people were growing rice there a few years ago, there is also a shrimp farm on Kratsinger Hollow rd outside of Anna going towards Cobden. Its amazing how many different things can thrive in small town areas.

    Again nice post, and take care

  21. Hoppml, I'm so glad you enjoyed the post and that you commented. I haven't added one of those gadgets like Sitemeter that tracks everyone's visit so I don't know who is reading unless a comment is posted. I may be perpetuating a mystery, but that's the way I like it. I hope the info on the Loropetalum was helpful to you. It seems to me like you should start a blog. Is gardening something you like to do? At any rate, it would be interesting to read your perspective on S. Illinois as well as Jax.