Today, my best friend Adam came over to hang out. He reminded me that today was World Wide Play Day, and suggested that we go out to a park. So, we packed a lunch (Tofurky cranberry & stuffing slices and cheddar cheese slices with wheat bread for sandwiches, a package of fresh snap peas, a bag of apples, and two fresh homemade lavender and dark chocolate brownies), grabbed a blanket and my camera, and set off for a favorite location of mine: Plotter Kill Nature Reserve.
While we didn't take the portion of the trail that goes past the waterfalls, I did manage a pretty long hike, and Adam was patient with my slower progress, giving me a hand to steady me for steep downward portions. We saw and heard blue jays, chickadees, a downy woodpecker, a gray catbird, and many other species. I introduced him to the carroty scent of Queen Anne's lace and pointed out what poison ivy looks like. I saw no reptiles or amphibians, but I wasn't looking for them.
Five years ago, I would have completed the circuit with no trouble. I actually rescued a kitten in Plotter Kill back then (her name is Akira, and she lives with someone that I worked with at the time), and it was a favorite spot for me to visit with friends. Now, I'm going to take a couple days to recover from the exertion, but it was well worth the effort.