Sunday, May 22, 2011

Remember Those Who Danced



Remember those who danced over a hundred years ago. Hmmm.


Fixie in the falls

I both noodled along and raced today. Over by the soon-to-be-knocked-down soundwalls along the 101 freeway, I rode super-slow, absorbing the sounds and sights of an environment about to be changed. They are going to destroy some of the art in the process, although it is still unclear to me how much exactly, and what it's going to be replaced with. Then along the canal I went fast for a while, and then cooled my jets beside the Arizona Falls for a bit.

I read that sign as I turned to roll down the ramp to the cool area and drinking fountains: "remember those who gathered, picnicked, and danced at Arizona Falls over 100 years ago," it implored me. So I listened to the water whooshing over the falls, and thought: I can't remember them, since I wasn't around then, but the expression probably means something like "imagine them," or "have thoughts for them," something like that. That was a long time ago, though. I can picture a band, and people dressed in their finest, out on a late Spring evening down by the falls for a social event. Perhaps some rode bicycles. This trip down imaginary-memory lane made me recall my old neighbor from childhood, Mrs. L, who was almost old enough. Let me do a little math....she's long gone now, I think she would have been an older child around 1900. She lived in the midwest then, but perhaps thoughts of her back then are close enough to what the AZ Falls signage makers had in mind. Mrs. L told me an expression they used when she was growing up to describe something that was wonderful, or great: supercopflopcious, she told me. So: a band playing, water falling, the sun setting on a late spring evening, picnic food set out, chicken, salads, roasted meats, veggies, pies under bug screens...supercopflopcious! I can almost hear the water whooshing and the band playing.






To give context, depth, and perspective to our own daily activities, work, and pastimes, even our lives, we look back, and imagine, and a specific place assigned a specific history can help with that. No Internet, no phones, I think not even electricity, many other things which must have made their lives much different, yet I can remember them, because I remember links in my own life to them, like Mrs. L, and similar evening outings from my own past. If I closed my eyes above and listened to the water falling, and breathed in deep to smell the greasewood, it was even easier to imagine them. I could almost hear the music playing.

These things were blooming like crazy out there today. I wonder if they had them a hundred years ago around the Arizona Falls, or if these are recently imported; I don't know for sure.

Exuberant red bloomage, dancing right out across the cycle path

It was a good ride today, no, more than that, excellent? No, I'm looking for another word, something a little more historic, got it: superco-- you know. Remember those who danced. Get up. Go ride.

 

2 comments:

  1. Arizona has sure grown up! Isn't the centennial next year?

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  2. Yes Steve, 100 years! Seems like it would go with "100 miles" (of cycling), doesn't it? "The Centennial Century" is a strange phrase--it sounds like it should sound redundant, but it doesn't. If we rode it when it was 100 degrees, well, that would be perfect: "AZ 100-100-100" maybe another good name.

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