Wednesday, September 21, 2016

A Week Here and Clarkston.

It's Wednesday today. A week since we arrived here. Just like it was on my first visit, I am blown over by the civic sense, discipline and orderliness that I witness every where. The next thing that catches my imagination is the seemingly endless sidewalks running next to equally endless stretches of green lawns. I spend hours just walking and cycling on the sidewalks. The abscence of boundary walls make the already large spaces appear larger. The vegetation may appear to be too geometric to some eyes but I love the sight.

A crane in the protected Rouge river flowing  near our residence
While being enamoured by the sidewalks I am vary of the sprinklers hidden in the grass at regular intervals. They have preset timings and the one next to you may suddenly jump into life, sprinkling you with a generous spray of cold water on a chilly morning!

Did not do anything much other than trying to know the surroundings and since I took the trouble of procuring an international driving licence this time, I am attempting to drive a car. I have started to drive carefully, within the subdivision. I try my best to strictly follow the road signs and lane markings. I have seen (with disbelief!) motorists coming to  a full stop in front of a ‘stop’ sign board even when they have an entire stretch of a mile for themselves and am forcing my brain, which is trained to ignore all road signs, to follow the example. Similarly it is a task to keep to the right side of the road when a part of my brain keeps screaming “You are on the wrong side”!

 The Sunday evening we visited the city of Clarkston, a small city near Novi, Michigan, where I have put up. It is a charming small city next to a picture post card type lake. The houses along the tree lined streets look like a painting!  People were out strolling leisurely on the main street with their dogs on the leash. Some sat next to the large windows inside cosy restaurants enjoying a snack or a drink while children cycled on the side walks. Some stood in groups in front of the shops chatting and some were out in their boats on the lake. The place seemed calm, comfortable and contented. As I walked around the place eagerly filling my eyes and heart with the beauty of the place, I could fully experience the emotion of Kannada poet Pampa when he said “ಮರಿದುಂಬಿಯಾಗಿ  ಮೇಣ್ ಕೋಗಿಲೆಯಾಗಿ ಪುಟ್ಟುವುದು ನಂದನದೊಳ್ ಬನವಾಸಿದೇಶದೊಳ್ “.     While extolling the beauty of the land of Banavaasi and the virtues of it’s people, Pampa says “one should be born, if not as a human, at least as a bee or a bird in this land!”

It may be the case of grass being greener on the other side, I don’t know. I have written what I felt at that moment and here are some pictures of the city.

Beautiful houses with a lake in their backyard.

A cafetaria on the main street

The evening sun forms a pattern on the lawn

Houses on the main street - what a pretty entrance!

A cafe in the street corner

The lake - part of the backyard of most of the houses

A clear water stream runs through the city, adding to the charm.

A side road leads to the lake.

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