Things Could be Worse

The Lackawanna River ebbs and flows before it hits rapids that swoosh the water to create waves.  It reminds me of a log flume at an amusement park that just crashed to the bottom. I place myself on a large boulder that creates a barrier between me and the water. The river smells slightly murky but after awhile the scent becomes refreshing because it gives onlookers a scene of its authenticity.

Walkers, runners, and tee-ball watchers flood the area but rarely do they stop to really absorb the nature around them. Although, there are two young boys further down the river who seem to be appreciative, as they skip several rocks from one side to the other.

While they are playing, the sun begins to set and it casts a light throughout the trees onto the river. It paints the greenery around me to be extremely vivid and the foaming of the waves looks crystallized.

I stand to walk along the river and notice the small ripples that propel the gravel by the edge of the walk way. It is fascinating how the stream goes from being so fierce to so calm in a matter of inches.

As I continue to walk I encounter a woman wearing a Keystone College windbreaker. I think she is intrigued by the shared student qualities we each possess, being that I am holding a notebook and pen. She asks what I am writing and I explain that I am taking in the sights around the river to compose a travel piece. She nods and adds that the area is so beautiful. I am almost instantly taken back by her ability to start conversation and interact with strangers. She seems so genuine and I feel at ease telling her about my assignment. I listen to her speak and take mental notes on her behavior to model my interview technique around her fearlessness.   I suggest that perhaps people in the area take the natural beauty for granted, and she agrees. She blames it on the harsh winters and begins to complain about the $500 dollars she fleshed out to get new tires. However she doesn’t talk down about her situation for long and closes out the conversation by saying, “things could be worse.”

I look to the massive oak tree to my left that reaches so high it appears to touch the sky, and say “that is true” as she walks past me on the walking trail. That is very true.

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