Saturday, October 06, 2007

The Way

On Thursday I took the kids to the Green Animals Topiary Garden in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. The garden and mansion are part of the historic Newport Mansions, overseen by the Preservation Society of Newport Mansions . It was mid-week in October meaning, while not completely empty, there weren't a lot of visitors to the garden that day. So much the better since it meant no one caught my kids touching the topiaries, shaking the bamboo, trying to eat the grapes off the arbor, and stirring sticks around in the fish pond, all activities I'm sure the preservation society would frown on.
Upon leaving, we went to a conservation area that was recently mentioned in a Boston Globe travel article. According to mapquest, the spot was less than two miles from Green Animals but I went by it at least three or four times before finally figuring out where it was located. The reason being, the road came off the circular driveway of the elementary school with no street sign to suggest the driveway was anything but the entrance to the school. It seems to me the Globe should have mention such an important detail. Something along the lines of "to get to the conservation land you must pull into the Melville Elementary School," but alas, I was on my own.
Strangely though, I knew where I was. It was exactly where Gene and I got lost and had to do several turnarounds trying to find a fishing spot while researching On The Water's Fishing New England: A Rhode Island Shore Guide. It dawned on me when I pulled into this small shopping plaza thinking maybe it would lead to the conservation area. The name of the road was King Charles Drive and I remembered Gene and I did the same thing. We took the road thinking perhaps the location we were seeking, Weaver Cove, was just behind the shopping complex. The road led to neither conservation land nor fishing hole, just the shopping mall.
Not to criticize the Globe, but in our fishing guide, we gave both specific directions, and, a darn good map of the area. In fact I wish I'd brought my guide book along on Thursday, since I also recall that the fishing spot was a lot nicer than the conservation land turned out to be.

song: The Way • artist: Fastball

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