danniewriter

Adventures of Chip de ‘Ville (So many parks, so little time)

clover

Hi all. Chip here.

As you can see, I’ve been all in clover lately.

What a late, but great, Spring it has been. I’ve been so busy collecting photos and ideas for my column, I haven’t had time to dictate.

As a recap, this is a place for Prue* and me to share insights on a few of the dozens of top-flight parks in our area. Additionally, we wanted to find pet-friendly/pet-focused businesses in Metro Louisville. As a bonus, readers gain insight on my profound and inspiring thoughts about life.

My first greenspace columns were about Brown Park in St. Matthews and Seneca Park. It was at the latter where we saw the first glimpses of Spring 2016.

hyacinth

And where Prue was inspired to make me into a meme.

poopmeme

Very funny, indeed. This was the moment where we discovered that my walking limit for one, semi-continuous session is two miles. That’s it. Zero, zip, nada more. This discovery has enabled me often to enjoy the view of Seneca Park at Prue’s shoulder rather than her ankles. It’s simply lovely up there!

We enjoyed a trip to the Metro Park Services headquarters, Joe Creason Park, on Trevilian Way. This is a hub of recreation with all the conceivable amenities in the 41-acre Beargrass Creek State Nature Preserve. The 3.1-mile hiking path is managed by the Louisville Nature Center, which is also on site and is deserving of a column all on its own.

creasonpark

The terrain is hilly but, according to Prue, isn’t so bad that she loses her will to live before reaching the top. The Louisville Tennis Center a nine clay-court facility is also on site. Across the road is the Louisville Zoo. Creason Park is named for an excellent Kentucky journalist whose columns were collected in the book, Crossroads and Coffee Trees.

Another piece of lovely rolling land in the heart of Louisville is George Rogers Clark Park. It’s located off Poplar Level Road across from the main campus of St. Xavier High School. One of the highlights, for me, is the seemingly never-ending collection of wooden posts just begging to be sprinkled.

grc pylons

There’s also a lovely old stone house that now can be rented for parties, receptions or other events. The park is named for Gen. George Rogers Clark, a hero of the American Revolution. (He sometimes is confused for his youngest brother, William, who accompanied Merriwether Lewis on the Lewis and Clark Expeditions.) In his later life, George Rogers Clark lived with his sister’s family at Locust Grove in Louisville, a beautiful estate with an 18th century Georgian house at the center. Clark died in Louisville and is buried at historic Cave Hill Cemetery.

Our last park on today’s tour has become one of our favorites. PeeWee Park is located off Klondike Lane quite near our home. Perhaps it was named for Louisville’s favorite baseball son, Pee Wee Reese, or maybe it’s because the park is very tiny. The park is the terminus for a dozen or more residential back yards, and we’ve had waves and conversations as we have meandered around the short path and taken a rest on the benches. I’ve met several cute kids, too, who always seem to want to pet me, which is cool so long as they don’t pull my tail. The other day, we had the playground to ourselves, which, I have to admit, was kind of boring.

chipplay

(Gotta give Prue a break though. Pretty much impossible to take photos and make the thing-y go at the same time.)

We love PeeWee’s neighborhood park feel with its badminton court, multiple grills (one of them extra big) and porch-type swings. The neighborhood next door is a perfect place to get in more steps on the abundant sidewalks.

There are three more parks (and counting) to give you info on, and other places to explore. I hope you will stay tuned.

Later, Chip.

(*Person Responsible for Ultimately Everything)

Adventures of Chip de ‘Ville (snow fun)

chipatdoor

Hello all. Chip here.

I hate snow. I hate cold. I hate rain. The photo above is representative of my attitude regarding outdoor activities in these conditions: “I’m waiting! Open the door … now!”

I’m not being difficult. I’m being honest to my (mostly) Mexican breeding. For a peek at some of the terrain which bears my breed’s name*

Chihuahuan_Desert

Average temperature, 75 delicious degrees according to an article on a certain free online encyclopedia.

Nothing so clearly reveals the inequality of the stations designated for canines, felines and homo sapiens than the current weather in the ‘Ville. Cats and people evidently are members of a rarified class that “do their business,” indoors. Someone please show me the rule book that states I, as a canine, must go outside to relieve myself.

It doesn’t take much snow to render a parking lot or lawn impassable for me. One wrong step and I’m in over my head, literally. Additionally is the indignity of being dressed like an argyle-encased kielbasa. I must point out that, even with the sweater, my feet and backside are as bare as the day I was born. Brrrr.

In fairness I should point out that Prue** seems cognizant (as much as any biped with opposable thumbs can be) of my challenges. This morning, she donned her winter ensemble, left me indoors and headed out into the elements to scout a location before stuffing me into the sweater. She also carried me through the deeper parts. Her reconnoiter is necessary because we live in a condo; the “grounds” are copious, not our own, and it’s not possible to just scoot me out the back door.

We ran across a simple but clever idea on Pinterest the other day. If you have a small dog and a yard, I cannot recommend it enough. Before the snow comes, scout out a place near the door and lay down a tarp. Post-snowfall, lift a corner of the tarp and voila, a snow-free spot on which your canine may take care of business.

The American Veterinary Medical Association has these tips on taking good care of your pets in cold weather. Give it a look.

We are hoping to get back to park-hopping soon, so keep watching this space for the latest installment.

Here’s hoping for an early spring!

Chip

*Photo of Chihuahua Desert near Sierra Blanca, Texas, by Ricraider, September 2013.

**Person Responsible for Ultimately Everything