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Cruel Human Tricks

On Saturday’s taper long run of 10 miles, I ran to Weeks Pond, which is burrowed within my town’s sparse patchy network of conservation lands. To describe Weeks Pond, I’ll earnestly employ an overused idiom: It’s a hidden gem!

Weeks Pond and the adjoining meadow are a part of the popular local Audubon sanctuary, but few people know about it; to access the trails, one must walk down the road from the main entrance and take a sharp left onto an obscured, little-used road. It took me a few years to discover the trailhead, which has tiny signage, no parking, and appears to be just another grand backyard in a neighborhood of grand homes.

In the middle of a lush (by New England standards) 1-2 acre of forest, there is Weeks Pond — small, man-made, with a thick cover of pale green algae. Putting aside the distant drone of cars and trucks from the Boston metro highways, it is the only outdoor space in my town that allows for content solitude. I tend to visit to Weeks Pond on recovery runs, when I want to stop, walk, and meditate.

There are ducks. One gem-like quality of Weeks Pond: the rich guy who built it (i.e., Weeks) intentionally included an island so that ducks would have a safe place from the local coyotes.

Weeks Pond

Weeks Pond

I like watching the ducks swim through the algae. It is one of those oddly satisfying things. To lure the ducks to make tracks over to me, I tossed a small wood chip into the pond.


Here they come

Of course, the ducks quickly discover that this is not one of the local elderly gentlepeople coming to feed them stale anadama bread. It is a deceitful human with no food. I feel bad for undermining their trust. But watching their paths through the algae-covered pond is still pleasing, and I vow to return some day soon with hot dog buns. At least I am not a coyote.



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