The bridge, a link to past and present.
Within each of our timeless lives there remains that one thing that no one can ever separate from us. Some have that black coal eyed, torn tattered caramel polyester furred lumpy bear, which smells of salty tears. Others have ornamented pictures and memoirs cased up for times to share. While others there is a profound place unlike any other place, it lies closely to the soul of their being. Mine is an old wooden Aqueduct footbridge that lies on the outskirts of Coshocton.
Every fall, before the brisk of the chilling air, just cool enough to wear a long sleeve shirt and a vest, I travel to the Aqueduct Footbridge. I park my sonic blue pearl metallic Saturn convertible on the west end of the park, between the park and historic 1800s Roscoe Village. Today is a festival at Roscoe Village, the apple butter stir, with samples of hot apple cider and cake doughnuts free to the tourist that savors it here. As I poise myself motionless in the parking lot I feel a sense of tranquility, the senses all blend into a familiarity. Off in the distance I can hear the faint sound of bluegrass and old time music tickling my ear.
The leaves are in array of orange, yellows lying still on the moist grass, the smell of apple butter and cinnamon stick in cider lingers in the air. The time is mid morning- early afternoon, the vibrant sun just peeking out from behind the cotton soft clouds. I begin to walk the serpentine blacktop bike trail towards my destination; to my left is a basin lake, to my right an open weedy field. I hear some gurgling of fish coming to the surface for air. An approximate 50 feet ahead of me, I caught a glimpse of the bridge encapsulate by a variety of Chestnut, Walnut and Oak trees abound it.
My heart begins a flutter beat as I get closer; my palms begin to perspire, feelings of anxiety bursting boundless within me till I reach the center of the old wooden foot bridge. The railings have been carved up with initials of lovers past and present, tracing them with my finger I feel the grain of the cedar on my fingertips. They too have come here to venture beyond the bridge to the exhilarating beauty that lies beyond. As I Lean against the tattered wood rail, facing north, the sun not quite directly overhead yet, Buoyant beams of light shine through the soft frosted clouds. As the rays of light hit the flowing narrow river below, I can see a prism of colors and the trout fish just breaking water for a few minutes to bask in the sunlight. I hear the water rushing to its destination and the leaves as they lightly fall upon their cousins on the ground. I reach my hand out further towards the front of the top rail and trace a curving, the wind begins to blow, and I catch a chill through my bones.
A strange warming sensation overcame me, as if someone walked up behind me and wrapped me in a soothing dryer warm blanket of love. A sense of familiarity overcame me in that moment, and in that very second I turned around, to find there was no one there. I knew though, sometimes you can’t see things but you feel them.
The bridge is needed to link time past to time present.