My car has fallen in love with my mechanic, and seems to want to spend more time with him than it does with me, so between that betrayal and the seemingly endless rain we have had, Clancy and I have hit some roadblocks on our Travels project. But since I had the day off work today and we had some nice weather for a change, we made a trip to Alms Park, which is nestled in the hills on the east side of Cincinnati.
I read that the park was once called "Bald Hill," as the Native American tribe that lived in the area cleared away trees to have unobstructed views of settlers coming down the Ohio River. Now, the park boasts a beautiful overlook with an impressive view of the meeting of the Little Miami River and the Ohio.
One of the bloggers I read recently wrote about visiting places, and imagining who else has stood where you are standing. That's a habit I have always had, and today when I stood at the overlook, I couldn't help but think about that tribe, looking down and seeing the boats carrying the settlers. I can't imagine what a sense of foreboding they must have had. Conversely, I can't imagine being on the boats either, setting out to a completely unknown and hostile world.
While standing there, I looked down and saw this compass in the stone.
I really liked it, and had to laugh as well, as anyone who knows me knows I have the worst sense of direction on the planet. A compass is always a good thing for me to come upon. Anyone who relies on me for directions is making a terrible mistake.
Across the street from the overlook is a pavilion, similar to the one at Ault Park. Apparently, the pavilions were designed by the same architect and thus have similar styles, although this Alms Pavilion is smaller and much less ornate. Still, I thought it was stately and very pretty and, as the park was not at all crowded, quite peaceful.
I loved the architecture of the pavilion.
And the view from inside.
In addition, the landscaping around it is lovely.
Clancy and I continued wandering around, and I ended up finding my favorite part of the park right as we were about to head home. When we walked back to the car and retraced our steps, I noticed a wooden bench near the overlook. The bench was engraved "For Betsy - My Princess."
I was totally taken by this bench, and immediately wondered who Betsy was. Anyone who sat on the bench would have a spectacular view of the river and the valley below, and I couldn't help but wonder if Betsy had loved sitting in this very spot.
The bench reminded me of the scene in the movie Notting Hill, when the main characters find an engraved bench in the garden. I found the bench very romantic, and also felt like there was a story hidden in its wood. I can feel ideas spinning in my head about Betsy and her prince.
While I was enchanted by the bench, Clancy couldn't have cared less about it, and was quick to remind me that we were supposed to be heading back to the car, and the air conditioning. We did, and said goodbye to Alms Park.
It was good to get back to our travels, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that my car will stick with me, and we will finally get a prolonged break from the rain. We have pages of places to visit so, with luck, I'm hoping we can get our project on track.