So many years ago, when Libby and I were in land-acqusition mode, we saw an ad for an 80-acre bit of forest on the edge of the Missouri Ozarks and decided we wanted to see it. So we called the realtor and arranged to meet at a certain gas station beside the highway — it was only two lanes then — and follow him to this intriguing forest.
And we did. And then we followed him into this intriguing forest. At the time, Roundrock was a trackless wilderness. The road we rely on today wasn’t built, and the most obvious way into the woods (and allowing an obvious way out) was to follow the creek that more or less began at the corner of the property and more or less went down the center of it.
This was a hot day, and being fools, we hadn’t brought along any water. Nor had the realtor, who should have been experienced in this sort of thing.
But we pushed our way down the creekbed until we came to the spot you see above. That is actually some bedrock, exposed by the flow of the intermittent creek passing over it. This is a different part of our forest, which I wrote a bit about yesterday. Anyway, on our long-ago walk, the realtor stopped at this point, and we all commented about the heat.
Whether his next act was stage managed or whether it was spontaneous, I don’t know. He bent over this bit of exposed bedrock and dipped his hands into one of those standing pools of water. (Hard to see in the photo.) Then he splashed across the back of his neck to cool off. He said he wasn’t sure but he thought that this spot might actually be a spring. (The rest of the creek we had crunched down was dry at the time.)
To a couple of naive land buyers, this sounded magical. I’m sure he realized it. I think I had enuf savvy at the time to realize that he was probably trying to entice us, and I noted at the time that his “discovery” was tentative — that it might be a spring.
Our hike continued down the creek for a ways, and we had circumscribed the entire 80 acres later, so we eventually knew we wanted this woods, but as you might guess, this “spring” never turned out to be a spring. (There is a small seep spring farther down the creek, but it hardly qualifies, and he hadn’t pointed it out to us as we passed, so I don’t think he knew about it.) But in our many treks about our woods, we sometimes come to this spot, and unless it has rained in recent days, there is no water on this bedrock.
- Dog-day cicadas begin to sing.