Friday, October 26, 2007

up a lazy river

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....or in this case the very lazy Mill Creek.

This a very peaceful spot along a gravel road. A small bridge crosses Mill Creek at this point. This place represents a quiet beauty that is fast disappearing in the Fox Valley. The site of a busy "lifestyle mall" is only a couple miles from here and already the residents of one of the Mill Creek subdivisions have discovered the road can be used as a shortcut between Route 38 and Keslinger Road.

I think it's important to have a sense of the land which you inhabit. I'm not sure if residents of the massive subdivision complexes that blanket the area even realize there IS an actual creek named Mill Creek. This spot is just a dusty, unpaved shorcut in their busy lives.

8 comments:

Junebug said...

That is beautiful. We have some similar creeks around where I live. When we are driving (and I'm not the one driving) I look around at everything in the pastures and creeks and things along the road that I can see. I think I got this from my dad who always drove us around in the country. He was always scouting good places to hunt deer, but then again he just like to be in the countryside.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy your photgraphy very much, but I just had to comment on the commentary associated with this picture. I know this gravel road. It is designated as a Kane County scenic or historic road. I'm not sure of the official designation, but in any case it will remain a gravel road. Given that Mill Creek subdivision has existed across from the south end of this road for nearly 15 years now, I don't see how you can claim we've "already" discovered this short-cut, which by the way is not the most effective short-cut to the lifestyle mall you lament. This gravel road has been there for a long time and the vast majority of us routinely avoid traveling on it since the dust and/or mud triggers the need for a premature car wash. Oh, and we are well aware of the fact that there is an actual Mill Creek. For details on the water quality and how Mill Creek compares to other Fox Valley creeks check out this 2004 Sierra Club report: http://illinois.sierraclub.org/news/FoxRiver/CreekData.html#mill

or this more current report: http://ctap.inhs.uiuc.edu/publications/DeWalt_Kane_Co._Report_2.7.07.pdf

Zanne said...

Thanks for your assessment of my commentary and you are correct, it is not fair to single out residents of Mill Creek or make blanket statements in this regard. I wish there were more people like you in our communities who care enough to educate themselves on our local environment. I meet people all the time who know nothing of the history, topography or culture of the area. There are just people who are not interested in knowing these things.

I am surprised that there's not more of a culture clash as development moves on the valley in such a big way. The farmers and others (such as the owners of Geneva Flower Farm) seem to be selling to the developers and moving on. But their presence is missed. Is it just sentimentality that makes us sad at the loss of a place such as Geneval Flower Farm? Or is our community diminished by the replacement of locally owned small operations by large corporate businesses, or in this case very expensive homes?

Alot of the farmers west of Route 47 were originally displaced when Schaumburg was developed back in the late 60's, early 70's. They are facing being displaced yet again, this time late in life. Isn't there a cultural anthropology graduate student that could do a study of this subject? I think it would be fascinating to uncover the dynamics of developmental push.

Thanks again for your comment. Hopefully it will spark further discussion on these matters.

Hurricane Teen said...

Wow that sounds very, very familiar! Our Mill Creek looks quite similar, but a little more brushy and swampy :-D My family has lived in Mill Creek, Florida for over 200 years, and just in the past 10 years subdivisions began taking over. These new people do not know the history or meaning of the natural and cultural areas around here. These transients have absolutely no sense of place. I'm sure it's the same around your Mill Creek. Take care.

Zanne said...

Hurricane - This is happening all over the world. I get e-mails from Spain, England, South America and elsewhere.

Lori said...

This is beautiful.

It seems like my car is always dusty as the shortcut and long way around to my destinations both involve gravel roads. But for the most part, I don't mind. I'll take my quiet rural life over the craziness of modern expansion.

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