Niagara Gazette

Opinion

October 1, 2013

BRADBERRY: Immersed in chaos, surrounded by peace

Niagara Gazette — Politics’ current cranium cracking cacophonous rancor reminds me of the day nearly 50 years ago when I realized that I could breathe easier, think much more clearly and make better decisions when I escaped from the chaos.

By going to the other side of what used to be a very busy traffic-jammed Buffalo Avenue and crossing the railroad tracks on the other side of the smoke-billowing factories that once separated me from the river, I found peace and tranquility on the banks of the mighty Niagara just, a few feet away from the front door of the house where I grew up.

Away from the constant banging, whirling, spitting flatulence of the ever churning factories, I began taking full advantage of my proximity to the peaceful beauty that lay just on the other side by exploring the length of the waterways from Grand Island to Devils Hole and beyond, being particularly fascinated by the gorge; it was the perfect escape from the noise of the local economy, so hot you could smell it burning.

You’d think I’d have gotten used to the noise and smoke having been born and raised so close to it, but I never really did. It was the calm quiet serenity of the river and the gentle trickle of the nearby Gill Creek that I sought over there, on the other side.

My daring partners and I would crawl under the railroad trestle at Gill Creek and Buffalo Avenue and emerge on the other side, past the factory security guards and make our way out onto the river banks stopping and playing in the slimy green ooze that trickled out from someplace along the creek, examining some of the strangest looking dead frogs and other apparently deformed animals that had met their demise in the murky mess.

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