As we stroll down the path that is our life we encounter people, things, and places that, while not always obvious at the time, are to become constants in our journey. One such constant in my life is water. Ironically another constant for me are bridges; I see them as enablers, connectors. For this, my first post on Picture Pathway, I decided to write about The Bridge.
The Bridge rests in Dick’s Dam Park in Bolton. It spans the Humber River connecting one side of the park to the other. It has also subtly connected many moments in my life.
My husband and I moved to Bolton, and married, in 1991 (yes, in that order). Dick’s Dam Park immediately became part of our lives. We were thrilled that we should have the good fortunate of living so close to the Humber River that we could, within minutes, be walking along its banks or the trail.
When our youngest son was born we took him for walks and picnics there. Our Springer Spaniels thought it was a piece of heaven. And, on a frosty November morning in 2006, while we walked along the river I snapped an image of The Bridge (above). It was an image that immediately became one of my favourite photos ever.
While The Bridge beckoned in every season I always loved the way it looked on chilly mornings in late fall before the TRCA had it temporarily removed for the winter to reduce risk of ice jams and related damage. The Slow painted onto Glasgow Road as you turned out of the park even seemed to be telling part of the message.
Over our years in Bolton we walked that bridge time and again. In 2010 a local photographer, David Walker from Walkerview photographed Len and I crossing the bridge for a campaign piece when I ran for local Council. In the summer of 2011 our youngest son stood on The Bridge with a crowd of friends from Humberview at the end of the school year. His future bride was in the group.
Then in September 2021, after a two-year Covid delay, I stood beside that bridge, hubby’s arm around my shoulder. Our two sons who had been born 20 years apart so both grew up as “only children” stood shoulder to shoulder on The Bridge smiling back at us, and I was moved to tears.
Minutes later our youngest son drew close to his bride, the true love of his life, on The Bridge, and I felt a sense of completion. Connection. Clarity.
There are places along our path that were absolutely meant to be there. To be noticed. And acknowledged. They help ground us, give us clarity, and help build the memories and love that shape our life. We just have to let them.