Years ago Husband and I went on a bike ride. We found ourselves taking a rest in a cemetery. It was old. Very old. For Ohio anyway. The cemetery had graves from the 1700’s. But what it had that made me remember it, and want to go back again, was a simple little stone. On it, is said “Her Name was Hattie”. I have wondered about Hattie for years. Who was she, and why was she only remembered as “Hattie”. And why was her simple little stone placed next to a much larger, taller stone?
So we embarked on another bike ride today. Not so much to find Hatti again, but since we were going that way I wanted to get a picture of the stone and a picture of the stone next to hers. Then I wanted to look up her history. I assumed that she had something to do with the person who belonged to the much larger stone. I was hoping if I could look up the town history, and maybe find a connection to the larger stone’s person, it might make a mention of Hattie.
Isn’t any day a great day for a bike ride? With hot and sunny days ranking up among the best of the best?
We rode under the blue skies, along the greenery of the growing world and in and out of the hills. We didn’t have to race the water because it was content to just lie about and be peaceful. And I didn’t mind stopping or slowing down occassionally to wait on Husband who seems to enjoy dawdling. Because, really, there is no hurry.
There are signs along the trail with gentle reminders of happiness. Times gone by. Or listen for the sounds of the locomotives that no longer run this country side.
There are places along the way that make you want to take off your biking sandals and put your feet in the waters while you sit upon the rocks.
There are a few places that tempt you with comfort. But having received permission last week from those wiser than myself, we enjoyed the comforts. Shout out to Beech Creek Project!
The preferred food of cyclists every where.
Then we went to the cemetery.
And Hattie was gone!
When we were here years ago the cemetery was not well maintained and there were many more stones still visible. Before, we could walk from the bike trail in to the cemetery. Now, the cemetery has been fenced in. We had to ride our bikes around and go in through a gate. Before, the grass was wild and growing taller than some of the stones. Now, someone is cutting the grass. And the stones are disappearing. I found many half buried and many, where I knew them to have been, are gone. I wanted to scrape the ground back because I knew inches below the surface were the markers of lives lived. But I didn’t want to cross boundaries. It was not my cemetery. It was not my ground to disturb.
We left with out finding Hattie’s stone.
I wonder if this tree was here when Hattie was buried a hundred years ago?
I guess if nothing else it will make me think even more of her. Did someone remove her stone? Or is buried under years of grass cuttings and shifting ground.
We finished our ride under the sunny skies. Heading back to where we had come from. Enjoying the beauty and glad we each brought a friend along….
Years from now I’ll probably go back again wondering if stones are restored or history posted. Until then I’ll wonder about this Hattie on occassion.
And maybe start searching for other mysteries to wonder about.
Not that I need an excuse to go for a bike ride.
But it’s kind of nice that our bike rides often have stories. Or, our stories often have bike rides.