Joan Dorsey
Contributing Columnist
As a little girl my Dad would take me for walks outside. It was a great way to get me out from under Mom’s feet for a while, it kept me quiet, and he got outside after working all day.
Dad would find a rock of interest, and I would have a new treasure. My love-respect for rocks has always been with me.
Every vacation, every road trip I look for interesting rocks. I don’t really do it on purpose. It just happens. If I don’t come home with a small rock, well I was just not trying.
My house has rocks found everywhere. I have geodes and fossils. I have round rocks and some with holes in them.
I used to scour our driveway when I was a kid. It always had small fossils and sparkly little treasures. I never questioned why? Well we mine limestone here for driveways. The quarried and crushed product makes roads and concrete surfaces.
I remember going with a friend and her family. Her mom liked to bird watch. We went to Baldwin Lake. I found a whole slope of “gravel” just loaded with pieces of fossils. I still have some of them.
Our first home in Edgerton, on Nelson, had a stone fence post that held our mailbox. That rock was brought from western Kansas, post rock country.
We had it drilled to put in supports for the mailbox. Last i knew it was still there on the corner of 1st and Nelson in Edgerton. There was also an almost round rock in a flower bed of mine. It had rolled and rolled inside a rock crusher till it resembled a very large bowling ball.
When we built our second home we used local quarried rocks and built terraces on the sides.
I married into a family who was also into rocks. My second Dad worked in quarries and with machines that crushed rocks for most of his life.
He knows the value of good rock. I used to know the name of the rock ledges that run under most of Johnson County and Miami County.
I am always excited to see a flower bed or rock garden full of smooth Colorado River rock. It seems very peaceful to me.
Last fall on my neighborhood walks, people were leaving hand painted rocks randomly along the walkways. There were some very talented folks painting on rocks.
I have always wondered about the rocks wired to the wooden fences in Douglas County. I looked for information and didn’t find out who put them there or why.
My head may be full of rocks. I can guarantee if I went camping there would be one under my sleeping bag, or in my shoe.
Collecting a rock here and there is a pretty inexpensive hobby. I usually remember where they came from and the fun involved in the trip.
They may not be high fashion or deep literature. They may not grow or change but let’s face it without rocks we wouldn’t have roads, or buildings or homes. Rocks, as they say, are here to stay.