Thursday Doors–Don’t Tell Mom

It is a door. It’s meant to keep us on the land side of this catwalk, but it’s open.

I left something out of the Urban Hike post last week. It was a planned omission because I wanted to save a little bit of sightseeing for Norm’s Thursday Doors series.

We spied this door while heading north from Charter Oak Landing toward Hartford. The catwalk leading out to the door looked a little dangerous, but very interesting, in other words, compelling. One or both of us said “we probably shouldn’t go out there” but the door was open. The catwalk looked sturdy enough. We could easily get out there, get some pictures and get back safely. My editor needs to know that we always consider safety.

I am not sure what this structure is. Maybe it is/was some sort of fuel transfer thing. It’s not like the Connecticut River is a heavy shipping lane, but there are a couple of cruise ships party boats plying the waters in and around Hartford, they must need fuel. On the other hand, we weren’t too far south of the steam generation plant operated by Hartford Steam, so maybe this is a way for them to unload fuel from barges. Then again, maybe this was something that was used by Colt Firearms in the 50s and everybody forgot about it. One thing was certain, Faith was gonna want to take some pictures of it.

If you scroll through Faith’s and my Flickr accounts, you will find numerous combinations of me taking a photo of her taking a photo and, eventually, the photo that she took.

Sometimes I watch as she’s taking a photo and I think “what on earth is that girl doing?” I also sometimes think “why is this taking so long?” Occasionally, I think “I’m not sure she should be doing that/going there,” but not often, she really is pretty careful. Editor, did you get that? Really, she is careful. And, her results are always worth the wait. Sometimes, the photo opportunity results in a “Don’t tell mom moment” (DTMM).

Most DTMMs have been revealed to mom/wife over time. The first DTMM that I remember was when Faith was about six and we were driving my red Dodge 4×4 out of Spring Park the “back way” a.k.a. through the woods. I’m not sure if it was related to our activity, but the Parks and Recreation folks have since put barricades on each end of that exit road pickup-truck-wide-path. Anyway, we weren’t the first people to discover that path. We were sometimes the first to use it. That’s because I used to get Faith up early so we could go for a ride in the truck before the plows came and ruined everything cleared the snow from the streets.

One day, we noticed tire tracks turning to the left, off the path. Faith asked (yes, I am throwing her under the bus on this) “where does that go?” Having no idea, I simply turned left to find out. It – didn’t – go – anywhere! The tracks ended, abruptly, at the edge of a cliff. OK, it was really only a severe drop-off-point but it would have required a tow truck to get us out (and this was before cell phones). Fortunately, that big Dodge stopped as well as it went in the snow. We backed out, and exited the park. Faith looked at me and said “is this something we should tell mom?

No, honey, not right now. I’ll tell mom later.”

I did tell mom later…about 18 years later but the point is I told her.

As for the catwalk out to the pump-thingie, Faith posted her pictures on Flickr within a week. Mom might still be trying to figure out whether she raised an irresponsible child or married one, but she’ll have to accept that we are curious adults who always exercise appropriate caution. Really. Always.

68 thoughts on “Thursday Doors–Don’t Tell Mom

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  1. Great door because it led to an adventure and more time with your daughter. :-) My grandparents lived on a small dairy farm in upstate NH. There was a single-lane road through the woods that my grandmother refused to go on but my grandfather would if I begged. I loved that road because I knew I would be on the edge of the seat until we got to the exit. What would we see? Would another car approach us? Animals run in front? To this day when we drive past that road, I smile and think of all those good memories. Faith will have lots of those Dad ‘aha’ moments to remember and that is always a good thing. :-)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Judy. Those moments are very special indeed. I have many memories of back roads and short cuts that my father would take, some on some questionable roads. I love the simple adventures that you can find without buying a day-pass.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s the door to some adventure. I love such spooky and left out spaces where no one bothers you. I’ve done such investigations alone and unfortunately I had no camera then. I even once went to a broken home in the rural area which people claimed to be haunted. The funny part was that I came to know about it being haunted after my brief visit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do love exploring places like this. It always makes for an interesting adventure. It’s only in recent years that I’ve been carrying a camera too. Oh well, I have the memories.


  3. Cool! I’d definitely have explored that too, who could resist – but being me, I’d probably have ended up in the river through not being careful enough. It would have been a case of – does this hold my weight – crash – nope, I guess not! :-)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There was no way we were walking by this Ruth. I think having a camera leads you to being more adventurous. I was glad to see, from the other side of the river, that this was pretty sturdy. Faith is a lightweight, but she was testing and inspecting that grate before getting in that little concrete thing.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Dan, Love you & Faith’s photo adventures! This out of the way one the perfect DTMM adventure. My kids had a few of those “moments,” and hearing them years later made me “shudder.” Probably a good thing I didn’t know about those “close calls.” Christine

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I wondered if anyone ever went slightly off-script on doors (having snapped a tiny ant hill opening on Tuesday and thinking … hmmm … would this qualify?)

    This was a great exploration and I’m glad you and Faith ventured forth (safely, of course).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 1) Thank you. 2) Safely, of course. Always our primary concern. 3) I think the opening to an ant hill qualifies as a door. I mean, it’s the opening through which they enter. Go for it, it’s not like there are Thursday Doors police :)

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you both for taking us with you on your father daughter adventures. Cherish these moments. I know you must. Some of my best photo moments have been along side my father, he driving the pickup, and heeding my advice to STOP! *laughs* As I take a picture…he got so good at knowing where my eyes were leading to on many days. Great memories…sigh.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Love the catwalk! Excellent pictures!
    I don’t think we have DTMM or DTDM, but I wouldn’t be sad if they did, I think it’s precious y’all do :)
    Sometimes I slip one of the kids a piece of dinner before it’s done and I place my finger over my lips. I usually do this with my son, cause he’s a hover-er, but you know hover-ers are really hungry and if their siblings were hungry, they’d be hovering, too ;)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I don’t think we have any “open” DTMM, but we’re going on a hike in a few weeks, so… My grandmother used to slip me samples of her baked goods before I would have dinner. That’s a good thing.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m pretty sure there’s a sub-paragraph in the ol’ Parenting Handbook that excuses DTMMs if you use “appropriate caution.” So I think you’re free and clear, Dan!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Lois. We’ve experimented with the time lag. I think it was two years when I accidentally slipped a picture of Faith climbing on a bridge next to a sign that said “No Climbing on Bridge Structure” – that wasn’t long enough.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Dan, this is strange had to fill in all the “fields” with name, email and WP info today to make a comment. We were just talking about glitches. . . .
    I like you and your daughter’s adventures, Dan. (Don’t tell mother moments included.) The snowy park with a path ending at a cliff was scary.This catwalk with open door was cool looking. The structure looked sturdy but rusty. I would be okay with my own photographer daughter going out on that. I worry more about cliff climbing or the sort of natural environment crumbling and dissolving the earth under her feet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Robin. If you work with the WP folks, you do have to provide a bunch of info, but that’s normal for good technical support. They need to be able to follow-up if they have questions.

      Faith and I did check the catwalk for condition before venturing out there. We do worry, but things like this are rare opportunities.


  10. I love a good dare-devil adventure story. My 3yr old is a bit of a dare-devil just like her dad and I. I’m looking forward to when she’s older and we can go hiking together since her dad had no patience for it. Here’s to fun adventures! Have a great weekend :)

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks!
        Currently our adventures (to the playground, park, grocery, library or wherever) end with her crying and me wanting to cry so not much fun yet.

        Looking forward to when we can go to the movies, museum, concerts and other great places. :)

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Your photos adventures with your daughter are really great. These moments last forever in our memories. Enjoy, as I’m sure you are. I’m sure my husband and kids have their share of DTMM as I also have a few DTDM! Great photos as always.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Deborah. Like I said above, I’m sure there have been DTDMs over time that still haven’t been revealed. I think it’s easier to see the danger in actions others are taking than actions we might take.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I would have thrown caution to the wind but my wife would have seen the catwalk and said “No way!” so goes life, it is an adventure and we must take a few chances to really appreciate it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is why my wife doesn’t go with us. She knows that she would hold us back from some aspects of the adventure. Although, if she were there alone with my daughter, I’d bet it would be a DTDad moment.


  13. Mom might still be trying to figure out whether she raised an irresponsible child or married one, but she’ll have to accept that we are curious adults who always exercise appropriate caution. Really. Always.

    That bit cracked me up.

    Such lovely dad-daughter moments, though. I’m sure your daughter appreciates your times together as much as you do.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I know I just said this in my last comment, Dan, but seriously, once again you could be relating a story from MY life! Honestly, there was (is!) NO place that my dad wouldn’t (won’t!) venture if it looked (looks!) interesting. There were many, many DTMMs in our house too! But the thing is, before I came along, it was mom who was the (un)willing participant in all of dad’s crazy adventures, so even when neither of us told her where we had REALLY been or what dangerous, er, I mean, “fun within the confines of safe” thing we had done… I think she already knew!

    Anyway, a cool and unusual door, Dan. One that I really enjoyed seeing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is so cool Wendy. I love these adventures and they really have been safe (I mean, we are all still here, not that that;s the only measure of safe). There’s just something so special about sharing these experiences. I’m glad you can relate!

      Liked by 1 person

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