If I were a tourist…
Today, the tour bus that was taking me on my travels through beautiful British Columbia, stopped in Cache Creek.
Maybe I was travelling from Kamloops, on a beautiful winding highway past lakes that seemed untouched by man, vast open fields with cattle and hay crops under constant irrigation to turn them in wonderful patches of green against the brown vegetation of the hills. Every turn of the highway revealed new vistas to stimulate my senses. Maybe I should come back here someday.
Maybe I was traveling down from Williams Lake and observed the forest that comes down to the highway with the many large and small lakes with large flocks of waterfowl. Perhaps I dreamed of catching rainbow trout, maybe I should come back here some day.
Maybe I was travelling from the South, through the famous Fraser Canyon, watching the sunlight play on the walls of the Canyon highlighting features which would bring out the artist or photographer in anybody. At Lytton, we turned into the Thompson River Valley and saw the landscape slowly turn from forest to northern desert with sagebrush and wild grasses. You could see forever! Past ranches old and new. Log houses that tell of a family’s struggle to survive in this sometimes harsh, beautiful land. Maybe I will come back this way again.
As we pass by the Ashcroft Ranch I see a sign saying Cache Creek is a short distance ahead. I think of an oasis in this dry country.
As we drive into Cache Creek, I notice signs of a progressive crossroads Village – a new Library under construction, a beautification project with trees and flowers being planted. Motels and restaurants for the tired and hungry travellers. Beautiful houses on the surrounding hills. By coincidence, the buses stopped in what appeared to be an abandoned shopping plaza called the Oasis.
In order to stretch my legs, I decided to walk along the storefronts of the Plaza and look in the windows. Obviously the stores were not cleaned after they were closed as I see garment hangers and other debris all over the floors. I continued to walk. In the next store I see “lumps” of something all over the floor, concentrated at the doorway and under the windows. Then, to my horror, I realize what the “lumps” are – piles of dead pigeon carcasses. One store looks like it has hundreds of them, others only one or two. It was obvious they had been there a long time.
What kind of property owner would allow this to happen? What kind of a Community would allow a property owner to be so cruel to birds who were just looking for a warm place to roost.
What kind of a Community would allow this to continue?
IF I were a tourist, I would NOT stop again in Cache Creek, and I would tell this story to my friends.