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Travels With AJ: Take a Walk on the Wild Side in Geneva

We do see a lot of wildlife in our travels.

Foxes, squirrels, beaver, rabbits, chipmunks, deer, muskrats, raccoons, possum, skunks, coyotes—you name it, we see it in on our walks.

As you've probably notices in some of our other "Travels," one of our favorite walks is from our house along the north side of to the bike path that runs along to the Fox River and back.

It's amazing that we can live in the heart of a city and at the same time walk a few steps and feel like we're in the wilderness. It's easy to see why folks wanted to settle here—it is beautiful and the list of animals we see sounds like a narrative by Lewis and Clark, the or a .

You'll see among these photos a fawn sleeping in the brush along the bike path. Our neighbors told us the fawn didn't survive—a victim of coyotes.

Unfortunately, my pet photographer, Rick, is lousy with a camera. (He blames me for going ballistic right when he's about to shoot, but we know better. Talent is talent. Or not.)

There's another photo here that's a blur, but one of the lumps is a beaver. We've walked along the river while he (she?) swims parallel to the shore. We wonder, with all the high water, if she (he?) feels frustrated—all that work to create a dam and the water keeps rising.

Foxes live under one of the cottages at Good Templar Park, we are told. Earlier in the spring, we saw the offspring, often.

We haven't mentioned the birds and probably shouldn't. But the woodpeckers are the first to announce the coming of spring with their Gatling-gun rat-a-tat in the trees, and the ducks and geese are plentiful and fun to scatter, if you're a red-blooded American dog.

Yes, there are mosquitoes and biting flies and poison ivy in them thar woods, but the life around us is thrilling, and being outside is priceless, even in this .

The fireflies already are diminishing from their fireworks peak around the first week of July, and today, we noticed the mighty oak trees have sprouted their little acorns. It won't be all that long before the heat begins to fade.

Enjoy your summer wild life, while it lasts.

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