Tisdale's Secret Park

FTLComm - Tisdale - April 26, 1999
The site that was once the setting of Tisdale's Roman Catholic run hospital is now a really marvellous park with the shrine commemorating the work of the Sisters in the hospital and walkways and this neat hillside. Above is a QuickTime VR panorama of this site the scene you will see in a moment as it downloads to you is looking up from near the path by the creek. As you move around the scene notice that your cursor will turn from a circle to an arrow. When that happens you have come across another panorama from another point of view that will let you look back from where you were looking. This is a two node panorama. (QuickTime 4.0 is now available for downloading and there will be more on that tomorrow or the next day in Ensign)
While I was make these photographs, (there are more then fifty images in this double panorama) I had an unsettling event take place and it seems important to mention it here because my guess is it is a sign of the times. A small girl, perhaps three years of age came rattling down a walkway in the park on a tricycle. Besides me and my camera there was no one else in this large park and I was extra ordinarily unsettled. A little girl should not be out there alone and at the same time it was me, not her who felt endangered. I avoided her and did not speak, nor smile toward her, I did not want her to think that an old guys in a park is safe and friendly.

I was enormously relieved when I saw a mother almost a block away looking about and appearing to be searching for that little girl. I waved to her and went over to her and pointed out the little girl was in the park and really shouldn't be out there on her own. My comments were not for her safety I was thinking about myself. And, as a consequence I have decided I will make sure that I do not enter that park or any other alone and without some one with me. I assure you that I am not really paranoid but I am concerned that we are approaching a time when a man alone is no longer free to walk about.

I am certain that it is my background as a counsellor and school administrator that makes me think this way, but I am sensing major changes in our society. As a principal, it was in 1981 that I decided I would under no circumstances give a female student a ride home after some event or whatever. I cautioned my staff at the time and from then on if some situation developed where a child need to be taken home or somewhere I made sure I was escorted or that my staff member had someone else with them. I find it hard to pass someone on a road seeking a ride and when I do stop and pick some one up I will let a man ride in the front seat but if it is a female or two females I have them ride in the back. I would suggest that this is prudent. However, it is a sad commentary on our freedom and our desire to offer aid to others.