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April 22, 2017


Trying to say "Look!" -- what a wonderful way to describe what you do, in so many forms, in so many ways.

That's an illuminating account of an inspiring rapport, Beth. It's marvellous when destiny or chance or whatever is or isn't watching over us brings a guide, a mentor on our path. Herm (was his name Herman?) certainly sounds like one of those angels. Any photos?

Is this the same person or a relative of his?


The thought of you and Herm laying out nature trails all over New York State. What a passing on -- I don't mean Herm's tragic death, but his spirit in you.

Thank you, Rachel.

Natalie - glad you liked this. I really don't have any good photos but I can see him clearly. The person you've cited in the second comment was his adoptive father.

Peter - I wonder what happened to all of those trails and nature centers - the DEC ran four, and I believe they've closed them all, but some of the places we went were state parks or forests, or even more local/regional areas, where Herm had been asked to consult. I think the real legacy was in the education of students groups who came to Rogers from all over the place, and the teachers who came to the teacher workshops we ran every summer to learn how to incorporate nature and the environment in their classroom teaching. They were elementary and secondary teachers of nearly every subject, but totally keen on ecology and the outdoors. The workshops were a week long and included a very rustic camp-out in the Brookfield state forest, all meals, classes, and evening programs and camaraderie. Great fun, and a lot of learning that must have spread out in ways we can't possibly measure.

I suppose this might be thought of as an ancient herm, topped by the face of your mentor--a metaphysical herm rather than one of stone.

" . . . a lot of learning that must have spread out in ways we can't possibly measure." Yes!

This is such a wonderful tribute and makes me feel nostalgic for the kind of love of and understanding of nature that was more common once than in is today. I do have a niece who worked very hard to establish an interpretive center in her town in Washington State, which is very popular, and my sister volunteers at a bird refuge in the San Francisco Bay Area. There are still a lot of nature lovers out west; I was noticing more young people on the trails last time I went hiking in the Volcanoes National Park here on Hawaii Island.
It seems as if the current taste is for the spectacular: lave flows, huge storms, etc. rather than the less sensational aspects of nature that take time and thought to appreciate. So that is a loss.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.