Occasionally, Amy Marks comes home to find a bowling ball at her doorstep. “There’s no note with it or anything,” she says. “Somebody just left it and I have no idea who it was.” People bring them to her because she’s the bowling ball lady of Dallas. Instead of planting colorful blooms (she says she’s “lousy at flowers”), Marks paints bowling balls and arranges them in the garden of her Capri Drive home. “I’m up to 97 now,” she says. Marks is an artist who recently won accolades at the State Fair of Texas for her handmade dolls. But for fun, she searches thrift stores, garage sales and flea markets for old bowling balls. They’re harder to find than they used to be, she says. And many thrift stores don’t sell them for fear of some kid lobbing one across the store. Marks remembers that she and her nephew once found seven balls in one red-letter day. The bowling ball garden of Capri Drive will continue to grow, she says. “Of course, now I want 100.”

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