Tomorrow marks three years since I splashed my poor tired feet into the Pacific Ocean at Limantour Beach on the Point Reyes National Seashore, ending my crazyass coast to coast walk across America. In some ways it seems like a lifetime ago, in others it was just yesterday. (You should read my book. Or re-read it - it's pretty good!)
The overarching purpose of the walk, as some of you may remember, was to raise money and awareness for a recreation trail, the San Benito River Parkway, in my home county. Progress has been glacially slow, with a one-mile section (out of the designated eighteen miles) complete and another three miles or so kinda sorta in the works. The problem seems to be that this rural county has such a small tax base from which to fund a long list of broken things that need to be fixed.
Just to the north of us is Santa Clara County, home of San Jose, Silicon Valley, and the San Francisco Forty-Niners. There is no tax base problem there - just a gargantuan, nearly constant traffic jam and obscene, skyrocketing housing costs. One of the perks of having money for Santa Clara County Public Works is their Coyote Creek Parkway, a hiking/biking trail that goes from the outskirts of Morgan Hill to the ankle socks of San Jose along nicely preserved Coyote Creek. That is where I went today with the Dream Machine to spin my wheels in the sunshine for an hour and a half. On the way, I went through gentrified downtown Morgan Hill, where they just installed a bunch of artsy bike racks. I love artsy bike racks! Check out my Just Bike Racks blog some time.
I saw lots of other cyclists enjoying the trail, mostly solo riders, with a few couples. I always wave and smile, whether I am walking or riding, not because I want to stop and converse or anything like that. It is more like a personal effort to shine light into the other person/people. I don't care what they do with the light. I just want them to know they are not alone in the dark. It's an act of personal revolution, a peaceful statement from my insides against the machines of darkness and war. It makes me feel good.
My favorite parts of the trail were the sections near the water. There were lots of trees, tule reeds, cattails, and water fowl there. Wildlife abounds, making you wonder how it must have looked before the Missions and the Gold Rush.
Peace, Love, and Rec Trails,