Saturday, February 26, 2011

Parks and Exploration - Going through Green Spaces in East Bay

Something that I love about the Bay Area is the number of parks.  Friday we decided to explore some of them.  Fortunately the storm that had been making it's way south decided to miss us entirely allowing for a rain free walk through the mud.

I put on my new plaid galoshes and we made our way to the first park off of Heyer in Castro Valley. A little park by a stream, complete with enclosed dog park kept by the Rotary Club, playground, and a little bridge to the houses across the little chocolate colored stream called home by several duck pairs.  It was quaint, with locals who brought their large dogs to hang-out in the park.  Christian and I kept thinking about how no children were there.  No mothers with strollers or anything.  When we were growing up the playgrounds were always full of kids and parents playing.  It's no wonder why there's an obesity epidemic in the U.S. today when the parks are empty.

The second park we went to was Cull Canyon.  If I was going to make a park for people to swim, play outdoor games, and have a BBQ I would have designed this place.  It was green, manicured in the right places, and wild in the rest.  The only thing that was a drag was the fact that the walking path went through the tunnel which also served as the path for the stream. Seeing as the water was several feet deep, we didn't make our way through the tunnel.  Still, I would suggest the park on a sunny day for a party or family get together. 

After a muddy walk along the Bay Ridge Trail, we came to a budding swamp that prevented Christian from going any further in his Vans.  We decided to check out one last park.  This one was on the other side of the 580 freeway. When we got to this park, complete with a lagoon, fishing dock, and dry swimming hole.  It looked like the California budget was impacting the upkeep of this forlorn park.  The trail had been overcome by water and branches, as well as being overgrown with weeds and grasses.  How could we let these beautiful parks go by the wayside?  Oh I remember.  Our government is unwilling to cut spending on useless things peddled by military contractors as well as taxing the richest one percent.  So I guess we'll just have to suffer with only a few well kept parks and a whole bunch that are overtaken by a lack of resources. 

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