On the paths that crisscross my neighborhood, there are wild things down by the creek, and tame things that hang over the back yard fences. This Cécile Brunner rose was a welcome sight; I stopped for a spell to pull a branch down to my face and sniff. We removed our own C.B. not long ago so I’m thankful to share this one, glad the owner doesn’t mind, or doesn’t notice, it trailing in a friendly way over the fence.
I’m trying to try, to resist my sedentary ways and go for more walks in the neighborhood, just normal brisk walks — or slower if my camera is along — of the sort humans have liked to do in many times and places, before the days when so many of us had gym memberships.
After passing by several tall Coast Redwood trees with bright new needles, about five minutes from my house I come to a bridge across the creek. It crosses right where two creeks come together, right in the middle of town.
From the bridge there’s a view of the unpaved path closer to the creek, where you can walk free of bicycle and stroller traffic.
Roses, honeysuckle, figs and potato vine hang over the fences at various points.
This fig tree used to dangle its fruit lower down where I could actually eat some in season, but now it’s too tall.
Where the path intersects a major road I like to look down from another bridge to see this lush growth in the creek bed. After the creek bed dries up in the middle of summer, the fennel and blackberries and willows will still be making it green down there, and eucalyptus trees will hang over the paths for shade.
When I turn around and cross to the east side of that road, I can look up toward the hills that are the source of those creeks. On this morning the fog was staying late up there, so you can’t see the tops of the hills.
But in this next picture you can see the line of trees revealing where one creek runs down.
There’s a giant old rosebush at the edge of the field, which makes some lovely blooms in spite of being neglected by men.
I’ve seen two varieties of salsify along the path this spring — or at least two colors. A mountain woman friend of mine used to dig salsify roots to cook for a vegetable, but I never think about that plant until the flowers are blooming, at which point I’m pretty sure the roots would be tough.
My walking loop brings me past the neighborhood school and park, where our children used to climb these redwood trees — no mean feat — in the days before the city started trimming off the lower branches.
And then I’m passing by that first bridge again, and almost home. If I haven’t stopped to take too many pictures, it’s only taken me an hour.