The city beautiful

So I’m co-opting a phrase from urban planning, but somehow it fits.  This is the first trail I ever ran on, at least since my cross country days a million years ago.  Soon after I moved here, I went out to run around the park well within city limits, expecting to stick to the streets.  As I was running, I saw this entrance, and couldn’t resist checking it out.  It was a warm day, before the drought began, so it was much muddier that day than it is now.  It seemed like I was sloshing through the mud with every step I took and it was the most fun I ever had!

This bridge (on the right) almost brought me to a stop.  It’s pretty hard to run across a bridge that narrow, with missing boards and a bit of a torque in the middle.  But, I was having too much fun to turn around and go back to the boring road, so I went across.  I ran for a bit, then came across this bridge, and then this one.  None of them felt sturdy, but that made it even more fun.  Somewhere in here, I saw a gator.  I don’t remember exactly where, but that began a love affair with wildlife viewing on the run.  It was much too cold and dry for gators today.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I have a thing for roots.  These ones really got me today.  I love their reaching fingers and I dream of making buildings as wonderful as this.  Can you imagine being inside this and looking out from your forest lair?  A round of structure, with one side dipped into the water, the other firmly on the ground?  Or perhaps, a tunnel of a building, with space between the ribs?  And green glass, it would have to have green glass to bath everything in the green of sunlight through the trees.

One of the weird and wonderful things about this trail is that it runs right next to a major road.  There you are, in the peacefulness of the swamp, with the sound of traffic constantly running next to you.  It is somewhat disturbing in its oddness, but at the same time, comforting.  There is no chance of getting lost deep in this trail; no chance that you will run across a man eater miles from civilization.  For a first timer on a trail, that’s a comforting thought.


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