After nearly a week on the couch recovering from my wisdom teeth extraction I went out in full force today, going for a bike ride in the morning, then driving over to the East Bay to hike with my good friend Aaron in Walnut Creek.
Little did I know, the East Bay, specifically the area near Walnut Creek, Concord and Fremont is gifted with a vast amount of open space land. Aaron has only to walk two blocks to enter the open space where he has days of trail open to him to explore. The trails connect across various open spaces in different cities, and lead up to the summit of Mt. Diablo, which i can see across the bay from my own house.
We didn't get started until after six, but in the California summer, it may as well have been the middle of the day. The sun was shining bright and warm, with a gentle breeze rustling the endless dry grass that reached waist height in some levels.
Putting yourself in a beautiful place while doing an activity you love is a magnificent way to breed great conversation. In three hours of hiking, we went from our love of nature, to our hopes for the future, to ecological reasoning behind the lack of open space in our school town Tacoma. A good friend from school, I won't be seeing Aaron for over 14 months as I'm about to head off for Tawonga then Paris.
Back at his house, I spoke with his mother about the benefit of living so close to the trails, which played a major role in their decision to choose their house. As she said, 'Aaron grew up there, their dogs had whole lifetimes in the open space, it is so full of memories." To have a natural expanse that you can call home is very special, the trails will always be familiar yet the experiences different every time. I'm pretty jealous of their proximity.