Friday, September 14, 2007

Living in an urban area, most natural experiences tend to be orchestrated (drive to the hills), rodent-based (rats surprising you in the ivy), or surrounded by asphalt and people (go to the zoo, go to the park built at the junction of two expressways). We're lucky to have the Bay so close, but most folks still gotta pile into a car or crowd onto a bus to get to it.

Well, the asphalt was still there today, but I took a long walk with my sugarlump around our neighborhood and the surrounding neighborhoods and we witnessed:

1) two crows chase a peregrine falcon away from their nest
2) 16 honking geese flying really low (luckily not over our heads!)
3) a tiny, cobalt hummingbird with a scarlet throat take leisurely dips into every single flower on a bush in our apartment building's backyard, when we went outside to sip punch while the sun went down

I regularly see families of fat, impassive raccoons (squee! -- not impassive, me) and creepy possums lurking in the shadows when I ride my bike or walk in the evening, and both my hubby and I saw a baby skunk squeeze through the chain-link last night.

I'm lucky I walk and ride my bike most places and don't iPod or yak on a mobile when I'm out and about, because I think these animal activities are things you totally miss out on when you drive and/or zone. I really miss living in the backwoods sometimes, so it's these little bits that keep me going.

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Blogger Trevor said...

Couldn't agree more--who says there's no nature in the city?

September 18, 2007 at 11:31:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Knaak said...

one of the things I remember about living in Oakland was the possums. we had this duck pond near our house, and I remember the scum and algea on it. the family irish setter, patty, capable of vertically leaping into the air and catching birds mid-flight, also provided exciting action.
The large backyard was thick with foliage, and the garden grew rhubarb and asparagus and artichoke and other things.. corn, tomatoes, etc.

The yard had a cement wall on the uphill side- 20' tall at the highest, chainlink on the back and downhill side.. which dropped off 5' into a parking lot where I rode my "Green Machine" on occasion.

The qualia I recall of Oakland was of a general "used" feel- though expressed as stains on concrete, sidewalks with overgrown cracks, and tracts of towering trees sprouting up and over the hyper-developed landscape of cement overpasses and more cement and more and more.


September 22, 2007 at 7:54:00 PM PDT  

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