Saturday, August 13, 2011

Saying "No" to Ticks and Wondering While Wondering

Bless the generous owners of the beautiful ranchland around the morros of San Luis Obispo County. As Hurley and I hiked this morning on the Johnson Trail, I  occasionally swerved away from some of the brush and wild flowers growing wildly over the trail sides.  "Ticks, Hurley, watch out for ticks... ", I thought.  As I did, the immediate feeling I got is of dread, as I have personally known people who have suffered from terrible Lyme Disease - Truly No Joke - a tragic, life long infection to have.   Then in after a moment that fear turns to gratitude and praise for the great fortune to having a trail to walk upon, the open space to explore.   I don't want the fear of ticks or disease to deter me.  In, fact, having these extraordinary places to hike is priceless and an incredible act of generosity by the families who own the land.  Thank you Thank you to those families, who entrust the public to hike on their property, treat it and the animals with respect and leave it nicer than when we found it.  Additionally, as I hiked along, I realized the freedom and beauty of these great outdoor areas is "walkable and passable" because of a handful of people, the trailworkers.  I wondered who they are and how brave they must be to  face the ticks.  How dusty and sweaty they must get by the end of a day, but how happy knowing the great deed they have done.  I was so grateful for these people who volunteer, spend their free time, along the paths cutting back the excess brush.  They make the way clear for the hundreds of us who walk right on in through the trail head marker, feeling like we are coming home... almost like it belongs to US!  Thank you to all of them!
As Hurley and I turned the last bend to come into view of civilization: the parking lot,  there was a group of five people putting up a sign.  I wondered if it was like our recent posting at our beach..." Shark Warning" but instead "Wild Pig Warning".  Not at all.... the sign said "Trail Work Day"
inviting others to join in.  I told them how much I had thought about the wonderful work they do and how all of us hikers should be singing their praises.   They shyly allowed me to take their photo.
Nice answer to wondering while I wandered.