the freedom of the trails in my neighborhood.

funny… when i hike i don’t usually socialize or stop to talk to anyone. unless , for example, a hiker’s dog comes up to me and starts being ultra friendly, then i stop to say a word or two. today was a bit different. i ran up a smaller trail – a trail that isn’t very much used. and as i ran up an young man asked if he was on the right trail to go back to the parking lot. i pointed him in the right direction… “in about 200 feet you’ll reach the bottom, and stick to the right side down then hill. you can’t miss it- parking lot on the left…”
i continued up. running up. winded. an older man with a stick asked me if there were any water fountains near by. “not really closest one is by Tree people and it’ll take you about 15 minutes to get there…”
he continues down the hill and i make my way up. a young men stops me and tell me there’s a rattle snake ‘sunning’ up about 30 yards where all the trees meet. whoops! be careful , he tells me as he points to where it is. i thank him and continue up watching the trail and the path. a little nervous. for sure.
i lizard crosses the narrow path and my heart stops. i laugh a little. and continue. yikes shirtless man was not kidding. TWO rattlers. he said a rattler. not a couple. i continue… don’t even stop…i’m too nervous. and i notice no one else is on that trail anymore. uh, where is everyone?
i make my way to tree people. get a drink of water. run down the rest of the way to up to the michael jackson trail. double back and i see a few people. phew! i get another drink of water. and walk up the hill. i see a man taking the little less traveled trail where the snakes were. i stop and tell him to be careful up there because there are some snakes sunning. he seems a little nervous and is a bit apprehensive to continue. says it’s his first time there. i told him to watch his step and that i’m sure the snakes were just sun bathing. it’s the season and the hour. warm out there… springtime and the weather is perfect for snakes and people.
all this… make me think my existence in my neighborhood was some what valid. at least for a 20 minutes or so in the trail. or something like that. nothing. that’s it. maybe it was my gatsby moment: “….freedom of the neighborhood…”

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