Today to celebrate the first day of the Chinese New Year of the Rat a group of 6 riders met up in Nipomo to take a stroll around the Mesa, the highly developed Trilogy zone that was once, in the lifetime of several of the riders, entirely vast forests of eucalyptus.
We rode for 6 miles in 2 hours, following the trails that weave through the manicured landscapes and the remnants of the forest.
The best parts of riding Nipomo are the stands of giant trees that are still left, lining the roads, and the horse and human trails that have been carefully built into the landscape.
It is certainly not wild, but it isn't entirely civilized yet, either.
It was disturbing to see many signs advertising large plots of land for sale, and clearly time is running out for the grasslands and trees.
From every path there were houses visible, and golf courses.
That little blip is a man sighting down his next stroke.
Because their movements are erratic the golfers are fascinating to Tobe.
Recent rains have caused a fine crop of mystery mushrooms to spring up.
Tobe and I just give them a look, and leave well enough alone.
Even on the forest trails the fallen trees are evidence of how fragile their 100+ year old stands are now.
Nice there wasn't much wind today. It was warm and sunny, just like we prefer California to always be.
Which was not a smart idea, since the hill was extremely soft, and Tobe's feet sunk in it and it was dangerous.
Stormy & Pico came to help us down.
Then it was back to the paths between estates that have vineyards for lawns.
The problem is
that every inch of the flat land has been filled with stucco houses that look as if they are meant to last 2-3 decades at best.
But no point in being nostalgic,
I'm happy that as they transformed the landscape they worked hard to incorporate the equestrian trails, and make it easy for the inhabitants to walk their dogs and ride bikes.
And I'm glad we are welcome to come and roam around and experience it all.
Then it was time to end our ride, so I asked everyone to pose in front of a stand of eucalyptus for a souvenir portrait.
But are we forgetting something?
The symbolism of the special day?
The beginning of the Year of the Golden Rat needed a visual.
And what could be better than Jamie's chihuahua who stayed guarding her tow vehicle as we rode out.
Feliz Año Nuevo de El Miguelitó Rattón!
2020 Chinese New Year is on January 25, 2020. That is the 4717th Chinese year. The zodiac sign of 2020 is the Rat. According to the Chinese zodiac calendar, 2020 is the Male Metal Rat year. The color of Metal in Chinese Horoscope is connected to white or golden. Therefore, 2020 is called the year of the White Metal Rat or Golden Rat.
---FIN---PAT FISH -