I recently moved to Davis after living in San Francisco for over eight years. "For godssake, why Davis?" many a friend lamented. Practically, it was because my fiancé Matt is getting his graduate degree at UC Davis. Emotionally, I was ready for a change. And quite the change it's been...
One big thing that attracted me to Davis is its uber-cool bike attitude. My friend Jill invited me on a bike ride early in the week. By the weekend, it had gotten to be pretty rainy, so I wasn't sure if we'd still go. Come Saturday, it was a bit wet, but not so bad. When Jill called and asked me if I was still up for it, I said sure, what the heck.
Jill wanted to show me this special place that she likes to take her dog Mani for walks. First, we headed up through the Community Park at F and Covell and then crossed through to one of these areas in Davis called the Greenbelt. Yes, it's lovely and green, and you can walk or ride these lovely paths all through the Greenbelt areas and not encounter cars for a nice long while. Early on the loop, we passed by a neat public art sculpture called the "Domino Effect II" by Eddie Hood (I later researched). It’s four huge dominoes in the middle of this grassy wooded area -- reminded me of Claes Oldenburg's stuff, big, giant sculptures of everyday objects.
Next, we rode up by the Covell Drainaige channel, which is this pretty place where Jill likes to let Mani run free for a while. I could just imagine Mani leaping with joy on these great paths along the channel. It's pretty now too, with the leaves changing color. I miss falls from back East (Cleveland, my hometown), but on rainy days it brings me closer to that autumn feeling. Also near there are some pretty swanky homes that have names like "Almond Tree House" or "Boysenberry House" or the like.
Then we went by and watched the ducks squawk at each other at the North Pond. It's funny; these drainage areas can be a nice, peaceful place when planned and designed well. Finally, we headed back through the rest of the Greenbelt loop. All in all, it was a wet and wonderful ride through North Davis.