Monday, April 25, 2011

Drizzle, a tunnel, Cheesecake Factory, 6 miles and Ham

Easter morning in Marin and it is drizzling a persistent drizzle, the house is quiet. There are no Easter Bunnies that have visited here. No little girls with excited pleas to start the egg hunt. No ruffled ankle socks, or ribbon bestowed hats, or little white gloves. No fancy dresses, or baskets to fill. Just Glenn and me, the dogs and the drizzle.

But it is Easter, a day of new beginnings, a day of redemption and hope. We know the drizzle will end, the day will have its own beauty and excitement. It won't be the same, but it will be precious and meant to be lived with every bit as much gratitude.

I told Glenn that I wanted to walk somewhere on Easter. With the weather and my final moments of this cold, as much as I would have enjoyed walking on the Coastal Trail or up Mt Tam, something closer and shorter was called for. Our Easter plans were to include a visit to Glenn's Dads for dinner, so time wise we were limited. We decided to incorporate a lunch/brunch and Glenn suggested we walk the new pedestrian tunnel between Larkspur and San Rafael.

This tunnel was recently opened. They have also gotten an adjacent railway tunnel completed at the same time for the day that light rail will take commuters all the way to Larkspur Landing from Sonoma.

On this drizzly day, there wasn't a whole lot of traffic on the path. An occasional bike, runner or dog walker/runner passed us on our way. A couple of families with kids on scooters passed us as well but for the majority of the walk we could use the whole path and take our time.

These old Railroad right of ways make great walking trails. They aren't generally very hilly and usually are traversing some interesting cities towns or points of interest. If you are looking for a walk near you, you might want to visit

Although we brought our foulies, we really didn't need them. The drizzle was so light, it didn't really make any difference up here in San Rafael.

The path is beautiful now, all new, lighting for the evening hours.

The old railway makes for some interesting sidelines...

The path passes near the Marin Sanitary dump and some storage areas. We heard the sound of Peacocks over at the dump. This community resource has been a National Model for recycling and recovery. Take a look about the family who is behind this innovative quirky place.

Glenn was very taken with the storage containers. I think he took 8 pictures of them.

But I was ready to head into the tunnel... As a walker this tunnel takes about 2 miles out of a walk from Larkspur to San Rafael each way, so.... that is pretty great. Now a walk from our house in Mill Valley to Glenn's office will be in the cards before the end of training.

The tunnel itself is not that long but it cuts through a hill that most people would prefer not walking over...

Inside the tunnel along the concrete walls, water seeps through seams or any place it can find . The minerals are already forming very cave like deposits.

Glenn finished taking his photos of the storage containers... and emerged for the shadows.

Light at the end of the tunnel....

This Marin Company had it's stamp on this project.

About half way the city limits are noted.

Aha! The end...

Fire hose connection.

Coming into the light.

At either end of the tunnel is the control panel. Inside the tunnel there are panic buttons to push in case of an emergency. I hope there aren't muggings or other crimes. They are trying to avoid that with camera's and quick responses to panic buttons. Finger's crossed.

Looking back at the tunnel you can see the rail tunnel ready to go.. The older tunnel was completed, it says 1924, and the new one... 2010.

On the Larkspur side of the tunnel, Glenn and I made our way to see if there was anything open for brunch at Larkspur Landing. But everything was closed until at least another hour. So we headed off to the Village at Corte Madera, where there is a Cheesecake Factory.

To get there from where we were we walked by the railroad trestle that crosses Corte Madera Creek.

Spring smells like sweet anise to me along many Marin trails and roads.

In the Creek we saw a family of Canadian/Marin geese. Glenn had never seen Canadian goslings before. There are surprises to be see when you take little walks.

Looking down the Creek at Greenbrae Boardwalk.

With the zoom on my camera I could see Thalassa with San Quentin in the background.

At the Cheesecake Factory, I was surprised at how few people were there.

This restaurant originally started in Beverly Hills (I think) . In any case the decor seems like it was done by an art director moonlighting.

Glenn drank tea. Even though the 20 year old waitress didn't know what it was... luckily the bartender did.

Heading back after brunch I took a couple of pictures of shorebirds in the marshland.

It was breezy during the walk back, but the sun was out.

At the trestle the was a tree from before the trestle.

Close up of a Cactus...

Near the Ferry Parking lot a sweet little creek finidng its was to the bay.

I don't know which city I like better.

Back to san Rafael the day worker were spending their time palying some sort of gambling game ... I saw some $$$ flying in the breeze, quickly snatched up.

Back home, I packed my Easter meal to go. Ham, biscuits, asparagus, appetizers, potatoes, champagne, strawberries, angel food cake. We headed to Opa's house (Glenn's Dad).

He was glad to see us. We got a phone call from Chris and Allison as they were headnign back home from their Easter at my nephew's house in Maryland.

And as I went to bed last night I thought about the day.

Can't help it. I still miss "those days". Those days... when my father would buy us coursages for our Easter dresses. Those days when my Mother cried because I forgot to give her an Easter card. Those days when Oma would be so excited to make the day special for Allison and Katie and decorate her table with little fuzzy bunnies, and jelly beans. Those days when family was everywhere you looked and not across the country or gone entirely.

Each day is unique in tis own way, holiday or no. What will today bring? Well, I suppose I better stop looking back and go and find out. Hope you had a GREAT Easter. Now go have an adventure!