Last night I set off on a late night bike ride that I have since deemed “The Stressbuster” mostly because I was feeling a bit of pressure from the day to day business of life paired with the anxiety of a long uphill ride and the result was a big cheeser of a grin. I know that while I write this, not everybody finds exercise to be a relaxing event or that they even exercise for any reason other than to get in/ stay in shape but to me, a good hard work out is a great outlet for excess energy and frustration. At any rate I rode up the Cuesta grade and back down through the farm roads that I grew up on all the while chasing the last bit of sunshine that hit the serpentinite rocks and granit peaks of San Luis Obispo and ultimately had switch on the headlight of my bike and I went home tired but extremely happy. Then I started thinking.
I thought about how great of a ride it was and how I can always count on that particular route to be a good time and why that could be so. My conclusion, there are very few places that a person can go to find solitude and beauty in nature yet still be close to the very civilization that drives them to biking. In the period of 80 minutes I rode along hundreds of passing cars and then dove off onto dirt rodes where from there I only saw a handful of cotton tails, black tail deer, scrub jays, lizards, a ginormous raccoon and more whippoorwills than I cared to dodge on the trail. Not a single person. Talk about a moment of solitude and peace and quiet to unwind from the day.
I went to bed in a total exhausted euforia and woke up this morning and realized that I love living in SLO because we still have that vibe and atmosphere that provides for our residents to escape hustle and bustle. Friends in other areas talk about how their local trails are closed to bikes, how there is no access to the outdoors beyond the local dog park, etc. but in SLO we take it for granted. We take for granted local ranch families will let us cross their land to to sit atop a peak and watch the sun set or that our city is allowing non profits to build exercise courses across city owned parks for the benefit of the city. Along those lines, I realize there have to be many other reasons that we live in SLO. So I am leading the charge here with a call to action. Why do you folks love to live in SLO?