Rio Grande Bosque inspires #abqbosque

Kudos to Alex Limkin for exciting and energizing reaction to Mayor Barry and his forces for development (privatization and profit).

Rio Grande Bosque, by Alex Limkin

The Mayor and his design team, Dekker/Perich/Sabatini, want to upscale and upgrade the Bosque. They believe this will attract tourists and business to the region. For them, this means replacing our dirt trails with a 10-foot wide “multi-use” road.

The trails, which they referred to at Wednesday’s Town Hall meeting as a “spiderweb network,” are the trails of our forefathers. They are humble and simple. Quiet underfoot. They have served Albuquerqueans for generations, and much longer still, long before any “Duke of Alburquerque” was even born.

For me, walking on the trails allows me to lose myself in the comforting setting of the forest. The Bosque closes in around me on all sides. I feel connected to the woods. The feeling on a trail is like that of being embraced by nature. A trail does not impose its will on the landscape, like a road, but wanders to the left or right, to make way for trees and bushes. Trails give way. They don’t assert. They don’t demand. Like water seeking least resistance, that flows into the cracks and crevices that present themselves, the trails reflect the combined choice of wildlife and people to blend in with the landscape, to accommodate their steps to the irregularities and unevenesses of the land.

It is interesting that this sort of trail is something that the Mayor and his landscape architects object to. But of course they object. Landscape architects exist to build things, mighty projects, they seek to mold and shape the landscape before them. A humble footpath that costs nothing to build, virtually maintains itself, and does not bear the stamp of Modern Industry would seem, in their eyes, like a bit of nothing.

For me, the trails are beautiful, much like a spider web is a thing of beauty. Instead of building roads, let’s educate our children so they don’t feel this disconnection from nature. So they can sense the majesty and grace of grass and fern, soil and sand. Let’s take them out on these trails so they can experience the wonder and mystery of following in the footsteps of their forefathers, of not being able to see around the next bend, of being surprised by the undulating wonders that the trail gives freely, where no road can.

I walk the trails and touch my fingers to the tips of grasses. This spider’s web, connecting us all–to the river, to the earth, to each other–is worth protecting.

Rio Grande Bosque, by Alex Limkin