Archive for June, 2008

“Taxi on Duty in Stinson”

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Article from the Point Raise Light newspaper.

West Marin Taxi, a cab company serving southwest Marin County, could see its first runs next week. Or maybe next month. Even company founder John Posadas, 61, can’t say exactly when the keys to the one-car fleet will be turned with paying customers in tow.

His initial startup date of June 1 has come and gone. The reason for the delay, he said, is that tourism in the area is flagging. And then there’s the $1200 in insurance that hasn’t been paid. But money isn’t a problem, Posadas said. Neither is money the only motive behind the company.

“It’s an outreach,” Posadas said. “I hope to eventually bring in enough capital to file as a nonprofit. My outreach is not only to alleviate accidents, to pick up people under the influence of alcohol, but also to provide a service for shut-ins, the elderly.”

Posadas’ visions for West Marin Taxi are lofty. He said he works with a nonprofit called Respect for Your Elders, and with them wants to provide low-cost rides to and from food pantries. He wants handicapped people—Posadas himself has a debilitating disease for which he wears a bulky metal knee brace—to call him to help streamline their transportation.

The impetus for the cab company came in 1993. Posadas, who suffers from benign but painful tumors in his spine and adrenal glands, and who is hypoglycemic, was prescribed conflicting medications for his conditions. He awoke one night feeling woozy and couldn’t lift the phone to call for help. He fell into a coma. Though help arrived, Posadas nearly died.

“I was aware of the ascension at a very atrociously fast speed” while in the ambulance, he said. “I came up on top of a cumulus and saw the great energy cloud.”

Because of the coma, Posadas was found unfit to drive and lost his license, though he has since regained it and said he has never had an accident. Yet from 1993 to 1995, he had to hitchhike from Mill Valley to his office in Stinson Beach. He learned firsthand that a lack of affordable transportation can make it daunting to get from point A to point B.

“I started this company because of the disparity of service out here,” Posadas said.
Rates for West Marin Taxi will be: $1.90 initial fare, $3 per mile and a flat rate of $30 per hour. Posadas’ son Marius and business partner Manual Urritia are co-owners. Posadas expects to get a handicapped-accessible cab donated through the Metropolitan Transportation Commission’s Elderly and Disabled Advisory Committee.

Taxi requests for West Marin Taxi (WMT) can be made to (415) 868.1330, 868.1034 or 868.9828. You can also book online taxi requests at requests-awestmarintaxi@gmail.com.

A Wild Ramble, Near the Golden Gate

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

Article courtesy of the New York times. http://travel.nytimes.com/2008/02/03/travel/03Explorer.html?ex=1202619600&en=094686ec6cdfac48&ei=5070&emc=eta1

MARIN COUNTY, just north of San Francisco, cradles wealthy bedroom communities in picturesque bays. But nearly half of the county’s 520 square miles is protected open space — bucolic and wild, its tiny towns separated by forested mountains.

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The Rambling Trails of Marin County

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Marin County, Calif.
It is the kind of landscape, with miles of well-maintained trails, that people travel across the globe to traverse — to Wales, say, or the Cinque Terre. But Marin, particularly its western reaches, offers something for anyone spry enough to walk a mile or two, on any budget.

One Friday afternoon last fall, my wife, Nina, and I rode a bus across the Golden Gate Bridge out of San Francisco with the hordes of commuters. We planned to spend the next three days hiking back to the city. While our route may have been ambitious — covering as many as 20 miles a day — it’s easy to choose shorter routes, or make connections by car or bus if you want to do it in less time.

We got off in Olema, a crossroads in a long valley formed by the San Andreas fault. We already felt a world away in the eucalyptus-scented darkness before the understated wooden form of the Point Reyes Seashore Lodge, where we had booked a room.

In the morning, we headed out into a dazzling fog, climbing east toward the Bolinas Ridge. Ghostly white deer — descendants of fallow deer imported in the last century — looked down on us through dripping stalks of fennel. The air smelled like a cool herbal balm, and our boots grew dark with dew.

At the ridge, fog was pouring in from a neighboring valley like heavy cream. Tomales Bay, where the fault reaches the sea, shone in the distance. All about us was mad morning chirping and grass bejeweled in the sun.

Heading south along the ridge, we met our first human beings at noon. Pierce and Carmen Morris were on a northward walk markedly better organized than our own: having rambled throughout Europe, they had entrusted a local company to plan their trip. We chatted for a bit and, as we parted, Mr. Morris turned and called back in his sweet Georgia accent: “We’re 71 years old, by the way!”

“So,” Nina said as we watched them proceed jauntily toward Olema, “30 more years of this for us?”

Soon, we joined the Coastal Trail, which follows the shoreline at a distance, atop a ridge. In the late afternoon, it broke onto rolling, golden hills and our first view of the Pacific. Hawks and vultures romped in the updrafts, swooping close to the shaggy-maned hills, while paragliders sought to imitate them from a promontory up ahead.

We were above the Bolinas Lagoon Preserve, part of the Audubon Canyon Ranch and one of the first places in the county to be protected — a reminder that these hills are not unspoiled by accident. Freeways and subdivisions planned in the 1960s were blocked by local activism. Instead of sprawl on its slopes, West Marin County has salmon in its streams.

As the sun lowered, the ocean became a molten blaze punctuated only by the Farallon Islands near the horizon. The surf whispered from Stinson Beach below us, and we turned toward it. The woods soon gave way to streets of bougainvillea and Monterey cypress around ’60s-era beach houses with BMWs and surfboards out front.

We were quickly in the center of Stinson Beach: a green, some shops and cars tooling up and down the Shoreline Highway. We made the beach just in time to see the perfect ball of evening fire quench itself across Bolinas Bay off Duxbury Point. The hills we had marked with our footprints seemed improbable pink confections.

“It feels like another country,” said Nina, even though we had been on that beach many times before.

We stayed that night at the Redwood Haus, a bed-and-breakfast that harked back to Marin’s more casual hippie days. In the chaotic living room, we listened to the owners’ tales of life in 1960s San Francisco. Then we went upstairs and slept like logs, the surf sighing through our open window.

We woke at dawn to murmuring in the dovecote by the longboards and the smell of frying potatoes and eggs. Ravens called from above, and we shouldered our packs and headed off into the fog along the Dipsea Trail. We ascended through fantastical, gnarled woods into open, misty heath. Quails, rabbits and an elegant buck — in the mist all the same carob color as the trail — granted us room to pass into a dense redwood forest.

As we climbed, sunbeams pierced the brume to pick out pools of water in bowls of polished rock and carpets of glistening, emerald ferns. Big trees lay over the narrow ravine, their backs covered in moss. As we rambled higher still, blue sky tinted the fog and, suddenly, we were in warm sun on the golden flanks of Mount Tamalpais.

Mount Tam is beloved in the Bay Area, and as we approached the Pantoll Ranger Station, the headquarters of Mount Tamalpais State Park, the trails became crowded. Hikers, bikers, campers, walkers, runners and others swarmed the routes to the mountain’s peak. But a friendly ranger directed us to a trail, Troop 80, that even on a sunny Sunday, was quiet and lovely.

The taming of Tour de Ca

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Today, the difference in the conduct of the Amgem Sponsored Tour de Ca. Race,  obviously reflected the negative press[Rollerball]and response of the SBFD Chief, it was a whole lot tamer, although there was a problem with non essential  race car traffic coordination. That was, Amgem Cars, apparently neither Parts or Chase Cars, that were in the Hwy. #1, South Bound Lane hurtling North, in front of & behind CHP vehicles, before its apparent { I saw cars still driving So. on Hwy. #1, I wondered, how they got past the roadblock, but thought that they must have been parked along the stretch of Hwy. #1 between the Hwy#1 Firehouse & the Stinson Beach Market} than closure to both lane traffic other than Race Vehicles & Cycles.  A flag woman, was in front of the Hwy.#1 SBFirehouse, did not appear to be wearing a  radio phone device, so did not know when the Hwy. #1 was closed to traffic, although she did  use her unfurled flags, one time, to slow down Forward Race Vehicles, traveling faster than the speed limit in the Northbound Lane. .  Otherwise the CHP multiple vehicles interspersed amongst following Chase/Parts Cars as well as in the Front & Rear of the Race, with a sign in the last CHP Vehicle, indicating the End of the Race, kept the speed of the C&P Race Vehicles, within Speed Signage  Limits..
There were not any CHP or MC Sheriffs Dept. Officers, evidenced on Hwy.#1, conducting Traffic or Crowd Control, on foot, that I could see,  from my position on Belvedere & Hwy. #1, if there had been, they could have halted So.Bound Traffic. Eliminating non essential Cycle Race Vehicles, dismounting CHP Officers to insure the Public Safety, would insure that situations would not arise, that  could result in Fatal Injury.  We still have Work to Do.. ..

On the scene, were SBFChiefs Ken Stevens + Kendrik  Rand, many of the SBFD volunteers[being there, to respond to any inappropriate incidents], the Press[Channel 7 and Paul Liberatore, ex SB Resident, Reporter for the Marin I. J.], a tame crowd of locals, a few joggers and overnight  tenants of the WPRH & Stinson Beach Motel..The Cyclists were in a close pack as they swept by..w few stragglers..Remember, this is a Cycle Race not a Car/Motorcycle Race, it might hurt, but Amgem must give up all non essential vehicle participation, dismount rented CHP for crowd & traffic control,  replace inexperienced flag persons with seasoned veterans, coordinate-implement-supply a phone/radio system to all of its essential personnel.

John Posadas, SBCCommerce Minister of Information, www.stinson-beach.org, 415 868-1330. See the Stinson Beach Community News Site,  www.stinson-beach.net. SBVA Member of Subcommittees Traffic & Design/Review. Funded & Supported by the World at Peace Redwoods Haus Inn, www.stinson-beach.com, 415 868-9828 or 868-1034.

Yay! The Unrelenting Rollerball Tour de Ca, will not massacre residents of Stinson Beach & A/P NO.or South on Tour de Ca.Hwy. #1

David, in response to your obituary on the Tour de Ca., “New race route ditches Marin”, Thurs July 24..See the SBCCommerce Site, www.stinson-beach.org , 415 868-1330, articles written in concern of the safety violations conducted year after year by the Amgem Promoters of the Tour de Ca. Maybe, then you can understand, what we will be missing..A Tour that does not have an economic impact in SW Marin, on the holiday, it has been conducted on, Presidents Day, A holiday, that brings thousands to the Seashore, yearly, with or without the Tour de Ca..Another day, other than a holiday or weekend, may have made a economic difference. The Tour has been a menace in the manner it has flouted the safety standards necessary to preserve life and limb of the inhabitants of the Villages of Stinson Beach and the Coast Communities bordering Hwy. #1. If other communities want them and their attitude of disrespect for human safety, let them, their standards and care for human life, are different than ours. S.F. has an excessive population of people, in all demographic groups, the Coast values each and every one of its inhabitants, let S.F. have the Tour, maybe they can rout it through the Tenderloin, I am sure, no one there will mind..Please, send my condolences to the Roundstone, they need clientèle in Point Reyes, they don’t have Ocean or Bo Lagoon Views and Redwoods Forests, there, and now they don’t have the Tour, maybe they can schedule another Western Days Celebration on Presidents Day, or a look like a President contest or a Ernest Hemingway or Dave Mitchell lookalike contest, what would you suggest? We are all for any type of celebration or rodeo that breaks up the monotony in P.R., honest, we want everyone to have a good time, make windfall profits to survive the winter, as long as no one gets hurt.. ….

Campaigning

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

THIS IS A NONPARTISAN JOKE THAT CAN BE ENJOYED BY BOTH PARTIES! NOT ONLY THAT? It is POLITICALLY CORRECT!!

While walking down the street one day a US senator is, tragically, hit by a truck and dies.

His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the Golden Gate.

‘Welcome to heaven,’ says St. Peter. ‘Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so we’re not sure what to do with you.’

‘No problem, just let me in,’ says the man.

‘Well, I’d like to, but I have orders from higher up. What we’ll do is have you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity.’

‘Really, I’ve made up my mind. I want to be in heaven,’ says the senator.

‘I’m sorry, but we have our rules.’

And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. In the distance is a clubhouse and standing in front of it are all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him.

Everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, shake his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at the expense of the people.

They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and champagne.

Also present is the devil, who really is a very friendly guy who has a good time dancing and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that before he realizes it, it is time to go.

Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises…

The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens on heaven where St Peter is waiting for him.

‘Now it’s time to visit heaven.’

Free Free at last

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Can you elaborate, on the 10′ Wide overflow that gushed over the Sand Dunes of the Stinson Beach Park to the Pacific Ocean, from the NW Corner of the Stinson Beach Parking Lot, Jan. 25th? At least 4′ of flood waters from Easkoot Creek, that had pooled at the NW to Highway 1 corner of the Stinson Beach Parking Lot, Jan. 25? Created by the Levee that the Park Service constructed, after being faced with the threat of lawsuit by the adjacent to the Park, homeowners affected by the seasonal heavy rain overflow of Easkoot Creek, coming from the parking area? The immediate Calles, north/downstream of the Stinson Beach NW Parking Area[known formerly as Poison Pond] including Pradero and Pinos Calles, as well as the Harris, Sutton & Zell Properties[Anyone have Zells email address and/or addresses of others in the seasonal, Easkoot Creek Overflow/Flood Plain, impacted also by Pacific High Tide Waves + Bolinas Lagoon Rainwater High Tide Impacted Flooding? Please send Pics, of the Breach, as well as personal experiences, Did this Bypass of Floodwaters, Keep your Individual Properties & those of your immediate neighbors from being Flooded? Did it help, even though, your properties were impacted by rainwater/tidal events? This is a much hoped for event, may contribute to a faster than usual friendly EIR Process, to hasten a engineered more sophisticated bypass in the same exact locale. Does anyone have any Pics, of this event? Please send them to me, I will forward them to maximize the clout of the benefit of this event, to the Personas, Media and the agencies who can or are advocating for the Bypass, that may help further the SBCommunity West of Hwy. #1 Conjoined Needs..For those, that have not followed the Bypass Controversy, see the archives of the SBCCommerce site, www.stinson-beach.org and the Stinson Beach Newsite at, www.stinson-beach.net.
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There is no question in my mind that the drainage to the ocean from the northern lot of Stinson Beach Park lowered the threat of flood to properties on Calle del Pinos (mine included). Indeed, there is an opportunity here for the Park Service to use the emergency condition created and alleviated by nature to carve a new arroyo (usually dry but flowing during heavy rain) from just north of their entry bridge to the new ocean drainage.

With the removal of a few dozen yards of asphalt, Park Service naturalists and volunteers would have an nice opportunity to plant native grasses and other riparian plants on the north side of this arroyo to the point where it becomes dune on the ocean. I believe the creek has shown us its natural relief valve.

bad weather

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Beginning tonight, we shall be witnesses to the ferocity of Unharnessed Global Warming Inspired Weather, a Mega-Downpour w Windstorm, cross your fingers, pray, meditate and keep your rabbits foot in your back pocket, that the: Slide, does not inundate Easkoot Creek with mud, rock and tree flow; Bolinas Lagoon is able to absorb the extra Rain Water w/o overflowing its banks, cutting off the Bo Y/Hwy. #1; High Tide/Pacific Waves potential threatening low-lying Bolinas Wharf Road & West Stinson/Seadrift; Stinson So. newly Retrofitted Hwy. #1 and Panoramic Hwy. continue to be Passable. Referring to that gouge in the West Side of MT Tamalpais, located upstream from the Stinson Beach Hwy. #1 Firehouse and Overpass, efforts to divert the mud and material from that menacing gouge, that 1st appeared from the last Deluge of Dec. 2005, have never been to the satisfaction of all that live in the Down flow of Easkoot Creek. Tonight and Friday Night will see if the effort to minimally dredge and clean the Creek bed and Banks of Easkoot Creek of sediment, rocks, foliage and dead trees are enough to keep the expected mega flow of water and material from damaging the bridges and overflowing the banks of Easkoot and Arroyo. A 5″ Mega Rain is expected, in the next two days, with possible hurricane force winds atop Mt Tamalpais, down here at the foot of the Sacred Mount, be prepared for fierce winds and lots of water. The World at Peace Redwoods Haus-Beach, Bed and Breakfast and the Stinson Beach Motel will have limited lodging available at Winter Rates for those who reside, on the West Side of Easkoot Creek and Bolinas, that may not want to chance the possibility of being cut off by Creek Overflow, overflow of Bolinas Lagoon over newly retrofitted Arroyo and/or the potential High Tide/Wave Action flooding of Wharf Road and the Bolinas Y. Their phone no. and websites are www.stinson-beach.com, 415 868-1034 or 868-9828, www.stinsonbeachmotel.com, 415 868-1712. Hot Meals will be available at the Redwoods, precluding flooding or accidents on site, donations of electric cords/generators/rain suits/foodstuffs/dry clothing-blankets/kayaks or small craft may be made at the Redwoods to be parceled out to those who may be in need. The Redwoods Haus, also has tenants that can respond as independent contractors/laborers with trucks for hauling, cleaning up debris.
Tradesmen, laborers, trucks, relocation, local media info. flow, information on the status of the Creek, Hwy. #1, Potential flooding of the Bolinas Y, Bolinas, Muir Beach, Pass ability of Panoramic and Hwy.1 conditions, Easkoot Creek Slide/Deluge, Pacific High Tide/Waves can be garnered by calling the SBChamber of Commerce, Minister of Info., 415 868-1330, www.stinson-beach.org, also see the Stinson Beach Community News Site, www.stinson-beach.net. The Chamber is ideally located, close to the Command Center of the SBVFD Hwy. #1 Firehouse, the SBCommunity Center and the SBCommunity Church, where the CHP, MCSheriffs Dept., GGNRA, Mt Tamalpais State Personnel will be available for info. gathering on the current conditions/update, that info will be passed onto callers as well as to the Media. Please, be alert, be aware, of overhead electrical lines, sandbag low lying doors and entrances, remove unfettered materials from roofs, plywood windows and glass doors facing West if needed, latch down all windows, have rubber boots and raincoats, generators, electric cords, full gas cans, flash lights, cover exterior firewood supplies, candles, dry matches…What have I missed? Please R.S.V.P.

We survived at the World at Peace, Redwoods Haus-Beach, Bed & Breakfast Inn n Stinson Beach, Ca. 94970. The Worst of the Storm Weather has passed, we are still above water, have guests-Highlander Series Script Writer from Paris/. Province, Persian Bahia Faith Beautiful Single Lady, Swedish Osteopath studying with Charles Ridley [Famous Muir Beach Brain Wave Homeopath], Latina from Las Vegas, Chef that cooked at the Little Rock Governor Mansion for then Guv Bill Clinton, otherwise, waiting for more. WE need Heinz 44; got any more imported Fiat Cabriolets from Ca. lately? Hows the weather in Germany? Your business, building, lady? Hope to see you in the New Year, see what the Redwoods Haus, looked like in 2002, brought to you by RoadRunner Magazine; we hosted them, a biker magazine group from No. Carolina and Germany, they complimented us, by inclusion in an article, of their Road .