Unlike my Queen of Sunnybrook Farm wife, ol’ Sunshine Sally, herself, I tend to see the glass half empty with a leak at the bottom. And, if you put me in a place not to my liking, I am a bit of pain. I have GOMS. Grouchy old man syndrome. Plus, I am spoiled rotten. I have Rotten GOMS.
Add a writer’s block and I am not an overly happy camper right now. Worse, Sal makes me walk every day. I hafta trudge about looking at desert and dry bushes from every angle. This is just NOT my style. Although, anything with Sal is pretty good.
Today, she took me back to one of the highlights of an otherwise dismal series of treks and we found ourselves doing the Queen Creek Wash Walk. Again. But this time, we went left instead of right and headed up in a direction we didn’t have an inkling about. Usually, it does not matter. It’s always all the same.
Not this time! This time the walk-up-the-wash took us to a small park quite exceptional in it’s own urban desert kind of way. Right there, smack dab in the middle of a fifty acre park was a five acre man-made concrete pool dedicated to fishing! What looked like a huge swimming pool, complete with shade and bathrooms and water toys was a stocked-with-five-kinds-of-fish facility that took the word nature completely out of fishing. It was Walmart parking lot meets Pond. It is thirteen feet deep. No swimming allowed.
Don’t get me wrong…I liked it. I mean….the city of Queen Creek spent a fortune to bring pond-fishing to the desert for the general public and, except for the required fishing license, it was free. I was reminded of the ski hill in Dubai. Or the Queen Mary in Pasadena. It was – to put it mildly – unexpected.
There were people in the park but only one guy was fishing and so I went up to him and asked about the surprising public amenity (Mancel Carter Oasis Park). He said it was new. He said he caught a ten-incher but let it go. He sat on a bench with his rod in front of him and a line trailing in the water. Aerating pumps created bubble mounds in the water. Bamboo grew in select spots near nicely laid out rock arrangements every so often so as to create a ‘natural look’. Sal and I saw a few little fish. It is a movie-set waiting to happen to describe a dystopian future where all of nature is artificial. But it was still kinda neat in that weird paved-parking-lot way.
There seems to be no insects in Gilbert, Mesa, Queen Creek. That’s because the gardeners spray ‘ROUNDUP’ all the live long day. Everywhere. A walk through a park is a traipse through a dead zone. The wash is better – no Roundup. A wash is a dry river bed that takes the surface runoff whenever there is rain and so it is the most ‘natural’ environment of the area (but it is surrounded by areas that are paved and/or flooded with Roundup). And the fishing pool was right alongside the main wash. Still, not a bug on the water. Nor in the air. There are five kinds of fish in the pond and not a single bit of natural food for any one of them. Amazing.
I am still kinda stunned by seeing that. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Daee94XgWlk