Petaluma is my
home at the top of San Pablo (San Fransciso) Bay. This
small city of 60,000 still retains the remnants of the agricultural
life and yet enjoys a close proximity to the vibrant San
Francisco. The big trees and coastal mountains immediately
to the north are a comfort for one who longs to keep a strong
link to wild lands and rural community. (continued below)
To see a larger
version of the image, click on the thumbnail version.
in Turning Basin
Valley from Sonoma Mountain
One of the sadnesses
here, like in many places, is the ongoing loss of natural
areas for ourselves and fellow critters. The world
famous salmon and steelhead fisheries entwined with our
north coast rivers are down to pitiful levels of survival.
Europeans came here in 1775 and the transformation of
the area has been poignant. Early witnesses said that
the waterfowl would blacken the sky in the spring and
fall of the year with their incomprehensible abundance.
Even so, Petaluma
is a beautiful place to live. The 4,000 acre marsh
surrounding the tidal estuary (Petaluma River), and the
surrounding hills and mountains created through tectonic
forces are a refuge for vigorous natural communities which
keep us sane and healthy. The hills, moderate scale, and
historical buildings are widely appreciated and protected
by an active and dynamic community.