September 26, 2010 - After at least a decade since I last visited this spot I was excited to take you with me on a little visit to "Frienship Park" here at Border Field State Park. To tell you the truth there were very few signs of friendliness here anymore.
By my recollections you could drive right up to the park on a bluff by the bullring and lighthouse overlooking the ocean. I guess the good thing about the road being closed was that it ensured that I actually got a decent amount of walking in on this trip.
I was initially delighted when I stepped out of my car to a chorus of birds tweeting me. The "chirp meter" was at an all time high.
I was less enthused, though, when I became aware of the other winged greeting committee. Seriously, there were more mosquitoes there than there are dollars in the U.S. budget deficit! Refusing to freak out or be detoured I just swatted while stepping up the "speed" of my walk; at least when my feet were touching the ground. Part of the time I think those flying blood-suckers were actually carrying me. Glad West Nile Virus is not and issue around these parts!
Other than the several Border Patrol I ran into, one of whom stopped to see what king of an idiot was walking out in these parts in short sleeves and shorts flailing around with a Bolivian walking stick and a camera as he tried to outrun a swarm hungry munchers while slapping himself all over (as if THAT was doing any good), I was literally all alone.
I have to admit, and I know this is silly, that being all alone as I approached the border fence, in light of some of the bad stuff that's been going down in Mexico, was a little creepy. And I NEVER used to feel that way. Like what's going to happen? A cartel member is going to shoot me through the fence? Creepy nonetheless. At least I had Wilson along to protect me!
Visiting Mexico used to be a regular part of our lifestyles. Surfing, shopping, sports bets, dining, sitting on donkey-zebras for photos, magaritas, mariachis! Not anymore. It all started going downhill for us after 9/11 when security made the trips unbearable. Then the drug wars, kidnappings, murders and all that over-emphasized stuff in the news basically clinched it. No more Mexico, for now anyway. SAD! :(
On that nice note let's get back to the quest for "Friendship" Park.
Did I mention the Tijuana River that flows out through these parts is hopelessly polluted? Well it is! And every time it rains all that unhealthy, diseased and poisoned crap flows right out into our beautiful Pacific Ocean! At least the mosquitoes aren't spawning out there. Wait a minute! Awe, skip it....
Let's get back to the topic of "Friendship."
Hey, look there!
Nice fence, huh?
Do we really need a fence? I mean with all those mosquitoes and that stinky polluted river separating us you'd think that would be enough.
I was happy to see what appeared to be some park renovations in progress. This area used to be very well maintained and quite appealing.
Looks like you could just surf a wave right around that fence, maybe buy a bottle of inexpensive Kahlua, and surf right back. Probably a good idea to bring a passport with you just in case though.
And upon return you can sit around this nice picnic table, throw some burgers or carne asada on that barely visible grill and have a "friendly" time with your friends here at "Friendship" Park.
You've probably had enough of the park, along with my cynicism, so let's walk down to the beach.
Now THAT's inviting!
Bye, bye fence!
Heading north! Wilson and I could have walked all the way back to Imperial Beach but the Tide was high and we didn't feel like swimming the river.
A look back at the bullring and lighthouse. Don't reckon we'll have much reason to go back there for awhile.
Turning east onto Beach Trail used often by equestrians.
Now THIS made me happy. I love seeing environmentalist efforts in action! Kudos to "adoptabeach.com."
This is pretty much the most southern reach of the Tijuana River Estuary. Glad to know we are protecting the wildlife and habitats the whole way.
I finally ran into some other people! I thought I was finally going to encounter some semblence of "friendship" but they just whizzed by me mumbling something about the smelly water and mosquitos.
Another Interesting Hike!