Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Along the Canute Commute

Some days I forget that I live in the most beautiful city in the world. (Of the places I've lived, only Cape Town, South Africa, comes close.) But really, I do.

Many days I leave the city, drive less than 15 miles, and run on magnificent mountain trails in the Marin Headlands to the north or on San Bruno Mountain to the south. But on ordinary recovery days, when I just want to putter along for four or five miles, day dreaming about anything but running, I follow what I call the "Canute Commute."

The Canute Commute was made possible by the San Francisco sewer improvement project of the 1970s. We were dumping our street run off water directly into the ocean -- the EPA said "NO," so we were taxed ourselves for a sewage treatment plant next to the zoo and a network of underground pipes that carry the run off to treatment. The Canute Commute is a flat bicycle path that runs along the top of the monster sewer pipe just inland from Ocean Beach.

It could be boring, deathly so. If you look inland, the street names plod along in alphabetical order: "Judah, Kirkham, Lawton, Moraga, etc." so that if you wanted to know your exact progress you could. I try not to look; my Canute Commute days are restful running.

I'll share my every day run here, from ocean parking lot along the path and return to the ocean.








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