Will Adams provided the summary below of this week's Wednesday walk while Dick is recovering from surgery.
It was another beautiful, cold, clear day last Wednesday for our Piedmont Recreation Department's Walking on Wednesdays walkers. Melba Y filled in for Dick. She was uncertain of how he knows the number of walkers (Secret - he counts the faces in the group photo), and she had everyone "count off" after stating their names during our introduction custom. This process revealed 50 walkers and three K-9 best friends were on hand. It also revealed that there were two first time walkers, local architect Rebecca S, and Joyce B, a recent arrival to Piedmont. The walkers were pleased to have them as part of the group. Will Adams then took over leading the walkers on a 1.6 mile loop on the familiar hilly streets around Exedra Plaza viewing and discussing the numerous architectural styles close to the center of town. These included Mission Revival, Craftsman, Victorian, Tudor, several Contemporary styles, Spanish Revival, Colonial Revival, and Art Nouveau. Will received help from the walkers in defining and describing the sometimes confusing characteristics of various eclectic buildings. The group stopped at nine different locations to review 12 buildings. It was astutely pointed out that there is an interesting richness to the city texture in Piedmont that results from so many different building styles, the exact opposite of the pervasive contemporary residential track development. Others pointed out that what unites the many different styles is in a large part the associated landscaping, especially the rows of mature street trees that connect and soften the differences of the buildings. Along the way on Hazel Lane at Wildwood Avenue the walkers stopped for the attached group photo. The walk ended with the group being made privy by Will to a promised, secret shortcut on their way back to the Exedra Plaza. Next Wednesday, on December 21st, Melba and Mike will take the group down the hill to Zachary's for a Holiday group pizza lunch, which the walkers were already looking forward to. P.S. Here's what Jim K shared regarding our walk last week. Jim said a small group of walkers was very interested in a peculiar fruit tree that they had not seen before at 55 Sea View. It was bursting with ripe red fruit that looked like oversized strawberries. Some walkers thought it was a Strawberry Tree, but with one in his backyard, Jim was fairly certain that was not it. With a little research he found that the tree is a "Himalayan Strawberry Tree" (Cornus Capitata) which is a relative of Dogwood. The "California Strawberry Tree" seen in many places around Piedmont is an Arbutus Unedo which has no relation to the Cornus Capitata, except they are both non-deciduous and have bright red fruit. And the Cornus Capitata fruit is edible and purported to have mild hallucinogenic properties, just in case anyone would like to sample it the next time we're there.