A Way Of Life

Val Vista Picnic Areas

The neighborhood where I’m from is not ancient, but was not recently developed either. My neighborhood was built in the mid 1970’s, so I guess someone could say it is moderately old in this era of 2015. Because of the creation of my neighborhood, nearly everything I remember from my childhood exists, including a park and my elementary school.

People with knowledge of my town from long ago, such as some teachers, have described what is now my neighborhood as just unclaimed land, with a lot of dirt just sitting there. There was just one road that leads to my high school, which existed then as well as now. The freeway that is next to my neighborhood also was around back then, as well as the compact creek next to it.

Now, of course, my neighborhood is no longer just many acres of earth, but is now a filled to capacity with homes, my elementary school, and the Lucky’s supermarket. The supermarket is located in a strip mall, with two of my favorite restaurants inside, being De La Torre’s Trattoria and Chicago’s Metropolitan Deli. I have gone to De La Torre’s for many occasions, most commonly from out-of-town visitors and birthdays. Chicago’s is great anytime, and my brother and I commonly used it as a celebration spot of the school year being over.

Every day from 7:45 to about 8:30 and again from 2:15 until 3:45, there’s traffic all over due to the elementary school opening and closing for the day. Everyone is trying to get their children to school in all types of cars, from the old ones to the latest Hondas. But because I live so close to my elementary school, I was able to walk there and not deal with the traffic. If not for the fact that the school sealed it off, my neighbor used to have a gate that I would have used go into the back lawn of the elementary school.

Across the street from the backside of the school is my neighborhood park. There’s a small softball field, in case someone wants to stay in the neighborhood instead of going to another park. There are a few play structures, and even a water area. The water area is closed during the winter, but during the summer it is great to have.

Behind that is another playground and a body of water. After the park went through a remodel around 2005 or so, everyone was playing in it. But after a few months, the city shut that down and banned people from swimming in the water. I don’t know why, but it was probably for sanitary and health reasons.

Behind that area is a parking lot, which stretches all the way to the end. But to the left of that area is the creek I wrote about earlier in this blog post. It’s completely closed off and definitely not safe to swim in, but there is a pathway for bikers if they choose to use it. That stretches all along that side of town.

Once you walk for ten minutes past the few dozen soccer fields, you have wound up at the skate park and the roller hockey rink. There’s all sorts of stuff to jump on and slide across. In the roller hockey rink, many people play, from children to adults in leagues. That marks the end of the park and neighborhood on one end. At that point you have reached the main street, which is near the I-680 freeway.

For the rest of the neighborhood, that is where everyone lives. Most of the homes are one story, but there are a few two story homes. While I have lived in my neighborhood, I have not seen any 3 story homes, and they are not common in the rest of my town either. All the homes in my neighborhood have a front lawn, a back lawn, and room for 1-2 cars to park in front of the homes.

In the supermarket’s area, there are just a few shops. There’s a convenience store, a nail and hair place, and the two restaurants I listed up above. But for the sake of knowledge, they are De La Torre’s Trattoria and Chicago’s Metropolitan Deli.

De La Torre’s is a more formal restaurant that serves Italian food such as bread, pizza, meatballs, etc. Chicago’s is where you want to go if you want to hang out with friends, as it’s a very casual American place. They have chicken, sandwiches, hamburger, fries, sodas, and more. I have gone to both places many times and the food is always great.

That is about it for my neighborhood. There’s good restaurants, a good school, and great people in their homes. If you’re ever in Pleasanton, go ahead and stop by.

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