|The Yuba & the unofficial north exit from Mountainview|
Linny is curious about the place, since it's new to him, but maybe also because he's at the age where he's starting to understand what death is. He sometimes asks me to stop so we can look at some of the larger headstones. I'll get him to read out the letters & numbers on the stones & we'll talk a little about the people buried there.
Mountainview is quiet, with virtually no cars, only the occasional mourner visiting a grave, with more dog walkers & joggers using the space as a park. There are orderly rows of brightly coloured trees beside the central roads & shrubs delineating different sections of the cemetery but it's a very open, bright space. As you might expect from the name, on a clear day we have a beautiful view of the mountains as we glide through the narrow paved roads that criss cross the graves.
Most of the time I turn left in the middle of the northernmost section of the cemetery, ride past the tall war monument, & pop out of the big hedge that surrounds it all onto the sidewalk. But sometimes I miss the turn, so we sneak out through a gap worn through the hedge on the very north end of Mountainview.
The large triangular hole feels a bit transgressive, a locals' shortcut, that you have to stoop to get through. Linny knows the routine & hops off the bike when we get to it, as do I, then I manoeuvre the bike awkwardly through, trying not to ride or step on the flat headstones next to it & hop back on again once we've gotten off the curb on the other side.
The rest of our ride is through quite quiet streets where we rarely encounter more than a dozen cars. The main hazards we have to watch out for are oblivious high school students walking in our path as we bike through one of the school yards.
Though school pickup is more or less a chore, I find I look forward to this half hour of biking. I enjoy the challenge of the hill all the way there, & nothing beats the feeling of coasting most of the way home downhill. Sometimes Linny leans up against me or we hold hands on the bike as I pedal. I'm excited for Linnaeus to start biking on his own, but I'm sure I will miss those little moments with him on the big bike behind me.
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