The volunteers followed his lead. Behind them the squeals of boys and girls harmonized with sparrow songs, as the Silver Tree children took turns swinging from the elongated rope. “All right Tarzan,” said a Silver Tree counselor. “It’s someone’s else’s turn.”
After three hours, the work party wended its way down the slopes. Jenny Sotelo carried a bucket of pruning tools; Steven Uchida preceded her carrying the two cultivators. Campbell paralleled them higher above, admonishing a Silver Tree youngster to mind his counselor’s instructions and not race down the hill.
Intersecting the group, two Silver Tree boys conversed, holding up and trading Pokemon cards. They lagged behind their friends, eventually catching up with them under a canopy of willows.
Jenny Sotelo reached down and picked up a caterpillar that negotiated its way across her path. She placed the orange and black insect on her arm and allowed it to wiggle up her arm. “It kinda feels good,” she said.
The Monterey couple that passed her earlier on the canyon bluff returned from their round trip excursion to Glen Park’s village. They weaved their way through excited Silver Tree campers, smiling, possibly because they’d avoided the suffocating O’Shaughnessy automobile fumes by negotiating canyon paths instead.
Jenny Sotelo fingered her colorful, multi-legged companion, which inched its way up her arm. “That was so much fun.” She gently reinstalled the caterpillar on the ground and watched it crawl into the ivy and blackberry.
One of a dozen or so Natural Area stewards, she’d be back again next week to prune both back. Algerian ivy and Himalayan blackberry grow, it seems, as quickly as caterpillars wriggle slowly. Jenny Sotelo would be the first to tell you.