Duck Hunters?

Yesterday I took Savannah out for a walk along the bay. It was sunny and a little breezy, but by the time we started walking back to the car, the blue sky was clouding over. We walked down the path heading toward the drinking fountain, and I saw a man wearing a sweatshirt with the hood pulled over his head. He approached the pump and held his right arm out in the air almost perpendicular to his body. I heard a gun shot. The shot sounded like it had been fired toward the levees, toward the man who had stuck his hand out. He put his arm back down next to his body. 15 or 20 minutes earlier I saw a KTVU Channel 2 helicopter fly overhead leaving the bay heading towards the city. I heard a few shots fired at that time as well. Duck hunters often come during hunting season in the fall and winter to hunt ducks and other birds out in the slough. They aren’t allowed to fire toward the levees though, because of the joggers, walkers, and bicyclists out there. Hearing gunshots along the bay isn’t unusual.

I called out to Savannah so we could head home, and as I turned back I caught one last glimpse of the hooded sweatshirt man. He had continued walking down the trail and past the pumping station. He was standing facing the treatment ponds with his arms in the air and knees slightly bent. I heard a few more gun shots off in the distance. I wasn’t sure what he was doing there. He looked as if he was exercising, praying, doing some type of Tai Chi, or maybe surrendering. I pulled Savannah along and headed back to the car. I was nervous and left in a hurry.

We’re going back to the same trail for another walk today. We’re fortunate to have trails along the San Francisco Bay that are so close by. There are thousands of birds in the marshes, as well as plenty of other plants, animals and insects for Savannah to sniff and me to take pictures of. In spite of the trails being located next to the water treatment facility, they really are a great public natural resource.

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