When I read thing about Bayport being too hoity-toity for the likes of a brewery bus to drive through the neighborhood it makes me laugh a little. Mostly because Bayport isn’t very hoity toity — I mean don’t get me wrong there are some neighbors that may sway a little in that direction — but in general it’s probably no different than any other neighborhood. But I laughed at the characterization Bayport being too hoity toity for brewery tours because, oh my god, is there anything more hipster than a brewery bus? I mean, come on. The brewery party bus isn’t taking anyone to the Budweiser plant in Fairfield, and it’s beer “education.” If you check out the Yelp reviews they seem to specialize in bachelorette parties and 50th birthdays.
But anyway, it’s interesting how everyone still talks about Bayport as though we all moved in yesterday. Did you know that Bayport is now almost nine years old? The first lotteries started in 2004, when we first moved in I think it was 2005 so we have been in Bayport for eight years and five of those years in our current (later phase) house. But I guess in a town that measures in generations as opposed to years it will be decades until Bayport residents are not seen as interlopers.
I had actually crafted a whole post in my head with a Bayport update and retrospective, but got sidetracked by the beer bus thing. I thought the folks who mentioned never seeing anyone in Bayport and it being akin to a ghost town would be interested in my little piece of the neighborhood and I had this whole maudlin introduction written about my childhood and how that impacted what I wanted for my children and their childhood. But then I scrapped it. This post is also for John P. who — I think it was John P. — thought that the existence of pocket parks was a mistake.
So we elected to move into a different part of Bayport mainly because of the availability of a house on a pocket park. Otherwise I would have been super happy in our other house. What is awesome about the pocket park is that what my husband and I had always envisioned for the park — which is a place for kids to run around and play — has finally come to fruition. Almost every afternoon there are kids running around and playing tag or some other games and activating that area. But Wednesdays have become a particularly special day because it’s when kids that don’t live directly on the park know that there will definitely be kids outside in a sort of large scale unscheduled playdate.
The great thing about kids playing outside is that it brings the parents outside as well and whereas my anti-social and lazy inclination would just be to hole up inside, it forces me to be social and be a part of the larger community. Plus, the imaginary games they play are so much fun to watch.
I don’t know what people in other parts of the neighborhood are doing, because I’m too busy watching my kids, but I will note that it took a good five years of living here before we saw a lot of activity like we are seeing now. Probably because I, like my neighbors, all had very young children and the sort of play they are doing wouldn’t have happened with kids that topped out at four years old.
So never fear Alamedans from other parts of the city who drive by at random times and then say that there is NEVER anyone around, there are people around, it’s probably not when you are there.