Charms of the wilderness

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    The world is in a whirlwind of madness and Malibu is right in the middle of the whirl! For example: Let’s have people who just happen to have the voting power right now, decide to swap Charmlee Wilderness Park for ball fields! What’s wrong with this picture!!

    There may be pressure to find ball fields and raise money to pay city bills, but Malibu needs a vision that reaches further into the future. Perhaps the City Council and Ms. Lichtig should read the land agreement made when Charmlee was first obtained by the City, and visit Charmlee Wilderness Park. The key word here is wilderness. Charmlee is a passive recreation Wilderness Park. Some examples of passive recreation could include: taking photographs, bird watching, hiking, painting, writing, stargazing, communing with nature. Currently Charmlee Wilderness Park welcomes hundreds of school children each year. The Charmlee docents report constantly about the joys of being able to lead these children on walks and watch them enjoy discovering a lizard hiding in the brush, or see the ocean for the first time. Perhaps the children from Central Los Angeles and other outlying areas appreciate Charmlee more than the locals! In an unsure existence where war maims and kills, do we really know how fortunate it is to live in a place of beauty like Malibu?

    Although I don’t disregard the need for active recreation – ball playing being only one example of active recreation – I strongly feel that there’s a greater need for a jewel like Charmlee Wilderness Park. Charmlee Wilderness Park, with its span of panoramic views, fossiled rocks, endangered flower and insect species and abundant wildlife, is perhaps one of Malibu’s most unknown treasures. Unfortunately, Malibu doesn’t know what to do with this treasure! Maybe Charmlee Wilderness Park would be appreciated and taken care of more by the State! Interesting, when kids want to play ball they seem to be able to find a place no matter where. However, as more and more development destroys Malibu’s natural environment, there will be little places left to go off by oneself to just be with nature. Besides the beaches and ocean we also need places like Charmlee Wilderness Park to be reminded that we exist as only one life form among many.

    So the world may continue to whirl in its madness, and even cover nature with cement – yet Malibu still has an opportunity to perhaps be the only place left where nature can grow in a wilderness called Charmlee Wilderness Park.

    Alessandra DeClario