Mother finds teaching opportunity on Stevens Creek | October 7, 2011 | Mountain View Voice | Mountain View Online |

Mountain View Voice

Opinion - October 7, 2011

Mother finds teaching opportunity on Stevens Creek

by Deborah Olenev

Recently my daughter went with me on one of my forays into the Stevens Creek bed with my dog. I have been telling her about how I have been going into the creek with trash bags and filling them to the breaking point with garbage and hauling them out and depositing them at the nearest garbage bin. She thought I was a nut, but when she went in with me she understood why I was doing it and joined me with the vigor of her youthfulness in dislodging old plastic bags wound around tree branches, and old clothes filled with sand embedded in the ground.

She couldn't believe how much trash was down there. I told her, "Nastassia, this is nothing. You should have seen this place before I started to clean it. What you are seeing are the most insignificant pieces, as I have already taken out the largest eye-sores."

This was not true, however, because there were very large pieces I did not even dare to consider moving on my own, but my daughter, being younger and bolder than me, would not be dissuaded. She pulled and tugged and moved some pretty large pieces of garbage to the bin at the top of the trail at Landels Park.

On another day I took my 10-year-old son Abraham into the creek to help me out, and he said, "Mom, are we doing community service?" I said, "Yes, we are."

My husband brought it to my attention this morning that I am only getting a very small section of the creek and that I am not going to be able to clean out the whole thing. I told him that I am sure there are eccentric men and women above and below me on the trail who are cleaning their portions of the creek.

This is a job that certainly needs to be done before the rains come and spread the garbage out even more. If you are an eccentric man or woman like me, please hop into the creek bed and the trail, bring your garbage bags and a pair of gloves and help clean out one of the most beautiful and peaceful places in Mountain View.


Like this comment
Posted by Kate Slama
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Oct 11, 2011 at 11:12 am

The Santa Clara Valley Water District has an Adopt-A-Creek program where residents, businesses, and school, church and scout groups can adopt a section of creek and commit to cleaning it a minimum of twice a year. The Water District will provide gloves and bags, pick up the collected trash, and put up a sign acknowledging the group. There is no cost for the program and there are currently about 100 partners. More information can be found at:

The Water District also helps coordinate National River Cleanup Day in May and Coastal Cleanup Day in September each year. Information on these two events can be found at

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