Wednesday, September 2, 2009

memories of my hometown

Ever since I wrote about my days in school, I have been thinking about my hometown, Bolinas. Mostly about how beautiful it was. It was beautiful enough to make a girl in a relatively poor artist family not take much notice about the things she didn't have, because there't not much chance to notice those things if you are constantly skipping along dirt roads, looking for seashells at low tide, or gliding over ravines on rope swings. 
In the first photo you see one of the churches, simple and white, a very classic and charming building which unfortunately I have never seen from the inside. In fact, everyone I knew, including my parents, were such hippies, that I often wondered who went to church in Bolinas. There must have been some church-goers, because this church is still there. 
In the second photo you see a perfect symbol for Bolinas and the majority of it's citizens: the peace sign. Ya, dude.
The field and ranch house you see in the third picture is what my seventh and eighth grade classrooms looked out onto. A lovely view, but it wasn't so lovely when they had just strewn fresh manure on the fields and we had to study through the stench. The house you see pictured was the first contact I had with the concept of 'dream home.' It is the original dream home for me, with it's white wooden exterior and covered porch. Accross the street from it, every October, there was the Pumpkin Patch. A big stretch of field with piles of pumpkins, ready to be picked up, brought home, and carved into Jack-O-Lanterns. There was never anyone there to sell them, just a scale, a price-per-pound sign scribbled in marker, and a bucket for you to put the money in. It was a very trust-worthy community.
Ah, the Grand Hotel. I don't actually remember it being used much as a hotel. It was an antiques store, with shelves and shelves of stuff. The owners had two daughters my age, and we would play hide-and-seek in the store. I would usually end up sifting through records and trying on old musty hats while one of them looked for me. Outside, on the left side of the entryway, there is a mulberry bush, and when they were ripe I couldn't walk by without snagging a few. The sidewalk pictured was ingeniously nick-named Poop Lane, because of all the dog poo. Yes, kids are very creative. There were also these yellow-flowering weeds which grew on Poop Lane; we called them 'sour grass' because when you chewed the stalk they were sour enough to make you pucker. Some kids claimed they were sour because of dog pee. Considering all the dog poo around, this may have been an educated guess. And yet, for some reason, even though they tasted pretty disgusting, we chewed on them quite a bit.
In the last photo you can see a beautiful farm which one passes when entering Bolinas. It's what you see when you arrive, and what you see when you leave. It's a landmark from my childhood. 
I hope you enjoyed this little tour. Maybe one day I'll scan some of my personal photographs of my childhood in Bolinas and share them with you all!


  1. I loved this little tour - it looks so much like New England - and I love your description about the pumpkin patch and the scales - I experienced a similiar thing growing up when I was a kid. We used to drive past a big field and at the side of the road was a massive wooden cart and on it lay all sorts of mishapen gords and pumpkins and you could buy them and leave the money -it is a romantic image that has remained in my mind for years...

  2. Thankyou for this lovely trip to a beautiful little place!

  3. PS Just to let you know I have awarded you an award - see my blog and why... xxx

  4. love seeing this today...

    do you ever get back here?

    it's september !!!
    love to you and kiki and boston and ramon

    kary and teddy



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