"We are all going to die, all of us, what a circus! That alone should make us love each other but it doesn't. We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing." ~ Charles Bukowski
This is a piece of granite I took from the hills of North Penasquitos where I grew up. It’s not from the actual street from my childhood but close by, and the geology is pretty much the same all over there. It just means something to me for that reason, it’s from close to where I grew up.
My parents bought the 5-bedroom, 2-bath house with the two car garage as a new construction in a new tract of homes in a quiet but long street topped by a cul-de-sac (don’t like the word “dead-end”) in 1969 before I turned 6. Ten years later my dad died, I moved out at 18, and against my mild protests mom sold the house six years after that in 1986 and moved to South Carlsbad.
So this is a piece of what I still consider to be my childhood home turf full of lots of mixed but happy memories. I need to return it though. Don’t want to lug it around any more.
This is a chunk of limestone I picked up from the side of the road in a development in Palos Verdes above Rocky Point and Lunada Bay areas sometime around eight or ten years ago. In 1963 my dad was a bartender in his mid thirties working at the Plush Horse on a corner of Pacific Coast highway when he met my mom. He was living in a house on property owned by his aunt Lucilla with her lawyer husband by the beach cliffs near Rocky Point. My mom was working as a real estate agent for a female real estate broker who had a company selling houses in Rolling Hills. In the early 1960s such uppity female employment was fairly uncommon. One night after having a good week my mom took a girl’s night out with her friends to celebrate the recent sale of one of her listings. Her best friend Tilly noticed my dad was flirting with my mom and told her she should respond. Dad got mom’s number then they got married, bought a house close by, Kennedy was asassinated and then I was born in 1964.
This rock is what they call “Palos Verdes Stone” and from what I’ve been told it was prized building material for new construction and remodeling in the 20th century. No one’s probably allowed to quarry it for building material any more though because it’s Palos Verdes, of course, and the peacocks would screech.
Like several other rocks in my collection, I need to return this too. My parents sold their house near the border of Redondo and Torrance before I was one-years-old and moved to San Diego so dad could take a job offer from Horatio Vella to manage his newly built Green Onion night spot in Kearny Mesa. So although I never develop a feeling of “home” for South Bay L.A. I do recognize that like this rock I’m a product of it.
I really need to take a trip up there again and put this stone back.