She didn’t return to
Detail in the above image. When I asked Adam yesterday to get a picture of that particular gravestone, I didn't tell him why. I didn't have to. That's how strongly Gertrude Stein's little bon mot still hangs around Oakland.
My sons grew up in
As well they should.
Can you hear me there? Adam on his cell ‘phone in front of a house I lived in for a few months in 1976.
This photo shows one of the places in Oakland I have called home. The house was divided up into several tiny apartments; in 1976, I lived in the room with the bay window right behind Adam. Adam’s first bicycle was hidden down behind the house as a surprise on his 6th birthday, and his and Lynda’s apartment is within about 75 yards of this place.
The Harrington family’s springtime gathering has been at
As the extended family gathered, it struck me (as it does all us old geezers) that kids grow up so fast:
Lynda, Adam, and Andrew’s cuddly pet, Hairy, seemed to enjoy the gathering, too. I guess. Far as I could tell. Without touching her.
After lunch, we caravanned up to Montclair Park:
The wonderful old tree that used to be directly behind the bench from this vantage point had to be taken down a few months ago. Adam has plans to plant a replacement on Doug’s birthday, October 1: a Douglas Fir. I have no doubt that he can make that happen.
This was not a somber pilgrimage – all the kids had tons of fun:
After we returned to Lynda’s and Adam’s apartment, we split off into different groups going in different ways. Adam and I went back up into the hills, but this time into a place that both he and I have enjoyed over the decades as a peaceful, beautiful place for solitude and reflection: the Mountain View Cemetery, where Daniel and Amelia Stein rest, just a block up the street from Adam’s current place and my old one (the latter pictured in this entry’s second illustration, above.)
The shared but separate experience that Adam and I have of that place was detailed in this earlier blog entry illustrated with some of Adam’s photos. The facility is enormous, old (by California standards, anyway), and magnificently designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who was also the landscape architect for New York City’s Central Park.
So, to take one more cheap shot at Gertrude, there is a lot of there there in Oakland, at least for Adam and me. But, trumping that, is the lots of who There, and years of events that are entwined with There, and the ongoing continuum of being that we all have brought to There and continue to grow through There.
Thanks, Adam, for everything on this day. And for the rides. (As far as Adam and I can remember, this day was the first time he had ever driven a car with me as a passenger, and he did it twice with two different vehicles. I figured that I should let him take the training wheels off before he turns 38.)
[Note in production: this post was actually almost ready to publish last night, when Ryan called with news of yet another soul born into this extended family. I decided to postpone putting this up so that Casey could have the day all to herself on SherWords.]