Not all of my memories of California were rosy ones. In fact a lot of them were smoggy, but that went with the territory living in Los Angeles.
We really didn’t live in LA, but in a quiet bit of Suburbia called Montebello. Standard Oil managed to make Montebello produce one-eighth of the crude-oil in California, which is quite an accomplishment, for my home town! We were surrounded by lots of other cities, which meant that crossing from the one into the other wouldn’t be a memorable as you might think. They were just names that existed along side each other in Los Angeles.
Here is where my modest home town lies, just 16 kilometers from Downtown LA. That is what I tell people in Denmark. “I come from LA”, which is easier to explain than Montebello!
I remember things like fields with mustard flowers, oil wells in the hills and an easy sort of existence! If I had been my parents, then things would have been a bit different, with a marriage gone bad, losing the house then divorce, but let us not dwell on the negative aspect of Memory Lane!
One day in the 60s, I was riding my bike to a friend’s house, so we could bike together to the library. I crossed the street between 2 parked cars, before continuing toward my friend’s house.
Google Maps – Street View.
The left shot is what my friend would have seen, while on the right, I would be crossing the street from right to left.
I looked right, but not left. When I did, a car managed to hit me throwing me over to the other side of the street! The neighbors gathered about while I spent some quality time on the asphalt. “$36 dollars!” That’s what my Father complained about when the bill for the Ambulance had to be paid.
I should have been concerned if I had changed my underwear that morning, so as to save my mother the shame of not having done so. My school report was never completed, and I don’t remember what my friend did to complete his end of the deal?
I can only find one photo of my cast:
showing the names of all my classmates and family who wanted to show how much they missed me!
But what does all of this have to do with Memory Lane?
It just goes to show, how many things that we’ve experienced, have affected our lives in some way or the other, despite the many years.
I will be traveling down Memory Lane in my former home town and plan on visiting the corner of 6th Street and Lincoln Avenue, trying to make some sense of who I was those many years ago.
I can still see the scar tissue on my left leg, and vividly remember when the doctor removed the wire holding the bones together while it mended.
The Man from U.N.C.L.E. was probably on the nightly TV, with David McCallum -Dr Ducky Mallard, in a younger version than today on NCIS.
They went around shooting each other, while I had my broken leg, and my Father lamented the cost of the Ambulance Ride.
My Mother made sure that I had clean underwear, and was probably planning on divorcing my Father a few years down the line.
My bike became a new Schwinn, with a Sissy Bar, and I was just another skinny kid from “Where” Montebello, which is called Los Angeles for the rest of the world.
So much for memories……