One of my favorite things, growing up in the San Fernando Valley, was that Sunday morning breakfast with the family or that mid-week dinner at your favorite family restaurant. I think it More »
Two and one-half minutes before midnight on March 12th of 1928, a catastrophic event marked the beginning of the end for a town that is no longer.
One of my favorite things, growing up in the San Fernando Valley, was that Sunday morning breakfast with the family or that mid-week dinner at your favorite family restaurant. I think it was my dad’s favorite thing to do, as well. I guess the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree, which makes this such a great topic for the Valley Relics blog.
Family dinners, lunches and breakfast were always a highlight and I always looked forward to the new spot. There’s nothing like kicking the sawdust on the way in to Mike’s Pizza in Van Nuys and the anticipation of the hot rolls that were about to be served. As a treat, on the way home, on a hot summer evening, we would stop at our local Dairy Queen for a vanilla soft-serve ice cream cone, with plenty of napkins in hand. Sometimes it was a trip to Alphy’s off of Sepulveda and Nordhoff for two eggs over-easy, bacon and hash browns. I always loved to watch my dad in action. He loved food and he took it very seriously. Watching him put his name on the waiting list and making sure that no one got ahead of the family was a common sight.
On the usual drive through the valley, passing through Northridge, I pulled over to respond to a text. My refusal to text while driving incited a different response, this time around. Lost in the shuffle of the daily to-dos and the seemingly endless chirps of my cell phone, I found myself in the parking lot of the old Tower Records.
I find myself with a desperate need to know my history, where it went and why. I always catch myself trying to explain to travelers and the newer generations about what used to be the landmarks, the icons and the architecture of the San Fernando Valley.
Sometimes, we are so accustomed to a sight that there comes a point when we stop seeing it and just assume it’s there. After all, we could use that energy saved for something useful, like trying to text while we drive, or scanning the radio vehemently in hopes that better music will surface. It’s interesting when we take the time to look around and wonder just how long those assumed sites have been there or just exactly how long they’ve been missing. Unfortunate weather and a sweet tooth both deserve a thank you, for helping us go out of our way to remember and relive one of these very places.
From Native Americans, to the Portola Expedition and the first “foreign” settlers, a countless number of people have lived and died in what we call the San Fernando Valley today. It is believable that wherever you have lived, someone has lived there before. Have you ever felt as if the past has left more than just relics behind? There was a definite time in my childhood where this kind of overwhelming presence encouraged my family to leave our valley home. After all, the valley has been here much longer than you or me.