Vandals strike in Glen Ellen
Good deeds abound in our town, canceling out the one bad deed of last week.
That mischief involved a messy bunch of vandals wrecking havoc. The rowdy crew of misfits first littered O’Donnell Lane from the post office driveway to the bridge with shattered shards of broken beer bottles. While the bits of glass – from thumb size to slivers – glinted in the morning sun with a jewel-like beauty, their nuisance and danger were a hazard. That was easily remedied.
But not so the missing memorial marker for Danny Garcia, who died one year ago in April 2011. Danny was one of our cheerful street corner denizens, loved by all and always ready with a smile and cheerful greeting.
Marty Cox, one of his friends, reported to me that morning that the beautiful, carved wooden plaque that George Brockmann III made for Danny was missing, possibly purloined by the same vandals. The local guys searched the creek with no result. Somebody still has that memorial and we’re hoping it will be returned.
Later, George, truly broken-hearted, came by to share the story with me. He had spent months working out the best design and had created multiple rejected versions. “A lot of loving went into that memorial,” he said. It is a relief-carved piece of wood about 12-by-18 featuring Danny’s name and his spirit animal, the wolf.
For the past year, that fitting remembrance of Danny was planted near the bridge, a delicate Japanese maple shading it. It was a lovely memorial reminding folks of this lost friend; it was also a great comfort to Danny’s parents.
The first good deed accomplished that day was cleaning the street of glass. When my sweetie and I headed up there we saw that Karen Bertrand, from the Glen Ellen Inn and two of her hardy workers with industrial brooms and waste bin in hand had already begun. The Sisyphean task was completed in short order, while all of us talked, turning it into a party.
The full circle of goodness will surround that entire event when the late night mischief-makers return Danny’s plaque.
More good deeds in our town would certainly involve the group I call the Glen Ellen Quilters. Not only do they do all the planning, organizing and finishing work on our annual Glen Ellen Village Fair quilt, they also created that stunning Dunbar School reading quilt that graces the wall of the multipurpose room. Additionally, the group creates many, many quilts for the Valley of the Moon Children’s Home during the year. Their goal is to make sure that each child entering that facility is surrounded by the loving warmth of a handmade quilt.
Currently that dedicated group is working on the 2013 Glen Ellen Village Fair Quilt. That’s right: 2013. The 2012 quilt is long since completed. Yes, it does take that long to produce the beautiful blanket that is raffled at our fair.
Pamela Wiley is in charge of the 2013 production and she’s chosen a great theme: food. Yes, the perfect Sonoma Valley choice. So far, Pam team is inspired by luscious veggies – corn, mushrooms, onions, beets – to colorful fruits – pears, cherries, grapes and watermelons. My current favorite is one talented quilter’s colorful cake.
Are you interested in creating a square of your favorite food? New quilters are always welcome. But you must act fast. The finished piece is due in two weeks. Email Pamela at email@example.com.
While plenty of other good news awaits, I’ll end with one more story about the Glen Ellen Inn owners. The aforementioned Karen and her sweetie Chris Bertrand have served lovingly and kindly as surrogate siblings to sweet Toney Pena who recently died.
With his only relatives far away in the Philippines, Chris and Karen handled everything surrounding this man’s passing. Yes, this neighborhood of caring folks reflects a bit of paradise on earth. Even with occasional mischief-makers, it’s the heavenly deeds we remember.
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Share your good news with friends and neighbors in Glen Ellen. Call or write me at 996-5995 or P.O. Box 518, GE 95442. Or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Glen Ellen chatter rarely requires timeliness.