Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A trip to Californnia

Christmas was approaching and S's family suggested we spend the Holidays with them. They lived South of San Francisco. We took the train from Forth Worth (I think) and went via Los Angeles, with a short lay over in El Paso. I think it took a couple of days. Having S all to myself for that length of time was wonderful and we made the most of the closeness.

When we got to El Paso and had a couple of hours, we decided to cross the border into Mexico. We took a street car over the border, but all the seats were taken, so we stood hanging on to the strops overhead. At one stop, I looked into a store window and there, on display was an electric standard iron. I had been using the only iron I owned, a travel iron which was either scorching what I was ironing or stone cold. I had tried my best to get a new one but everywhere I asked they blamed the war on the shortage. I asked S if we could go back and try to buy one. A benefit for him for most of my ironing was his army togs.

We went back and we did buy the one I saw in the window, the only one in the store. It took a while, what with the language and the getting it out of the window display. By the time we got out and headed toward the border it was getting closer to the trains
e.t.d. And everyone crowded the sidewalks and we could not get on the streetcar because people were already hanging out the doors. So we had to go thru a check point. And it was getting later and later. And I did not have a passport with me. I had to lie.
I had to say I was born in Minnesota. According to friends and foes my accent was disappearing so it might work. It was hair-raisingly scary. But we made it with seconds to spare.

We woke up in Los Angeles and looked out the window and saw the most gorgeous sight. Mountains covered with snow. (much much later we lived in Southern California but never again did I see such beauty. Smog cancelled all that post card beauty. We arrived in Burlingame next morning.


Georgia Hardstark said...

As a Los Angeles native, I'd love to hear more about the city back then. Any little details or thoughts would be lovely (I remember those snow-capped mountains from my childhood...I'd forgotten about them).

Anonymous said...

How exciting, I live right by Burlingame! It's a very beautiful town. Even the tiniest houses cost about $1,500,000. I wonder how much a house in Burlingame went for in 1943...

Anonymous said...

I can say it was a lovely trip of yours.