My cousin Becky, who lives in Dallas and vacations in Galveston every summer just wrote an excellent blog about post-Hurricane Ike Galveston, wondering if the character of the town she loves will be lost forever.
This made me think of Santa Cruz, where I lived from 1984 to 1991. I moved away very briefly in 1989, and while I was away, the Loma Prieta Earthquake struck, 7.1 on the Richter scale and epicentered in nearby San Francisco.
Someday I will try to describe the my main Santa Cruz hang-out to you, the Pacific Garden Mall. More than a mall, it was a cultural center, open-air, tree-shaded, full of quaint shops, cafes and beer gardens, peopled by musicians, performers, hippies, street people, apocalyptic evangelists, surfers, punks, etc. I knew it like the back of my hand.
It looked something like this (picture me behind that guitar):
But when I got back from Seattle, here is what I found:
It was so disorienting. I'll try to find more pics of before and after. They did finally rebuild, but it was different. Nice, but different. And it took YEARS!
Like any other street in any other town. *yawn*