Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Last evening v wasn't feeling good so we took a drive.  We found ourselves driving along the highway that cuts through the lettuce fields of Salinas.  It was just after sundown with a rim of marine layer threatening to envelope the fields.  One man was out walking along the rows checking the equipment and possibly monitoring the irrigation pipes where the plumes of water are rising from in this picture. I don't know why I had it set on sepia, but somehow that is fitting for the Salinas fields.  So many fortunes have been made from them and not just from the dirt itself.  John Steinbeck came from Salinas, a museum dedicated to him and the the farms he wrote about is on Main Street.

Whenever we drive past the miles and miles of fields that comprise the Salinas Valley v is always in awe of what he calls the generosity of the land.  The fields are in production from February through December, each yielding multiples of crops.  Strawberries, lettuce, celery, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, fennel, artichokes, asparagus, kale, radiccio...just on and on.  Once you drive south along the Central Coast stretch of Hwy 101 you pass miles and miles of grape vines.  River Road just south of Salinas boasts numerous Wineries.  Twenty years ago River Road boasted cattle and scrub.  Cattle ranches still exist throughout the warm hills and canyons trailing off the big Salinas Valley. What a bountiful land our California is and always living under the threat of "progress" and pavement.  Redevelopment over development should be the focus.  Look to the empty and crumbling infrastructure in any city or town before sealing the fate of open land under asphalt and cement.  Crops don't grow out of either, and our world is getting smaller, people are getting bigger.  Where do we expect our food, not to mention our air, to come from?

In bocca al lupo. m & v

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