MOST Newsletters Table of Contents


The MOST Newsletter Autumn 1999 Volume VI #3

A Project of The Peregrine Foundation

P.O. Box 460141 / San Francisco, CA 94146-0141 / telephone: (415) 821-2090
/ fax (415) 282-2369
Staff: Ramon Sender, editor; Vivian Gotters, Pam Read Hanna, Sandi Stein,
Contributing Editors; Tomas Diaz & David Hatch, HTML wizards.
The MOST Newsletter is an open forum for fact and opinion, and encourages
the expression of all views.
The opinions expressed in the letters published are those of the
correspondents and do not necessarily reflects those of MOST editors or

Autumn 1999 Volume VI #3      i - ii- iii

-------------- "What Go 'Round Come Around" --------------

Autumn, with amazing weather, but meanwhile we bid good-bye to Brother
Tuck, who blasted off for the hyperdimensions with hardly time to say
goodbye to his dear Suzi and the girls. Tuck had a heart condition, but
still was a young man of 49 years. One moment he was seated at his computer
laughing heartily at something he was reading, and the next minute he was
gone. Much love and condelences to Suzi, Barbara, Julie, & Lisa, and a BIG
BADABA to one of the most dedicated of Morningstar Brothers. ALSO, Coyote
(Paul Otto) is back in the hospital with pneumonia. He needs serious
wellbeams from all.
Your MOST Faithful Staff

-------------- "Meanwhile, Back Off The Ranch" --------------

Click here to see photo of Lou, Pam and Don
Most Postees

Ramon Sender, 9/3/99: I've taken on the 40-hr-a-wk job as Adminitrative Director of the Noe Valley Ministry, which is so close to our house that our cordless phone dials out from my new office there. The NVM functions as a community center for our neighborhood as well as a More Light Presbyterian Church (More Light signifies that they do not discriminate against anyone for the sexual orientation, etc.) The logo for the church is an eight-sided Celtic-type knot that looks a lot like the morning star symbol. Whaddiya know... I like the energy there... but it's a challenge to get the office to where it runs itself. Judy makes me lunch every day and walks it across the street.
Now, something important!
Due to a number of reasons -- my lack of time, The MOST Newsletter's lack of funds, I am only going to send hard copy to those of you who actually have subscribed. However the issue will be posted on and be available there for anyone who wants to read it. I figure, what with most libraries connected to the Internet these days, those who want to can always read it/download it there. If you want a hard copy, you can send me the wherewithal. Obviously we'll continue to scholarship a few who either are too far out (!) to get to a library or who need the boost. Meanwhile, please get rich, win the Lotto or something, and send me lots of money. Then I can quit my job and badaba what I badaba best -- don't ask what that is. Badaba,

Corky, 7/19/99: Terry and John-John's oldest son, Areic, got married to lovely Jessica on Saturday afternoon at a beautiful ranch garden in the middle of a lemon orchard in Refugio canyon about a half mile from the ocean and 15 miles north of Santa Barbara. Terry and I left the beach at noon today and drove 8 hours back home to Napa where we met our new granddaughter, Gillian (Lily), who had arrived Wednesday at 12:54 am while we were driving down the coast. She's a sweetheart. Were glad to be home. Ob-la-di, ob-la-da, life goes on, RAH! La-la-la-la life goes on.....

Tomas, 9/3/99: Speaking and thinking, writing and talking. Words are being placed online. People seeing and believing, understanding and thinking. We are part of the whole, foul language and all. As we speak and write, things become clear. Words have meaning, ideas are good, love is ideal, pain is understood. We are the barons of our thoughts. Thanks for writing! The life and times of the Morningstar/Wheeler are being understood. Whispers and Chants, badaba, love, peace,

Jodi Mitchell, 9/3/99: Just wanted to say "Hi!" to Bishop... thank you for remembering me! I really enjoyed your story and hope you continue on. I do plan to write more as time and brainpower and creative impulse permits. Did you know my good friend, Pat, married to Gypsy Paul and their child, Eden? They are a future story. She, Moonflower and Nasu were my best female friends. You will hear about all of them soon. I've been meaning to welcome you aboard, Winston... have not yet made it to
Austin but will look you up when I do. My sister lives in walking distance from David Pratt's gallery... we could meet there! Saw Jimmie Dale Gilmore recently in a small local dive -- what a treat that was! He reawakened my Austin bug!
Walked down to the Haw River yesterday. They closed off the old bridge and made it a foot bridge -- you can follow a path down to the river... Boy, was it pretty!.. I saw two blue herons flapping wings and doing some sort of dance on the center island. Tomorrow I'm going to an old-fashioned farmers day, a barn dance and bluegrass, country and gospel music, antique tractor pull, homemade ice cream, pinto beans, lemonade, local arts and crafts, etc... Saturday going to watch local master potter fire up his
kiln. He has one of the largest kilns in the world and only fires her up once a year. He makes unique giant pots and if he messes up, he loses a year's worth of work and income. The handmade kiln is a work of art in itself, like a giant serpent painted with designs, symbols and glyphs. See all of you in three days, after the holiday... Have a good one! Love,

Joanie Sutton, 9/2/99: Hi Ramon and everybody! The MOST Newsletter is getting better all the time. So in my incarnation as young hippy girl, I throw flower leis over all of your necks, and blow kisses as we run together through the virtual meadow! Jodi continues to amaze with her wonderful memoirs. I don't think I ever met you when you were at Wheelers. I may have been gone by that time, myself. Tomas is so steady and inspiring with his contributions! And now Bishop, whom I also don't remember is adding great memories too. Thanks for all the links. Love,

Alicia Bay Laurel, 9/5/99: My memories of my days at Wheeler Ranch have come full circle this year as I spent three months integrating information gathered over the last three years into the revised edition of Living On The Earth. Naturally, the revision had to be done entirely by hand, with a primitive light table, rubber cement, white-out, pens, and scissors, since the original was, too. It was a long deep communion with the self I was at 19 and 20; the dance was to maintain her spirit rather than let the person I have become at 50 take over. I delivered the finished artwork to the offices of Random House in New York on August 18. The publication date is April 23, 2000, Earth Day. Many say it should be released before Y2K, but the publishers seem unconcerned. Like them, I am not planning on any large scale calamities. Coincidentally, this summer I also sold the wedding coordinating business on Maui that I started eleven years ago and am devoting myself entirely to freelance art, writing and music. I am planning to go on the road in the summer of 2000, partly to promote the book, partly to have the sort of freewheeling adventures I used to have before I cornered myself into a service business for so long. I am hoping to see
some of my old friends along the way. If there is a bookstore or art gallery with a sort of alternative/ecological /spiritual focus in your area, let me know. I'll contact them to see if they'd be interested in hosting an evening event.
Gathering up the past is a process of adding value to one's self. Bringing old friendships into new life is nourishing as well. I applaud this forum and all who are offering here. Aloha...

David Hatch, 9/7/99: Dear MOST Digesters, Pam suggested online in The Most Digest #75 that we put in $25 a month to keep Tuck's website going. My opinion is that much of his site can migrate to the site where the newsletters are posted. The ic/morningstar site could be THE
morningstar site, with a M* home page much like Tuck's (except maybe with new content and [I hope] a new background). Important pages, such as Pam's M* Chronicles could be placed there. Also, the ic/morningstar the digest recently have much content that could be used, along with some of his
philosophy and views as expressed on pages at his site. Anyone have a good picture of him? Hope everyone here (in the USA) had a good holiday! Badaba,

Click here to see photo of Lou reading with his glasses on his forehead.
 Lou at Pam & Findley's - Nashville, 1992?
Tomas Diaz, 9/7/9: Tuck's site was mostly links to other site. I do not remember seeing anything that he wrote. I tried finding a "bio" on the sight, no luck. He did love to chat. I have to think before I chat and then the other chatters is gone. Who remembers "Lata Chatter"? My computer crashes every time I set up the chat (mirc). I think Tuck's site is his. It is the "Morningstar Homepage." The page is Tuck. I do not know what Suzie wants to do with the site? The site is fine as is, if it can be maintained.
I would find it very hard to change something that Tuck created.
Pine needles make a soft bed, I was informed that there are no pine needles
under a redwood. Thanks,

Dick Fairfield, 9/8/99:  (editor of  "The Modern Utopian" writes in): Ramon, I just finished reading the Autumn '96 (!!!!) MOST on the Lou Life celebration, reading in one long uninterrupted session while on vacation, resisting the continuing impulse to write my own eulogy to Lou.
As you may recall, I had started the first underground press magazine, The Modern Utopian, in the mid-60s, and became completely devoted to the emerging commune movement. Personally, I was never a full participant; always an enthusiastic supporter. By the time I moved to Sebastapol as the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Sonoma County, I was fully aware of Lou's great gift as an orator. The kindly Fellowship folk were delighted to have me as a minister on the fringe of that profession,
importing piles of sand to the Sunday morning services for everyone to play in, while I recited from Kahlil Gibran "On Becoming As Little Children". I could not speak or proclaim or even begin to wax as eloquently as Lou; so, as frequently as I dared, Lou became my invited guest to impart THE WORD to
the congregation.
What a joy it was to hear him speak. I hardly remember what he said (something about taking a little opium on plane flight across country made the trip much faster); but, how he said it with so much humor will always be embedded in my soul and always remain an inspirational role model. In those days, I'm sure, I sat in awe of him, not as a guru but as someone larger than life, not just because of his size.
Those were my theological days, far removed from the present? Another lifetime. Then, I could have imagined Lou as "the Father" and you, Ramon, "the Son," playing the accordion, dispensing the word, and I (along with many, many others) were each a piece of "the Holy Spirit" spreading the word further about community, freedom, peace, and above all else, the love of life. The one statement from Lou I have so often quoted was his response to a question about people who came to Morningstar and contributed absolutely nothing: "Ah, yes, 'basket cases', he replied, "They are the ones who are put here to test your ability to love." To my knowledge, Lou always passed that test.
I arrived in Berkeley about a year after you had moved to Morningstar. By the time I moved to Sebastapol in 1969, Morningstar was already under heavy litigation and "land clearing". It was on Bill Wheeler's Ranch that you were building your new home. My companion and fellow commune traveler, at
the time, was Consuelo Sandoval. She knew you in the early 60s through the experimental dance and music scene in San Francisco. When we came to visit you at Wheelers, we marveled at the home you had built almost literally in the ground. As supportive as I was, I could not see myself living there. In fact, after
a few more months in Sebastapol, we moved back to the City -- definitely city types; even though I did grow up in a very small rural town. My macrobiotic diet of vegetables and brown rice lasted less than 6 months in Sebastapol; I preferred those decadent Italian restaurants in Occidental! I must say, I felt less guilty about all that when I ran into Lou and Rena at the local movie theater munching on bags of popcorn. ("Wow!", I thought, "Lou goes to the movies and eats popcorn too!")
Now, I'm caught up reading all of THE MOST: Jodi and Tomas' accounts were fascinating as were many others. Reading about encounters with the police brought back my own memories, of course: My old weather-worn blue station wagon was a great target. On a midday, a cop stopped me for a broken taillight. He sat me in his vehicle and wanted to discuss why I had a "Don't Eat Grapes" bumper sticker. When I moved to LA, not only the station wagon but also my long, long hair, beard, and hippy-style clothes got attention. I got a ticket for "jaywalking" at midnight on a deserted street (no joke). Another time a policeman stopped me and asked for my driver's license. He read the address: "PO Box F". "Oh, so you live in a box, huh", he inquired sarcastically. "No, not any more! I live down that street," I pointed.
Your dog story in the latest issue (Summer ' reminded me of the feisty little toy poodle I had at the time. He would have loved participating in that fight. Because I was traveling so much, I left him with San Francisco friends who fattened him up with table scraps and rich doggy treats. He did not live to a ripe old age. Today I have another small mellow dog, a Maltese, whose 3rd greatest love is chasing our two cats. His "mommie", my wife of 17 years, is his second love. His 1st love, of course is food, without which I would get none of his attention. As small and mellow as he is, he'd be right in their fighting with the rest of 'em, when food calls. (The moral of the story, if there is one, is: First and foremost, feed all of us throughout the world well, and we'll avoid a lot of bloodshed and pain.) Until later, the Most good vibes and loving wishes to all, Richard.
PS: Ramon, I'm finally after several years going to contribute my $25.00 again. It is about time. I give $5.00 - $10.00 a year to the Disabled Vets and the Veterans of Foreign Wars; so, why not to the Vets of Local Communes! You're the MOST -- keep publishing.
PPS: In the USA, communes may have faded; but, I believe, they have left a very positive mark on the present: Where I live, for example, in South West Florida, all the baby boomers from up North are buying condos. Although living in separate apartments, they can and do mingle with each other a lot, learning to get along, sharing the same common spaces and common expenses... on a level far greater than most Americans ever thought of doing in the 60s. Land trusts are also springing up all over. (One Florida lawyer makes a good living selling books and tapes on how to go about setting one up.) Given the "right intentions", land trusts can indeed be used to "deed the land to God". Bravo to those Sonoma and Bodega Land trust participants!!

Vivian Gotters, 9/19/99: Hi to All!! I'm trying to keep up with the reading of MOST. Lots of great material! I agree with Bishop, please let's not have too much paranoia gumming up the works! Good to hear from Denise. Tell us how you are. To Suzi, Lisa, Julie and Barbara, I send my love. I remember
vividly the birthday party you had for me. What did I do with the tape of that party. Did I give it to you and Tuck, Suzi? I hope so. Actually, this is a test... I'm not sure I'm replying on the right path. So, I'll send this and see what happens. Love to all of you, Vivian

Bea Phair, 7/27/99: One thing about the last newsletter, Pam said one of the rooms in the adobe was Waymen's and then me and the kids moved in....NOT... me and the kids with David Pratt's major help along with Charley and many others built that room and after Emanuel was born and Willie left, Waymen moved in. About 2 weeks later I went to find Patrick (Diev) who went with Willie for 3 weeks and it had been more like 3 months. I didn't get back so Waymen and others sold my family heirlooms and tied
one on. It surprized me Pam got mixed up since she delivered Emanuel in that room with Willie, David and Penny in attendance. Guess I'm not the only one forgetting the details. That's whats nice about lots of people telling the story. You don't need to repeat the bit about Waymen and others selling my stuff. I guess I'm still a little sorry about thoes things being gone. I'm sorry Waymen is gone that way too.
Eulater Be

Section Two: Tuck Feature
Click to see photo of Tuck with canine-consuming feline, Eowyn.

Sandi Stine, 8/20/99: Tuck Remembered and More Well, I got through to Suzie tonight after calling Coyote, Peggy and Bishop, White Feather, and information to find Bart's phone number. I spoke with him and he confirmed that Tuck's youngest daughter, Barbara had called to say that Tuck had a heart attack this morning and died. I then got Suzie's number and spoke with her. She is upset but has her family around her and seemed as well as could be expected. She loved Tuck very much and he was good to her, so he will be missed. She said he was at the computer laughing one minute and gone the next. That seems like a fitting parting for Brother Tuck, nes't pas? She is calling me tomorrow to tell me of arrangements. They will bury him in Maryland, and I didn't have the heart to tell her about the ashes at Morningstar thing, oh well, some things cannot be unfixed.
I think its' strange that today is also the day my father died some ten years ago, in the morning. coinkidink, eh?
I'm kind of surprised, (of course I thought Tuck was dead for years, some time ago, so much so, I wrote deceased on a marriage license and became a bigamist). I'm not feeling nparticularly sad, but I will tell you there are two things he did that I truly love him for. The first was that he brought me to live at Morningstar, and while I had lived at Wheeler's and been to M* before I met him, he knew the teritory and everybody in it. He was the social bridge for that shy, young girl, who spent the better part of her
time hiding in the woods avoiding all the way most cool folks, because they were all so cool. He introduced me to Lou, and Ramon, and Coyote, and Louie (lion), Barry Plunker Adams. He took me to Marble Mount Washington, the birthplace of the rainbow tribe, where we walked deserters across the
border to Hope, B.C. I met my Art delivering the Kaliflower intercommunal newsletter in our apartment at 1660 Waller, in 1969...we would not find each other as partners til some 25 years later. Willie B, Jon-Jon and Terry, Pam Hanna, who became my ally on the bulletin board from hell. So in some sense, Tuck
brought me to all of you, which has meant more to me over the years than most other things in my life.
And never mind all that other shit, which there was plenty of, and we all know it. What did'ja expect from a moral anarchist?
The second wonderful thing he did, was that fine piece of internet art, the morningstar home page. Suzie says that she wants to keep that going, and is hoping that someone will be syssop for it. I hope so too, it was probably the best work Tuck ever did in his life.
So how we are all shaped and shifted by one another, and what comes to really matter in the end is that we were loved and loved. Wonder if he found Lou and their arguing yet. Thanks for all the all, Abadaba, catch you on the flip-flop.
Bart mentioned a piece I wrote some time ago about Bolinas, it is the only piece I talked about Tuck in (short of our conversations on the most). I am sending it with this message. Love to all in you that lives, and all beyond you that loves. Badaba, Sandi

Sandi Stine, 8/20/99: Deathdance: circa 1973 

It was 1973, and except for a few militant new age holdouts and twelve year old wanna be's, the dream was over. Half a million marchers against a war never properly named couldn't catch the attention of a bunch of blind, corrupt bastards masquerading as an administration in Washington, D.C., and an awful lot of acid heads are trading in tickets to the land of enlightenment for droppers, points, and bags of stuff that take them to the way far down land of nowhere. Not what I would call a banner year in the chronicles of higher consciousness!
The Haight was a graveyard, a bleak and littered ending for brightly colored innocence. Hollow-eyed junkies and speed freaks stood knee deep in dead dreams, pale ghouls waiting to cop. And it seemed like every day more people were enlisting in the zombie regiments of the addicted. I tried a couple of survivor guilt and heroin cocktails, but shooting dope never did much for me except make me throw up and then have to lie very still in a dark place. It was too hard to stay in the Haight, and since self destruction through drugs seems untenable, I did the next best thing -- I left!
So me, Tuck my ex-digger husband, and Eowyn, the dog-eating cat escaped the city, and found a friendly refuge in Bolinas. We inherited a wonderful house built into the western faced cliffs of RCA beach, aptly named the ''Cliff Boat" and adjusted to our new life of self-imposed exile. I only met the blue-eyed , wild haired merchant marine who built that house once when he stopped by and spent an hour telling us in loving detail about the cobalt blue and brick flagstone floor. He described himself as a frustrated
shipwright who was forced to practice his craft on dry land. I didn't really understand, until the first time it stormed and the cliff boat walls creaked long sounds while the whole place swayed, just like a boat riding
out the rhythms of wind and surf. Even after months of living there, the salt rains whipping across the windows would still wake me up wondering if we hadn't finally achieved the mad shipbuilder's dream and worked loose of our mooring to set sail across the frothy sea! Yes, all things considered, Bolinas and the Cliff boat house were a wonderful place to stitch up the sails of my soul. Life was simple. It had to be since we were trying to avoid the money wheel. We had to haul our drinking water from the stream a quarter of a mile down the beach, and being broke, we ate a lot of rice, millet, and spaghetti. I found an old beaten oak table orphaned by the side of the road, and it took a whole morning of lifting and dragging it through the chaparral to get it to the house, and then another week to sand and polish it. But when it was finally done, it proved well worth the effort. It was rich, beautiful, and and useful for making jewelry which we spirited into the city and sold to the tourists cruising GhiradeIli square looking for authentic hippie trinkets.
Things on the cliffs were quiet and mellow. Excepting of course times when friends would bring their hapless dogs into the house. It usually took all of three or four minutes before all hell broke loose, as Eowyn had a psychotic response to dogs. I had found her in the rain three years earlier at Morningstar Ranch, clawing insects from under the bark of a large redwood. She was smart, half-starved, and fearless (hence her moniker). I fed her, and we became fast friends. She was, by far, the best traveling companion I ever had, affectionate and uncomplaining regardless of our transportation situation. She traversed the country with me, up, down, coast to coast , in cars, buses, and trains without a growl or a qualm. If she was tired, she slept in my pack, or rode curled up in my lap, happy to be stretched out watching the passing scenery. It was only when we became stationary for any length of time that she become territorial, and when that imperative awoke the dog problem came with it. After all Eowyn was the better part of Burmese, a direct descendent in that ancient lineage of temple cats, and by her reckoning any canine in sight or scent was game. She would stalk them. And I'm not talking about friendly teasing and chasing stuff -- I'm talking about deep and malevolent, murderous intent. A dog -- any dog on her turf was cause to wind herself up into instinctual overdrive, and attack in a screaming
maelstrom of fur, which then required at Ieast two people to peel her off of her unfortunate victim. Her fury was unmatched and undaunted by size, bulk, temperament, or breed. I am now convinced after being captain of that canine rescue squad for many years, that cat was some kind of karmic kitty avenger, sent to make reparation for every cat that had ever suffered at a dog's mercy. I know for a fact that somewhere outside of Boston is a large Husky that she personally dissuaded from cat-chasing for life. These cat/dog scenarios took their toll on social visits, after all it was difficult to carry on a conversation with someone who's busy first aiding their pooch's torn up nose while the psychotic cat locked in the broom closet is yowling and slamming herself against the barred door. The best thing about these scenes were they were one trial learning events for everybody. People did come back to visit, they just never brought Rover over again. Other than these periodic feline rampages, we managed to hold the psychic carnage to a minimum, slowing our lives to match the migrations of the sea lions, whales, and Canadian geese.
That summer was good to us. I found fresh watercress and hand fed brown rice to the Canadian Geese stragglers that managed to get themselves caught and banded at the bird observatory up the road. It was an idyIic existence for hippie renegades, peaceful and perfect, living slow and deliberately, keeping time with the rest of the life forms sharing the planet. I knew how living was supposed to feel, and that I would never fret, be frantic, or forget that feeling again. The first November storm swallowed up the Farallons for about four days. But nature's unpredictability was far more tolerable, than speculating about human action, and a persistent rumor had it that the Coast Guard had purchased our beach front, cliffs, and all the land for almost a mile around us, on which they planned to build a communication station. We had no direct information. No one showed up to talk to us, There were no posted notices. But anything to do with military endeavors and personnel, no matter how benevolent always made my intuition twitch.
It must have been two or three in the morning when these four guys in fatigues broke through the bedroom door. They rammed it so hard that the frame burst and brought them tumbling in on top of the bed, and us - scaring me straight out of my wits and a sound sleep. They didn't speak to us and the only response we could get to our questions was a brusque "shut up and get fucking dressed". I wished them a happy (although somewhat sarcastic) Thanksgiving and one of them snickered meanly. They were then
nice enough to shine the flashlight elsewhere while I got dressed. That act seemed the extent of their etiquette, as they neither asked our names or introduced themselves. I couldn't see their faces in the dark. I knew they were dressed in khaki, and had large military issue flashlights which they were pointing into every corner and cupboard in the house. When they were satisfied poking and prodding the interior space, they all moved outside, except for one big stiff dude who stood in the door and reeled off an
officially memorized notice that we were trespassing on U.S. military property, and were subject to federal prosecution unless we vacated the premises immediately. I suddenly got scared, wondering if they were going kill us and try to dispose of our bodies. Two of them came back in and answered my silent reverie by tossing my oak table through the bedroom window. I heard it break as it hit the base of the cliff. They told us we had twenty minutes to vacate and they busied themselves outside again. We scrambled, snatching up everything we had of value: clothes, jewelry, tools, and musical instruments. We rolled up sleeping bags and stuffed our packs in record time. I tossed whatever was left into garbage bags and called the cat, but there was no sign of her. I figured she probably bolted when the eviction committee showed up. A voice growled that our time was up. We gathered up our things and carried
them up the hill away from the house. I turned around to go back and get the food and heard the seaward windows shattering. I walked around to the front of the house, and watched the uniforms try to tear the benches from the galley floor. The workmanship held up to their pilage pretty well. They gave up and one guy lugged a kerosene container inside. I started forward to tell him the history of the house, its builder, the flagstone floor, but I knew that my words would have been a sacred prayer spoken in some strange tongue that meant nothing to this guy and his world. I choked on the importance of what I couldn't say and crouched down crying in the coastal sage. They carried out their orders with a matter-of-fact efficiency, and the house burned quickly in the steady pacific wind. In the dawn there was
little Ieft, save the flagstone floor covered with twisted debris and the smell of smoke hissing from the hardwood remains. With one last look at their handiwork they warned us that "we'd better be gone when they came back". they tromping off carelessly through the brush, rattling the empty camouflage can. The mist closed in around us and we stood in the damp trying to comprehend the damage. I walked to the edge of the cliff, and saw my table smashed on the driftwood stumps below. I thought of dragging it all the way from the road, hand sanding out the gouges and weather stains, and polishing the oak. It had been a Iabor of love, like hauling water, like Iiving here. And I wondered what kind of labor our houseburning was for the men who had just carried out the task. I wandered through the ruins and found some broken bags of millet and rice that hadn't burned. I scattered the remaining grain for any wayward geese that might happen by, when I finished Eowyn was sitting on my pack staring into the scattering ashes. I walked over and petted her, offering a ride. She jumped off, and disappeared into the brush. Tuck and I mutely shouldered our packs, adjusting the straps once, and then again. Mine seemed heavier than it ever, and I had to adjust it a third time before bringing up the rear of our fog bound homeless band heading for the Mesa. When we crested the hill, I looked back. I could still made out the mosaic
pattern of flagstones underneath the collapsed debris below us. I had a burning hope that those flagstones would stay set in that hillside long after the Coast Guard had ceased to exist. It was a comforting thought,
something to keep me warm on the long walk across the fields to the road back to San Francisco.

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