We came. We came from Massachusetts and cold winters and tired jobs. We came across the Virginia’s and the Carolina’s and the locus of Texas and through the timber of Cloudcroft and the open sky of Santa Fe. We came to where American’s go to retire in their twenties and live sunset-to-sunset with tacos de pescado and cerveza’s. We came from Massachusetts to San Diego. And we are not the only ones.
Aztec histories are zoetic in paint and surround a bronze statue of the Mexican hero Emiliano Zapata. In this neighborhood of assassins and fisherpeople, el esta vivo. He is surrounded by three other vaqueros who owe allegiance to his Agrarian revolution. Called Zapatistas, our hero bandits are birds of paradise who hijacked the 739 train. They fight for a return of land to the indigenous people of Mexico.
I met E.S. Babcock and H.L Story. The year was 1886. Babcock was a railroad man from Indiana. Story- a piano man from Chicago. These men of vision contemplate the Coronado Peninsula as the future site of the Hotel Del Coronado. Standing on the uninhabited wild sagebrush beach, their hotel will become a symbol of the gilded age.
Every hotel has a ghost story, and the Del does not disappoint. Her grave reads: Kate Morgan, also known as Lottie A. Bernard, died Nov. 29, 1892 at the age of 24 years. On a cold, dark night, she walks in the light of the moon, lifeless from her self-inflicted gunshot, waiting for her lover to join her at the Del.
My neighborhood was a noir movie-set where characters act out scenes for a new sci-fi picture. Behind the El Cajon Boulevard sign, an alien spacecraft beams-up the iconic North Park water tower. A dimly lit man-in-black is a bird of paradise who stands under the vintage 1930’s lamp post, watching the empty streets of San Diego stretch into the night sky.