Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Boy and His Roots

This week I'm at the Connoisseures' Marketplace in downtown Menlo Park, California.  Menlo Park is about 10 miles or so north of San Jose and highway 101 (also known as the Bayshore Freeway here), and south of San Francisco by about 30-something miles.  The downtown core has somehow survived the overgrowth that has taken over a number of smaller communities in this area.  There's a quaintness that makes me feel good whenever I'm in and around one of these smaller towns.  It reminds me of spending time with my Grandfather in neighboring Sunnyvale before progress leveled all but one block of the Sunnyvale downtown core.

I've done a number of shows around this area but this is the first time that I've driven around this area since I was around 9 or 10 years old.  It's amazing the things that I remember and how I know how to get to so many places from 40 years long since past.  What do I remember...

I spent a lot of time at my grandparents home on East McKinley.  They adored me (very true) and much of my younger years were spent in their living room on one of those rope-style woven rugs.  It's the kind that was made from soft cotton and always seemed to be oval in shape and perfect for a young boy to lay on in front of the black and white television.  I recall my Grandmother making me oatmeal for breakfast and occasionally getting a scoop of vanilla ice cream in it; this is one of those weird sounding treats that is not to be knocked until it's tried.  Grandpa Joe worked as a janitor at Westinghouse and always brought me a treat each day at his shift's end; usually, it was a small bag of Planter's Peanuts or something along that line.

Saturday night I tracked down and had dinner at Vesuvio Pizzaria in Santa Clara.  I have no idea how I can remember this place from 43 years back, but the place is celebrating its 50th anniversary and it's still there!  Congratulations to them.  The place was much the way I recall.  Walking into the door and straight ahead is where I place my order; a quick glance onto the wall to see the menu and I order the spaghetti with meat sauce that I remember eating.  I take my number and walk over to the bar and order a "barley pop".  Walking over to my seat, they call my number before I even have a chance to find one.  Hey, I like quick service.

I just into my plate and ahh.  Old noodles briefly brought up to room temperature.  The bread was good.  I'm thinking that you have the picture here.

On to my next adventure.

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