|Race Horses Heading for the Finish Line|
I lived in Los Alamitos when the Los Alamitos Race Track owned all the land along Katella Avenue, and had large pastures where brood mares were pastured, and their foals raised, until they were either trained for racing, or sold to other horse racing barns, or sold as riding horses to the public.
When I lived there, there were even some dairies scattered throughout the general area, which included what is now known as Cerritos, but then was called, "Dairy Valley." A family friend owned one of those dairies. Eventually, over the years, all the dairies were forced out, and moved to more remote areas, such as Norco, in Riverside County, and even to central and northern California, where there was more open land for pasture for their milk cows. Yes, back then, nearly all dairy cows were allowed to spend the day and night in pasture, with actual green grasses on which to graze, and lie in the warm sun. Now, those were contented cows. About every twelve hours, they cows were herded into the milk barn, where they were washed and milked, while eating sweet grain.
|Contented Dairy Cow|
While living in Buena Park, we had our share of excitement, as one morning, when my father opened the front door to leave for work, he saw a huge dust cloud about half a mile away, across the large field beyond the other side of Artesia Blvd. He shut the door, I think to gather his thoughts, and to make sure he wasn't just seeing things. When he opened the door again, there was a long, freight train, with several engines scattered all along the track as far as he could see eastward, from where the train had come. We all looked, and saw that a large semi truck, which had been hauling a "sheep's foot," had apparently been in the train's path.
|Heavy Equipment Hauler|
|Early Morning Freight Train|
From Buena Park, we moved to Westminster, California, which was even more rural at the time, in 1958. We lived on a farm road, called Sugar Avenue, which is now called McFadden. Our house was on acres and acres of land, just on our side of the road. On the opposite side of Sugar Avenue, was more farming land, where they grew celery, cauliflower, broccoli, Blue Lake stringless beans, all varieties of lettuce, as well as carrots. This farming area covered everything between Cannery Avenue, (now called Magnolia) and encompassed at least a mile east of our home, passing Brookhurst Street. My parents did not do the farming here, but since we lived there, and made sure the crops were not invaded by thieves, the farmer who leased the land, allowed us to use whatever we wanted from the fields.
My husband and I lived in Cypress, California, until the property was being sold, about a year after we moved there. The owners were family friends, but were getting on in years, so wanted to unload property they no longer had to worry about maintaining. We were offered the place, but we had not been married long enough to have saved enough for even the down payment. We were also expecting our first child. We opted to return to Los Alamitos, where we had both lived before, and we had family friends who would be living nearby.
|Our Little Girl, All Grown Up (r)|