by James B Toy
James B Toy
Photograph - Digital
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This wooden cross overlooking Carmel Bay is a replica of a cross erected by the 1769 Portola-Crespi expedition as a signal for their supply ship. This replica was erected in 1944 by Harry Downie who was in charge of the Carmel Mission restoration.
My first experience with this cross was circa 1964 when I was a preschooler at nearby Bay School. We took a group hike to the top of the small hill it stands upon. It was quite windy that day, and I found it uncomfortable. I complained about it to a lady with long black hair who worked at the school and who taught us several songs. She was sitting on the ground with her back against the cross, her hands wrapped around her raised knees. She invited me to sit on the ground with her, saying “It's not windy down here.” I did as she suggested and sat down. She was right, it was much less windy near the ground. But the ground was uncomfortable and a little too boring for a four year old full of energy. I don't think I stayed there more than a minute before I was back up and walking around. I didn't realize it at the time, but that lady was Joan Baez who was a volunteer teacher at Bay School!
Photo Copyright James B. Toy.
July 21st, 2019
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