2021 #3 “The Castle Park Chronicles” #1 © April 21, 2021

Early 80’s….maybe 1981, Michael Anthony came to the Castle Park in Riverside, California. I was working the snack bar. I calmly asked this handsome man, “Aren’t you the drummer for Van Halen?” He just looks at me kind of puzzled and says, “I’m the bass player.” I felt so dumb at that moment. I knew that… but I was star struck. I sure blew that moment.

~vicki~

2021 #2 “Mundelein, Illinois” © February 16, 2021

I have always wanted to go fishing. When I was in the 5th grade we lived in Mundelein, Illinois. I walked to this lake with my bamboo pole in hand and a safety pin for my hook. Hoping for the best. I sat there all day. Nothing.

Here it is 50+ years later and I’m still want to go fishing. It’s never going to happen.

-vicki-

2021 #1 “TACO HOUR” © January 11, 2021

1978-79? I worked at a place called TACO HOUR in Downey or Norwalk, California next to a Kmart. It had a clock on the face of a giant donut. We had the best food! We experimented making things. I had so much fun there. When I first applied for the job, the owner hired me on the spot because I filled out my application faster than anyone else. It had big steam tables that to turn on or off you had to stick your arm under it where the flames were. Only burnt my arm one time… that’s all it took! Beano’s were 50¢. Two little corn tortillas with beans and whatever else you wanted. It was like a little Mexican sandwich. Ohhhh so good. The owner also taught me how to cut onions! (This is not the correct photograph, but close) I also worked at that Kmart for a short time.

-vicki marie gibbons-

2020 #12 ” Mundelein” © December 14, 2020

5th grade in Mundelein Illinois,  I don’t remember the reason but my mom spent a lot of time making little finger sandwiches in the shapes of these cookie cutters…heart, diamond, spade, and club for a party in my the classroom. I do remember they were a big hit among all the kids in the class. Maybe 1968? My mom was wonderful,♡ Sharon Joan Ippen ♡ STILLMAN STRONG

-vicki-

2020 #11 “Capri Motel” © October 28, 2020

2010 was a really bad year. The Capri Motel in Butte, Montana put the boys and I up for free. We were homeless and trying to head back to Arizona. The year my mother died. It was late fall because there was snow on the ground. Salvation Army paid for a couple nights and Capri gave us one more night because of the bad weather. I have a Matchbook cover that I just bought on eBay to add to my memories. My wonderful niece Bridget Heather Gibbons brought us a pizza dinner to the room our last night there.

-vicki-

~

2020 #10 “Zeno’s Motel” © August 27, 2020

We stopped here many years ago. We were staying at The Drury Inn just east of Zeno’s Motel. Picked up matchbooks or whatever I could find for my friend Xeno, Randall Hogan. This motel is now closed/gone. I just bought a postcard on eBay for my personal memories of traveling back and forth to and from Illinois/California/Arizona, we always passed the billboard advertising this Motel. Rolla, Missouri ROUTE 66. I remember it long before this trip. So thankful that I stopped this one time and went inside ♡ Max and Harry must have been babies. I am almost positive that my niece Holly was also with on this trip. I do remember it was raining.~vicki~

2020 #8 “Walmart July 26, 2020” © July 26, 2020

WALMART JULY 26, 2020
Well that was almost a panic attack. My chest hurts. Went to Walmart for the first time since Feb. WTFlip did I buy? 8 cans of tuna. 5 – 1 pound rolls of frozen turkey meat (mechanically separated), 2 vegetable oil sprays, tomatoes which were bad so I didn’t get many, 2 bottles of mouthwash, 2 strawberry apple sauces..the 8 pack minis for work…. IT DIDN’T MAKE SENSE. I haven’t been inside Walmart since the remodel and I was lost. People are A-holes. Nobody follows the signs on row directions. What part of DO NOT ENTER don’t you understand? I was vocal about it. BUT…..Good things do happen here ***Lots of real cashiers!!! I love real cashiers ♡ Social Distancing waiting in line and this guy behind me was breathing down my neck. When the people ahead of me moved up…he tried to go ahead of me…REALLY??? I AM A PARANOID WOMAN HAVING A HOT FLASH…. DON’T EVEN TRY IT BUDDY

-vicki-

2020 #7 “Grandpa’s Handkerchief” © July 19, 2020

My grandpa’s handkerchief. I never really looked at it this closely before. My mom or my grandmother must have lovingly made it for him. Look at the tiny little hand sewn stitches. I wish I would have known the history of this handkerchief. Stories lost with time. Grandma and Grandpa were in my dreams last night. Getting on the train to go home. In the mid 70’s they took Amtrak from Illinois to California round trip to visit us. They also took the bus one time. I wish my memory was better.

-vicki-

2020 #6 “Zody’s, North Long Beach and The Luau Manor” © June 19, 2020

1971. We were poor. Mom worked her ass off but we were still poor. Living in the Luau Manor apartments in North Long Beach, California was still fun under the circumstance. The department store Zody’s was kitty corner and Eton’s Market across the street. Eton’s Market let my mom run a line of credit. Bless their hearts. Kmart was just down the street on the left.

It was around Christmas time. I would dumpster dive in Zody’s dumpsters. They threw out so much good stuff. I found wrapping paper too. I supplied all of our Christmas presents that year. Also, on the vacant lot next to Zody’s on the corner there was a Christmas tree lot. Days before Christmas it was abandoned. I brought a beautiful tree home and set it up. Put all the presents I had wrapped under it. We would not have had a tree that year but things just fell into place. Raymond Daily and I somehow took over the lot selling all of the trees! The electricity was still on so we had lights at night. We sold the trees very cheap, maybe $5 each. Raymond and I split the money 50/50. I think I bought my mom something nice and myself something but gave her most of the money.

I remember we had a cheap artificial cardboard fireplace and my younger brothers put on a show in front of our personal apartment and charged the neighborhood children .25 cents to watch.

It was a Merry Christmas.

-vicki-

note: I’ve tried to find Raymond Daily several times over the years…without any luck.

Music…Need I say more?