Finding a link to my past

Hi everyone,

It’s pronounced Ah-ho and means garlic in Spanish. I’m mentioned from time to time that I lived in Ajo, Arizona for about four years when I was a boy. On July 13 I posted a picture of me on my first day of school as I set out to walk down the street with my friend Rosemary Geiger (not shown in the picture). Here’s that link. . I have only scattered memories of Ajo and don’t remember many names of kids I knew there. Only weeks into 3rd grade my family moved back to Springfield. I lost track of my classmates and have never been back to Ajo since 1945.

Imagine my amazement and delight when a couple of days ago Cindy Sullivan added a comment to the July 13 post to say she is from Ajo and her mother was a librarian there from the 50s to the 80s. She also informed me of a FB page about Ajo called ajomundo. Ann Havens then commented to say that she’s from Ajo and guessed that judging from my picture she’d say I lived on Morondo Street or Esperanza Street. While I was still smiling from ear to ear over the unexpected discovery, after all these decades, of not one but two people from Ajo, a third joined in. Linda Heard is not only from Ajo, she lived in the same block starting in 1947, only four years after I left Ajo!

I realize that this discovery is more important to me than it might be to you, but finding a link to one’s childhood is an exciting thing. I loved the west. I loved the songs and music. I loved the desert and cactus plants and distant mountains. I began collecting minerals in Ajo, camped at White Horse Lake in the mountains, caught my first fish there, heard bears in the woods, saw my first antelope, breathed in the pine scented high country. When we moved back to Springfield I sobbed. I was leaving my friends and might not ever see them again. And now, thanks to Cindy, Ann, and Linda, I have a connection. Happy day!


6 comments on “Finding a link to my past

    • Good morning, Veda. Thanks for stopping by. I’m on my fourth cup and about ready to hit the writing for the rest of the day. But I definitely plan to explore the FB site about Ajo and look through scrapbooks for a letter I think I have from my classmates in Ajo after we moved back to Springfield.

  1. How funny! I never knew you lived in Ajo. I sometimes go through there on my way between Tucson and San Diego. I enjoy it as its central plaza speaks of grander times. Now it is pretty much a place people pass through on their way to Rocky Point, Mexico.

    • Ajo lives large in my memory even though I was young when we lived there. Rocky Point was a squalid little fishing village then but it played a role in my literary life! Dad brought home some fish from a trip there and Mom was frying some in a skillet when she had to chase me from the room until she could get it on the table. In a pout, I wrote my first poem, about a fish naturally.

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