Monday, March 26, 2012

The "Singing Senator" Bob Huff, Robins and Love takes Work

Robins are year round residents of the San Gabriel Valley

Some "harbinger of spring". Less than an hour after the robin decided to check out our garden, a full 2" of rain hurled full tilt on what was to be our "date night" ; the Spring Re-election Gala for Bob Huff. If  a political fundraiser doesn't asound like much of a date- you've never heard California's"Singing Senator" croon away in any of the 7 or so languages he performs in. 

Courtesy Photo
 Bob was my replacement when I left the Diamond Bar Planning Commission. Lacking the edgines so prevalent in the popular political culture- the conservative Republican is able to get endorsements from even the liberal Los Angeles Times. To paraphrase the editorial board in one election, they might not agree with Huff on much, but the conversation would be productive. 

Bob cherishes and protects my favorite word in the political vocabulary "freedom." How he has gone on to serve a wider constituency is something  this homebody would never have considered. So in a way, I guess my greatest gift to politics was quitting ):-

Being a Planning Commissioner is an experience that changes how you see the world. I saw urban planning as akin to quilting- with map upon map overlayed, stitched in place with changing lifestyles and embroidered with political theory.   

It is quite out of fashion, but there is something to be said for the urban planning  that allows for privately held open space. In our tract, the utility easement was developed underground, leaving the finger canyon behind our homes undevelopable and in constant rebellion to revert back to nature. 

What we can't do with our land, because of easements preclude structural development, is the gift of interaction with real wildlife and native vegetation. 

No disrespect to my friends with advance degrees from Harvard, but I wouldn't trade their formal educational accomplishments for the seasons spent learning from this quirky little lot that straddles civilization and wilderness. Working land teaches what is important in life.

Love takes work. While the head is wrapped around the rules- the heart wanders off on a path to be cut through the wilderness.

While I have been blessed to enjoy recreational use of public open spaces and keep up on the latest in horticultural trends;  it is seeing a Robin enjoying the abundant garden that lights my heart.

That Robin has the freedom to fly to any trendy garden in North America, yet it chose my garden for a Sunday stroll. With such visits-the commitment to keep a lawn for birds to pull worms from and maintaining trees and bushes abundant with berries to dine from and  build nests in- the joy dividend is better than any bank deposit yields.

In my lifetime I have met a Prime Minister, two US presidents, several premier captains of businesses- yet I am happier for having the company of  my feathered friends. 

  I confess. When the squall ran through, I had my doubts about the wisdom of wandering off from home in a rain storm. We had such a thoroughly good time- I'm glad we did. It was just the right bridge to cross  back to a full work schedule.  


  1. Oh, I so agree with you on our dear living creatures of Nature. LOVE the pictures of that adorable Robin...And a great picture of you and yours, too!
    I think Nature teaches you so much more than any book-learning.....
    And might I say, that Robin has very Good Taste in Gardens....! Yours is like the finest of Bird Hotels! Great Food, Lovely things to look at, safe and comfy places to settle down in, and Welcoming Humans! What more could a dear sweet Robin ask for?

  2. Good morning, Naomi! I have admired your garden over the Internet and know you are a splendid person because your love of the outdoors is apparent.

  3. Lydia,

    Great photo of you and Ger! It's better than the one I took with my camera. (Still trying to figure out how to deal with them on this new computer!)
    Yes, it was a fun night on Sunday! So glad we all ventured out in that rain storm! It was well worth it if only to hear our Bob sing in three Chinese dialects! LOVE the last one the best! The Taiwanese Fight Song!

    The entire evening was a joy and so nice to visit with you and Gerry!

    Hugs, Trisha

  4. LOVE the robin pictures! GREAT photo of you and Gerry!!! xo

  5. Interesting account of how and what you've learned in your travels through politics. And of course the robin is a star!

  6. You need to participate in a contest for among the finest blogs on the web. I'll advocate this web site!


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