The gates opened at 6 pm. Guests arrived as early as 5:30 pm. Parking is a challenge at the HML, but so many wanted to come to support the guest of honor, Don Case, and his family. So, we came early, got good spots to park, and waited, chatting among ourselves.
When the gates opened, the lights were already twinkling, even though it was not yet dark. The line wound down the lighted path, where our names were either checked off, or donations made, and we were offered a copy of a water color painted by Don Case of the grassy field and redwoods which surround the HML.
The buffet, provided by the Big Sur Bakery and SLOW Foods Buffet, led by event orgainizer Mike Gilson, CPOA, provided wonderful food for our enjoyment.
Also of CPOA, Jeannie Ford’s children, Emily and Joe performed beautifully on violin and cello for the attendees.
Magnus Toren, curator of the HML, met and greeted all, as well as oversaw the venue and its preparation.
The number of attendees was astounding, and gratefully appreciated by Don and his family. It was so wonderful to see so many Big Surians in attendance, giving hope to Don and his family that replacement of his long-time home was truly a reality.
One of Don’s old friends came down from Sonoma, probably more old friends, but this gentleman I spoke with at dinner. He helped raise the roof on the original house 40 years ago.
I did not stay for the showing of Food, Inc. as it was dark and the road home requires significant attention, particularly as it was foggy, and I had a long way to go. Driving slowly to fit the conditions, I marveled at the community of which I have become a part. The love, joy, and sharing which permeated this gathering warmed me all the way down the coast.
Don Case, you are well and truly loved, my friend.
And to bring this post to a close, a few words from Joyce Duffy: “I cannot put into words the tremendous jolt of love energy that we all got from last night.
Today when I left the Case home, Neva was resting in a lounge chair on the slab of the old house … Josh and Don were at a table in front of the old hearth trying to teach Oceana and Kiana to play dominoes … there is lightheartedness and peace and relaxation and a for-sure-now knowing that someday there will be a house around surrounding the family. We are all a bit speechless in reaction to the overwhelming shower of love and help.”