Village Matters: Down to simple questions

By Ann Christoph.

Life lessons seem to be highlighted at every turn.

Last weekend I saw the real faces from our high school yearbook, some I hadn’t seen in 50 years. Yes, it was Alfredo’s 50th high school reunion, and since I was a year behind at the same school, I at one time knew all of the 35 people in his class.  When first walking into the party I wasn’t sure who was a spouse that I would not be expected to know, and who was a former schoolmate who I should certainly recognize. Then as we talked, the voices were recognizable, and at last I could see the familiar faces again, coming through the transformations of age.

Getting down to the people within and crossing the barriers of 50 years of separate goings on in each of our lives was more difficult. But we all made valiant attempts at it.

Still the overriding impression left with me was how little it mattered what each of us had done all these years. What was there to say?  The struggles, the arguments, the heart-wrenching decisions, have all floated by in 50 years of life currents. What matters is how well we’ve used our time and what we’ve left behind, in memories of love given and gifts of knowledge and substance to the next generation.

Coming back and stepping into the fury of election campaigning, it’s saddening that the quarreling continues, when there is so much good still to be done with all that energy.

Measure CC has done a good thing. We have unanimity on the value of open space.  There’s disagreement on who supported it when, but all now agree it’s good for Laguna. Now we just have to decide these simple questions:

Do we want to increase our permanent open space by 20% or do we want to let it dwindle away parcel by parcel over time? Is it worth $10 a month to preserve those lands in open space?

Take a look at the kids talking on this video and you will have your answer to these questions.

To me it’s worth $10 a month to know that as a community we have a vision, a higher priority, and that we will save a living, continuous open space, something of lasting value for us and future generations.

There’s no deception here. Measure CC is what it is represented to be, a way to carry on and complete the greenbelt Jim Dilley envisioned in 1968.  He left a gift of knowledge and substance and so can we.


A former Laguna Beach mayor, Ann Christoph works as a landscape architect and advocate for Measure CC.

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