Mon10202014

News

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers

Campaign finance reports show lots of loans, few outliers


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Campaign yard signs are just one expenditure for candidates during election season.

Election finance filings are in, and Los Altos appears to be hosting a few financially lopsided races.

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Schools

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools ea...

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Community

Sports

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles

Spartans run wild(cat) on Eagles


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High running back Austin Johnson goes for a big gain after evading Los Altos High defensive tackle Phil Alameda in Friday’s game. Johnson scored two touchdowns for the Spartans.

After unveiling its wildc...

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Comment

Logan, McClatchie, Peruri for LASD board: Editorial

This is a crucial time for the Los Altos School District. Its leadership faces the challenge of balancing enrollment growth versus maintaining the small, neighborhood schools that make it a very popular district to attend. The district must also adap...

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Special Sections

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern

City's minimum-wage hike earns mixed reviews: Raise to $10.30 an hour meets with approval – and concern


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Tandava Waldon, left, manager of East West Bookstore on Castro Street in Mountain View, works with a customer. Waldon said the recently approved minimum-wage hike will have little impact on his business. “It’s not such a...

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Business

Delay Social Security? An easy way to decide

One of the most heatedly debated questions regarding Social Security is when to start.

You have the option of initiating benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. The longer you wait, the larger the monthly payment you will receive over your...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

SUZANNE MONICA DIMM SPECHT

Suzanne Monica Dimm Specht passed Tuesday, Sept. 9th at the age of 84. Sue was born on April 21, 1930 in Portland, Oregon. After graduating from the University of Oregon in with a degree in Music, Sue taught in a little town called Clatskanie, Oreg...

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Travel

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening

Los Altos resident's visit to North Korea proves enlightening


Courtesy of Sally Brew
North Korea is home to many monuments honoring its “Dear Leaders,” left.

In August, I traveled for 11 days with MIR Corp. to North Korea, a fascinating country that is almost completely cut off from the rest of the world. ...

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Stepping Out

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto

'Trovatore' takes the stage in Palo Alto


Courtesy of José Luis Moscovich
West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” is slated to open Friday night in Palo Alto and run through Oct. 26.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Il Trovatore” (“The Troubadour”) is scheduled to open this weekend...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Until next summer: The Rockey Road

It’s 2 a.m. and I can’t sleep because one of my children will be leaving in two days and I won’t see him for a year. Or so it seems.

In January 2012, I read an email that said, “Marceau is 13, lives in France and is looking to stay as an exchange student.” I thought it would be fun for my son to have someone around who also enjoys sports and is the same age. I spoke with my husband, who agreed, and immediately responded to the email.

Two months later, Marceau and his family were at our front door to meet us. They were a lovely family, and while Marceau was quiet and just learning to speak English, I could tell he was a sweet boy, as described in the email. They returned to France, and via Skype and email we planned for his stay with us in the coming summer.

July 2012 brought warm weather, my son’s birthday and Marceau. The morning Marceau and his parents arrived, I learned that my friend was moving out of the neighborhood, and I knew deep down that the friendship was also moving out of my life. But in some cosmic way, one relationship was being exchanged for another.

I remember Marceau’s mother’s face as she said goodbye to her son. Leaving her child in the home of perfect strangers rendered her excited, but sad and unsure. Just as they were about to walk away, I told her that I would care for him as if he were my own and that he was in good hands. I watched as relief washed over her face, and that was when my attachment to Marceau took root.

We were excited to show Marceau as much as we could while trying not to cram too much American culture down his throat. At first I tried to figure out things he liked to do and eat, but I quickly realized that he just wanted to experience life as we do.

Each day unveiled more of his personality, and each day wove him closer into our family. The morning kisses I delivered to my children were followed by cheek kisses, one side then the next, to Marceau. And each night ended the same way.

We were bonding with this sweet-natured boy. With very few words spoken between us, we could feel the connection that would be undeniably difficult to let go in the coming weeks. But the time came to send Marceau back to France. At the airport, we checked him in and stayed until the flight escort arrived. Walking through security, he looked back often while our hearts grew heavy with sadness for missing him.

We kept in touch with Marceau and his family through Skype and invited him to stay with us again this summer. As the day of his arrival approached, I felt as if my child were coming home.

It’s incredible that people living nearly 6,000 miles apart, who have spent only a few months together, can love each other like family. I didn’t know what to expect when I answered the original email – I took a chance – but I certainly wasn’t expecting to feel this way about another child. It’s not easy for me to let another soul close to mine, but once the bond is made, it’s nearly impossible to break.

Marceau leaves for France in two days. His English has improved, and I know he feels at home with us. I will miss him and his sweet laugh. Several days will follow before we adjust to our home without him, but in my motherly heart, there will always be a spot reserved for Marceau.

It’s 2:50 a.m. I should try to get some sleep.

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