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News

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Gregory Helfrich

Santa Clara Sheriff’s detectives have arrested a Los Altos Hills man they suspect repeatedly molested a child decades ago.

Detectives arrested Gregory Helfrich, 54, on a warrant at his Old Page Mill Road home April 27 and...

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Schools

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students


Courtesy of Jessica Harell
Blach Intermediate School seventh-grader Paris Harrell, who loves science and animals, recently received a scholarship from the local branch of the AAUW to attend Tech Trek camp.

It’s not every day that a junior hig...

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Community

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner


Federici

Longtime Los Altos resident Mario Federici, who turned 98 Feb. 24, is a man of many languages. He shared his knowledge with thousands of students during his long career as a teacher.

Federici was born and raised in Italy, where he stud...

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Comment

Attend an event, get involved, have fun: Editorial

You don’t have to run for city council to get involved in the community. Sometimes it can be as simple as attending a Los Altos event. You’ll have plenty of opportunities, as the May and June calendars are bustling with activity.

The Dow...

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Special Sections

Racing around Monterey

Racing around Monterey


Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The easy handling of the VW Golf R, above, makes for an ideal ride along the Big Sur coast.

 

When automotive journalists are asked to list their favorite places in the world to drive, Monterey alway...

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Business

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations


Courtesy of Eureka
Eureka, a new restaurant in downtown Mountain View, highlights local craft beer and whiskeys on a menu of food spanning from sea to farm.

Craft beer and fancy whiskeys headline the menu at Eureka, the new restaurant that opene...

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People

Stepping Out

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'


Courtesy of Palo Alto Players
The Baker’s Wife, left, and Cinderella’s erstwhile Prince stand out in the Palo Alto Players production of “Into the Woods.”

Little Red Riding Hood sets forth at the outset of “Into the...

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Spiritual Life

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International


Courtesy of Los ALtos United Methodist Church
Hidden Villa will bring some of its farm animals to Los Altos United Methodist Church Sunday to support the nonprofit Heifer International.

Los Altos United Methodist Church is scheduled to salute th...

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Lessons in attending the perfect book club


I recently attended a book club meeting of five women. We were reviewing Dan Brown’s “Inferno” (Doubleday, 2013). Without spoiling the plot, I will tell you only that the crux is population control.

I approached the subject matter with interest but no particular personal agenda – or so I thought. I was very surprised at how quickly the topic became very personal among our members – and I confess, too, how when confronted with other people’s adamant opinions, I quickly spiraled into defending an opinion I didn’t even know I had until I was challenged. (“Who is this person?” I said to myself about myself!)

It can be difficult to find the perfect book club. If the group is on the small side, controversy can often become intense and confrontational (if not well managed by the discussion leader).

In larger groups, we may not feel invested enough in what others express simply because we don’t know them very well, and therefore don’t care deeply about their opinions.

Clubs of all sorts can be a great source of self-awareness if we are brave enough to participate. Of course, there is no perfect club. We come together to learn, share and grow in ways that we cannot do on our own.

There can be great pleasure in the give-and-take of thoughts and opinions. It’s an old saying that God in his wisdom gave us two ears and only one mouth for a good reason: We should listen more than we speak and respect the layers of human experience that make us unique as individuals and interesting as a group.

“Perfect,” then, takes on a new meaning. A perfect book club is a place to share a story written by someone else and, in that process, learn more about our own stories – that personal internal dialogue that can give us clues as to why we are the way we are. Sometimes, if we listen closely, we may hear something we don’t like, or no longer agree with. Then we get to experience the rush of power that is truly ours and ours alone: the power to change our minds for the better.

So, the next time you read a book, remember to “read” yourself as you think about the book and talk about it with your club or friends. Silently question your own thoughts and opinions – and if you don’t agree with them anymore, then do a quick rewrite on yourself. We are, after all, the authors of our own lives.

I’m just saying ... after you figure out what you think and feel, don’t read too much into what others think. They are just showing you their stories, too. No book review required.

Sharon Lennox-Infante is a Certified Life Coach who lives and works in Los Altos. For more

information, visit sharonlennox.com.

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