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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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Giving thanks lifts the mind and body over Himalayan pass

My wife and I had already purchased our tickets to Nepal before grasping entirely what we’d committed to: an 18-day trek through the Himalayas including an ascent up Thorung La – at 5,416 meters (17,769 feet), one of the world’s highest mountain passes.

Sure, we had experience hiking to the top of some pretty big hills. But even our one-day trot to the top of California’s Mount Whitney, the tallest peak in the lower 48, couldn’t compare to what was in store for us.

The first few days of the trek were about as carefree as they come as our small group of adventurers (seven clients, seven porters and two guides) slowly but surely made its way through the balmy jungles, alpine forests and hillside rice paddies of the Marsyangdi River Valley. However, the closer we came to Thorung La, the more aware I was of the potential health risks involved with high-altitude trekking.

I’m sure this had less to do with my physical environment than it did the surrounding mental atmosphere – an atmosphere clouded by the concerns of so many others traveling in this region who, like me, were finding themselves in a situation practically guaranteed to push us, willingly or not, beyond our presumed limits.

Mind you, this wasn’t because of any fearmongering on the part of our Nepali guides and porters. In fact, quite the opposite. Rarely have I found myself surrounded by such supportive individuals whose constant and sincere expectation of good provided a much-needed and much-appreciated boost of energy. Not once did I hear any of them express even the slightest doubt about our collective abilities to make it over the pass.

Nevertheless, in the days leading up to our big climb, I began to experience some mild symptoms of altitude sickness.

By the time the big day arrived (morning temperature: between 0 and 10 F), I was feeling considerable pain in my lower neck, though nothing serious enough to warrant postponing our departure. However, I did take some time to consciously let go of any fears I’d been harboring about the day ahead, a process made much easier thanks to a conversation I had with my wife.

We discovered that the night before, we’d both been thinking specifically about the things we appreciated about each member of our little climbing clan: qualities of thought, unique talents and so on. And then it hit me – I realized that it wasn’t just the expectation of good, but also the conscious gratitude for the good we’d already experienced that was making me feel a lot better. In fact, well before we reached the summit, I felt absolutely no pain and was walking at a surprisingly quick pace.

I suppose there are many ways to explain my recovery. Some might call it positive thinking or just plain luck. As I see it, though, it was the natural result of prayer, a word that describes – at least in this instance – a conscious effort to identify myself and others with the physically transformative presence of God-given good.

For me, prayer isn’t so much an appeal to God to do something out of the ordinary (“Please make me feel better despite this crazy situation I’ve gotten myself into”), but the recognition of what God has already done and continues to do for all of us.

Not only has this kind of gratitude-based approach to health care proved to improve our outlook, but it improves our bodies as well – in a variety of ways and, apparently, at all elevations.

Eric Nelson’s columns on the link between consciousness and health appear weekly in a number of local and national online publications. He serves as media and legislative spokesman for Christian Science in Northern California. This article originally appeared on Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com and is used with permission. For more information, visit norcalcs.org.

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