Thu05052016

News

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Gregory Helfrich

Updated 11:28 a.m.:

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 R...

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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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Once upon a time: On the hunt for magic


The phrase “Once upon a time” is magical in more ways than we could ever imagine, and one that as adults we are far too eager to abandon. It takes us beyond our limited world of possibility and transports us into a grander spectacle of potential outcomes.

In storytelling, “Once upon a time” focuses on a past event (long ago and far away) that sends the message that something magical happened “before,” and to a child’s mind, it implies subconsciously that it could happen again. A child’s mind makes that leap naturally and effortlessly. But sadly, over time, our adult minds become programmed with walls, barriers and filters that trap us in a world of logic that relegates unlimited potential to the realm of nonsense.

Why is potential beyond our wildest dreams good enough (and indeed desirable!) for our children but not good enough for us? Magic happens all the time, all around us – but we make it small by calling it something else, like “good luck,” “fate” or, occasionally, a “miracle.”

We are all master storytellers, whether we realize it or not. We tell ourselves stories all the time. It is how we define and manage our universe, for better or for worse. When we are living in the “worst” scenario, it is not uncommon to retreat into someone else’s “better” story via movies, TV and, in days gone by more so than now, books.

We are always on the hunt for magic: sometimes in science fiction and other times perhaps in romance or mystery. There is even magic to be found in cookbooks and hobby books that create pictures in our heads of what “could be.”

There is a wonderful movie out now based on the best-seller “The Book Thief” (Knopf, 2006) by Markus Zusak. While it is set during the Holocaust, the focus is not political – it’s on how a young girl survived and thrived by reading books for her own enjoyment and out loud to others. The words on the pages magically transported them from their suffering to a better place and time for a while, and made their conditions bearable.

I would like to suggest a new trend in storytelling: Let’s change “Once upon a time” to “It happened once before and could happen again,” thereby embracing the magic of potential outcomes that defy logic and dance seamlessly between past and present. Why should children have all the fun? And why would we wish more for them than we wish for ourselves?

I am going to start right now searching for some fairy dust that can make me fly. I’m just saying, it may be an airplane ticket instead of gold residue, but I still get to fly – and how great is that?

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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