This essay, written by Vern Gersh, appears in the 2018 Mono Lake Calendar.
“Never give up for that is the time and place that the tide will turn.” —Harriet Beecher Stowe
Forty years ago, in the Eastern Sierra, the tide was running. Like all tides it ran in one direction. Its flow must have seemed inexorable as the waters of life were sucked away.
Shakespeare referred to living in “the tide of times.” The tide that has been running strongest in my life is the stream of change. When I was born in 1955 there were half as many humans on the planet. Nothing human-made orbited the earth. There were fewer than 600 pizza parlors in the entire United States. The majority of Americans shared their phone line with a neighbor. You would dial that phone and were tethered to it with a cord. There was one Mexican restaurant in the city of half a million Americans where I was born.
Forty years ago, when the Mono Lake Committee was born (more…)