July 13, 1969: That Iconic Photo

Dad took the photo of Mom on Pismo Beach 50 years ago. It is my favorite and a family treasure. It captures what Mom must have been feeling after four weeks in the car with three boys and a tent. When I think about her looking at Dad behind his camera, she was definitely having a real moment: funny, exasperated, resigned, authentic. And, of course, she’s beautiful!

Every Christmas Eve almost ’til his passing, Dad would put together a slide show, usually four or five carousels full of his latest photos and the classics. When this one hit the screen — which it did every single year — the room would light up. Oohs and aahs and hoots and whistles. Even now, it lights up my day

More normal—cold. Rented a spot at the deluxe campground and they swam in the pool and we all took showers. Jim and I walked up the beach.

Marge Binder, July 13, 1969

July 12, 1969: “It never rains in Southern California…”

Clamming, Pismo style. I guess it all can’t be surf ‘n’ sun.

Maw still hums this song every now and again. The data agrees (see below), at least for July. We learned a very different lesson back in ’69.

Speaking with Maw a few weeks ago she recalled this day in detail. I added up all of the challenges: thunderstorms, heat, tent camping, laundry, more rain, power outage with soaked clothes. That must have been the worst! Mom was like, meh.

Actually had thunder and rain – then a fairly hot day. Went to San Luis Obispo to buy Tim a new rod. They swam. Another shower in the evening and the power went out just as I was finishing the laundry.

Marge Binder, July 12, 1969