|Gate to the property where Ray Bradbury once lived.|
|View of the house from the front gate|
Ray Bradbury, American author and screen-writer, wrote many of his greatest works in the home that once stood on this site. To pay homage to his life and spirit, the design of this gate incorporates his words.
“Living at risk is jumping off a cliff and building your wings on the way down.”
"I never ask anyone else's opinion. They don't count."
"Don't think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity."
“Stuff you eyes with wonder,” he said, “live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds.”
"Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said."
Then, as I looked closely, I could see the words embedded in the gate design. While individual words and letters are discernible, it is a bit hard to distinguish the whole quotes among the surrounding metal. Even so, the fact that they are there to connect us with Ray Bradbury and his work means he is still part of our neighborhood.
After finding the sign, I wanted to read Ray Bradbury’s books again. When I went to the Los Angeles Public Library website I discovered that many of his books are available to borrow as digital copies. I checked out Dandelion Wine (1957), his semi-autobiographical book about his growing up years in Waukegan, Illinois (renamed Green Town in the book) and downloaded it to my computer. As I have been reading the stories–about making dandelion wine, the pleasure of fresh cut grass in the summer, his elderly neighbors and their “Green Machine”, and more–they bring back memories of childhood visits to my grandparents' house in Kenosha, Wisconsin, a similar midwestern town just up the road from Waukegan. While the time period of Bradbury’s stories about Green Town is nearly a century ago, the essential human qualities of the characters are universal.
|A side gate to the property is also embedded with Ray Bradbury's words. Behind it is a glimpse into the densely planted garden surrounding the house.|
(Republished from my travel blog The Intrepid Tourist 5/4/20.)