Santa Catalina Island, part 2


Continuing my story from yesterday, Brian & I spent our last day inland. A thirty-minute stroll from Avalon City center is the Wrigley Memorial & Botanical Gardens. The memorial honors the memory of William Wrigley Jr., the chewing gum giant. At the base of the memorial is a lovely botanical garden


The garden was first established in 1935 and was the brain child of Mrs. Wrigley’s wife, Ada. It was intended to be a desert plant collection to showcase species from every corner of the earth.


In 1969 the garden was expanded and revitalized with new plants and with a new attitude…the garden now places a special emphasis on California island endemic plants.


Many of these plants are extremely rare, and some are on the Endangered Species list.



The memorial itself is amazing. Completed in 1934, it was designed by the Chicago architecture firm Bennett, Parsons and Frost. The goal in building the structure was to use as much Catalina materials as possible.


Quarried Catalina stones can be seen in the reinforced concrete construction.


Stairs and doors and “window” openings beckon



The tile used throughout came from the Catalina Pottery plant, which was in operation from 1927 to 1937.




Though William Wrigley Jr. was interred here for a short time, he is now buried in Pasadena. The original dedication plaque remains.


But I have to say that with all this lovely architecture, the one element that intrigued me the most were these bronze doors. They seem to be a metaphor for the way I’ve been feeling over the past several months. I feel like I’m at a doorway in my life


Not sure if “my” doorway will lead up or out


I just know that eventually I will need to pass through.


This feeling and these thoughts caused me to retreat into a self-imposed isolation of sorts. I backed away from my usual Social Media participation, stuck to the house, and have been doing quite a lot of journaling. It has been awhile since I’ve been alone with myself and it has felt good. I need to do this more regularly.

Well, that’s it for me. If you’ve ever thought you might like to visit Santa Catalina Island, I would highly recommend it.

Thanks so much for stopping by.


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About Carol

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5 Responses to Santa Catalina Island, part 2

  1. Beverly says:

    Oh Carol…each time I see you post something about your visit…the 1958 song “26 Miles” by the Four Preps, pops into my head…”the Island of romance”!! It was one of my favorite songs, so it is so fun to actually see photos of your trip there. It’s beautiful. I couldn’t agree more about taking time to be quiet and off of SM…it’s a strain for me. Enjoy your special time, very much! It’s most important. Thanks for sharing your lovely trip!! Take care of YOU!! Cheers!! xx

    26 Miles (Santa Catalina) Lyrics:

    26 miles across the sea
    Santa Catalina is a-waitin’ for me
    Santa Catalina, the island of romance
    Romance, romance, romance

    Water all around it everywhere
    Tropical trees and the salty air
    But for me the thing that’s a-waitin’ there

    It seems so distant, 26 miles away
    Restin’ in the water serene
    I’d work for anyone, even the Navy
    Who would float me to my island dream

    26 miles, so near yet far
    I’d swim with just some water-wings and my guitar
    I could leave the wings but I’ll need the guitar
    For romance, romance, romance, romance

    26 miles across the sea
    Santa Catalina is a-waitin’ for me
    Santa Catalina, the island of romance

    A tropical heaven out in the ocean
    Covered with trees and girls
    If I have to swim, I’ll do it forever
    Till I’m gazin’ on those island pearls

    Forty kilometers in a leaky old boat
    Any old thing that’ll stay afloat
    When we arrive we’ll all promote romance
    Romance, romance, romance

    26 miles across the sea
    Santa Catalina is a-waitin’ for me
    Santa Catalina, the island of romance
    Romance, romance, romance

    26 miles across the sea
    Santa Catalina is a-waitin’ for me
    Santa Catalina, the island of romance

  2. Jana Vargas says:

    Thank you again for sharing your art and your thoughts – I too love doorways- When I am inspired by a doorway or opening,I am reminded of the term bardo – a transitional state described many ways, but the foremost of which I recall as an opening, an opportunity during which further enlightenment is possible. Clearly, this doorway beckoned to you and I can see why, it is lovely, but its metaphoric meaning was calling to you as well – Blessing to you in your growth and passages dear friend- Jana

  3. Looks European in CA and some of the nature looks familiar for sure. You even got the familiar raindrops that you know so well. Yep on the isolation of sorts, we all need to refuel from time to time. Have a sweet Friday.

  4. Carol Orbeck says:

    Enjoyed visiting Catalina again. Thank you. As for the doors, I hope all the doors you go through lead to love and joy.

  5. León says:

    I am feeling the need for a break from social media too, by which I mean Facebook and Instagram, mostly. (Blogs are a different animal to me.) I too have been journaling more. I feel the weight of things that need to be done. And I’m feeling the need for an escape, however brief. I’ve enjoyed visiting Catalina with you! Now I need to find a “Catalina” of my own.

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