Stanford was quite a nice little place when my mother moved there: a dusty little Victorian Village with a few houses huddled around a village green. Then it became famous.
I think it became famous for being pretty and quiet and out of the way, and possibly for having ‘atmosphere’. Of course, as soon as it became famous for being out of the way etc, it suddenly became very much in the way. Burned-out yuppies from every part of the country purchased land and built holiday houses. The village became a construction site. I knew the rot was terminal when they tarred the roads and put in street lights.
When a village this size suddenly becomes a tourist destination, the next step is the de-usefulization of the main street. This culminates in a situation where the tiny business district contains three antique shops that sell hideously expensive bric-a-brac, no less than five restaurants that change hands like hot potatoes, an art gallery and a tourist information center.
The only useful shops left are a general dealers in the old style, a filling station with convenience store, a greasy take-away foods and a library. Its not much use when you’re looking for chicken to serve up to an invalid – you can, however, purchase the ailing patient a painting or an antique brass whatnot.
The old, cheerfully doggy set with their scuffed walking shoes and shaggy sweaters have given way to the sort of 4x4 drivers who need tarred roads (which is probably why they tarred the things in the first place- for the 4x4’s) and who complain about everything from dogs (they bark, you know) to kid’s parties (a mad debauch at lunch time on a Saturday, for shame!).
I don’t like this town much any more, really.
Today’s pics: Stanford, of course. At least the mountains are still magnificent.