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April 2, 2014     The Julian News
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April 2, 2014. Tattered Tidbits No. 37 The Julian News 7 Funny Names, part 1 Our Spanish place names often depended on the caprices of fate or the wry wacky humor of soldiers. Captain Vizcaino happened to step ashore on November 12, the name day of the saint Diego of Alcal de Henares. That's an Arabic name for a castle. In pleasant Alcal on the Henares River near Madrid's airport, Diego is overshadowed by favorite son Cervantes, who had more pizazz. You can see the neglected Diego minus some chopped- off parts, but only on his name day. For consolation, a nice cloistered nun passed me some relics through a revolving lazy susan door. I never saw her. It will surprise no one that the Spanish king's teenage son used to sleep all day and carouse all night. Being told to cool it, he started to sneak out in the dark, fell on stone stairs, and bashed his head. After that, he was in bed both day and night. Court physicians of great wisdom finally slid the corpse of San Diego under the covers of the princely bed. It was their only hope. Miraculously, the young prince sprang out Of the bed and proclaimed himself well and truly cured. That was hailed as the best miracle of Diego's career. In a report to the Viceroy Bucareli, Governor Pere Fages explained how his soldiers had "the custom of giving names agreeing with the circumstances.., in our discovery." They did not often give saintly names. Fages was our first back country explorer. Violent tremors at their campsiie on the Santa Ana River caused them to name it Jesus de los Temblores. rages wrote that every Indian village had 2 or 3 highly esteemed "joyas," "men in the dress and character of women." He found many men "addicted to... sinning against nature." Gay rights are nothing new in California. La Jolla is unlikely to use this in its tourist publicity, being content to derive its name from the word "jewel." Viejas [old women] was likely named by Fages while hunting down deserters. Local lore says he found mainly old women at Matarawa village (flatland house). We wodld expect semi- nomadic tribes to leave the aged at home. I would guess that a priest may have first visited Santa Ysabel on a July fourth, that being her name day. This Franciscan was a justly famed princess of Arag6n, who became "The Holy Queen of Portugal." Down the road, Witch Creek and Ballena [Whale] are translations of Indian names. One morning my co-workers in Sweden surprised me at coffee break to celebrate my own name day. When I objected that there was no name day for"Albert," one chap handed me a foamy piece of cake and said, "True...but today is Simon day." Europeans will grasp any pathetic excuse for a celebration. San Felipe was named by Catalan nobleman Pere Fages but that name applied narrowly to present Vallecito. The whole drainage of present San Felipe valley, Banner Canyon and Carrizo was shown as San Sebastian Valley on a 1783 map. This name was also used for a strategic spring and marsh now called Harper's Well, southwest of Salton Sea, and more desolate now. The valley is visible from "El Registro", a lookout at Laguna. As part of a famous migration north to San Francisco Bay, with families and cattle, Captain de Anza engaged a guide called Sebastian Tarabal, also known as "El Peregrino" (the wanderer). He was definitely no saint. Sebastian had come north to help establish mission San Gabriel. Fed up with mission discipline, he, his wife and a relative set out on the open Sonora Trail to the Camino del Diablo. Only he survived the sand hills near Yuma Crossing. That gave this mission deserter the expertise and grit Anza needed. In gratitude, Anza named the village and spring for his lifesaving guide, perhaps adding the "San" with a touch of irony. In 1769, by the Santa Barbara Channel, soldiers found Chumash Indians building pine plank boats big enough for ten men. They used tar seeps at the foggy beach to caulk the seams. This was cutting-edge flintstone technology. Other tribes only used crude soggy reed rafts. The Catalan volunteers called the village Carpinteria (carpentry shop). That name endures, but the 32 Indian huts have morphed upscale. You can almost hear the chuckles of the Catalan volunteers who had seen grand tall ships as they embarked at C diz in Andalucia. Padre Crespi did not join in their soldierly silliness. He insisted on naming the place San Roque. That didn't stick. For the first time since leaving Arroyo de San Diego (Mission by Albert Simonson Valley), the 1769 expedition could follow a beach trail. They killed a sea gull and named the place La Gaviota in honor of that immortal yet tasty seagull. The name now applies to a state park and a mountain pass where they again turned inland - to a rougher, less populated area. From Punta Concepcibn, 'bearings were taken by Engineer Costans6 on the three big channel islands. Padre Crespi checked him with a sextant. They were camped at the Village of the Lame Chief (Cojo). That name stuck. Crespi was not trying hard to convert Indians on this expedition. Some Indians were asked to kiss the crucifix, but could not quite make themselves do it. Good thing. 'With our 20/20 hindsight, that must have saved them from infectious European diseases. North of Cadsbad, Las Pulgas (the fleas) became especially noteworthy in the whole fleabitten area. At many villages, chiefs would harangue the expedition with tiresome speeches in their own language. Emphatic delivery and vigorous gestures did not help much in getting the message across. Soldiers often had to put stop to the filibusters. That's what we need in Congress. Closer to Morro Bay is a valley and state reserve called Los Osos (the bears). There, the soldiers and Indians were starving, later in 1772. rages organized a grizzly hunt to kill and eat about 30 bears. The local Indians used to kidnap grizzly cubs, but their mothers had ways of getting even. rages with his musket became a hero to those Indians who had no defenses against grownup grizzlies with grudges. Soldiers called him "L'Os" (the bear, in Catalan). On the first trip, a cub was presented as a gift to the soldiers which they politely declined. Big Momma might have been sniffing around. The promontory there is called II 24 Hour Emergency Service Ben Sulser, D strict Manager Join the Club for Weekly MatchPlay, Restaurant Rewards & Monthly Giveaways 52702 Highway 371 in Anza CahuillaCasino,com (888) 371-ANZA 02014 Cahuilla Casino. Must be 21 or older to play. Gambling a pioblem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. llllllllllllll Join Club Cahuilla for $10 MatchPlay and a F BURGER!* *$10 play required to achieve rewards. Must be 21 or older and have valid photo ID to redeem. New Club Cahuilla membership signup required at time of redemption; coupon valid for up to 4 individuals, once per person per Club Cahuilla player account. NO CASH VALUE; not valid for use toward purchase of alcohol, gratuity, or cash back. Valid for burger or substitute food Item up to $10 value. Coupon expires 4/30/14. Must be 21 or older to play. CahuiUa Casino supports responsible gaming. Gambling a problem? 1-800-GAMBLER, 52702 Highway 371 Anza, CA 92539 (888) 371-ANZA cahuillacasino.com Point Buchon, slang for Big Gulp. The local chief had an iodine- deticiency goiter which distended his mouth and throat. Those soldiers had a sardonic sense of humor, and Fages let them have their fun and so that unkind name endures. Tourists think it's a classy French name, like maybe a fine wine. Padre Crespi, with a more solemn agenda, named the place San Ladislao. That didn't stick- way too hard to remember, and too Hungarian besides. Other places were named for good Indian dancers or topography. Your first hope of water this side of Yuma Crossing was a carrion-soaked water hole named Alamo Mocho for its severely amputated cottonwood tree. The next water hole was not as good, unless you needed a potent laxative. Los Angeles River gets its name from Padre Crespi, who held mass there on the jubilee of Nuestra Sefiora La Reina de Los Angeles de Porciencula. A series of violent earthquakes broke loose immediately, an ominous sign of future unpleasantnesses. Porci0ncula was a leftover little parcel in the hometown of Saint Francis, which is often struck by quakes. Down the hill from his pilgrimage church in Assisi, you can see the remains of his counterpart Santa Clara. She ran away from her parents' palace and stood up her rich- boy fianc6 to meet up secretly with Francis at the Porci0ncula chapel. This sounds steamy, but they each established holy orders to promote charity over wealth. They were inspiration to our missionaries. Morro Rock was and is a grand, dark, looming lava plug which rises from the surf, "a gunshot from the shore." Miguel de Costansb was in camp on the shore and described it as a round head. For that Catalan engineer and all Iberians, the Moors (moros) were ancestral enemies from the eighth century and the crusades. (To Be Continued) Team Gold Winners continued from page 1 Mountain County Park. The video competition connected real-life, positive camping or park experiences of kids and their families and friends partaking in an outdoor activity at any one of San Diego County Parks and Recreation Facilities. As a class project, this competition was aligned with the state of California education academic standards for English Language Arts. The content standards are designed to encourage the highest achievement of every student while encouraging outdoor activity. As a first place winner in his age bracket Ethan received the following: $1000 cash prize donated by the San Diego County Parks Society with $500 going to the youth that made the video, and $500 going to their class for educational supplies or class equipment;(Ethan has already committed to donating his share to the bike team) The winners will receive two free nights of group camping at a County of San Diego campground; Video will be featured on the County online and television mediums such as the County Television Network, You Tube, County News Center, Facebook, Twitter, and the winning classwill be featured in all County media and public relations materials; Video may be shown at the annual Movies in the Park series. L t f l