Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

Archive for September 2014

Independent Identity Cornwall’s Charm

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Counties Bordering Plymouth Sound is the port’s promenade called The Hoe that includes a bowling green like that used by Sir Francis Drake before sailing against the Spanish Armada in 1588.

 Story & Photo

 By Pat Neisser

 Mature Life Features

PENZANCE, Cornwall — England’s southwestern tip is the magical territory where Gilbert and Sullivan set their classic fun-poking operetta, The Pirates of Penzance, and the village of Mousehole is celebrated in the tale of Tom Bawcock and his cat, Mowzer. It’s a scene fostered by a citizenry battling and beating the elements that prides itself with its own identity and keeps a wary lookout for doubters. The fishermen are serious about their livelihood and don’t brook interference. But once they’ve finished their tough day, they’re ready to befriend the visitor. The Cornish peninsula is less crowded than better-known areas of the country and its towns hug the sea with an age-old love-hate relationship. I took the train from Southampton to Exeter in County Devon and drove to Penzance after an overnight stay. Cornwall’s and Devon’s history goes back more than 4,000 years but written records reach back to 30 B.C. when seafaring visitors came looking for tin. The Spanish invaded in 1595 but were driven back into the sea, marking the last landing on English soil by invaders. Cornish miners emigrated to California and Colorado to teach silver miners a thing or two and took with them the famous Cornish pasty meat pies. Penzance and its sister villages along the coast are loaded with things to do. Even if you aren’t fond of pilchards (large sardines) don’t miss a visit to the Pilchard Factory and Museum in next-door Newlyn where we were shown how the fish are salt-cured and packed for shipping all over the world. In Newlyn, one of the largest fishing harbors in England with eateries scattered along the beaches, we visited Trinity House National Lighthouse Centre to learn how the famed lighthouse saved so many sailors. A highlight of our visit was the Eden Project, which is housed in acres of environmental domes, each offering a different climate. Actors and scientists interact to explain the place of man and nature in the environmental universe. Next we visited the tiny coastal communities of Fowey, home to Daphne Du Maurier and her famous acting and writing family, and St. Ives, which romance novelist Rosamunde Pilcher calls home and where Barbara Hepworth created many of her magnificent sculptures. St. Ives is a fairy-tale seaport town with lanes that wind up and up. One of its most famous creations is the Tate Gallery St. Ives that  shows modern art from local as well as international artists. Tropical  plants, such as palm trees and cacti, cover this part of England thanks to the nearby Gulf Stream, bringing a California look to the terrain. Finally, it was back to neighboring County Devon and the south-coast seaport of Plymouth. This was Sir Francis Drake’s place of business and the site of the Mayflower’s departure. We stood on the famous steps where the pilgrims boarded their ship. The old town near the water is filled with 17th century memorabilia.

Mature Life Features, Copyright 2004

Written by Cecil Scaglione

September 28, 2014 at 9:36 pm

If you don’t want to get yelled at . . .

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. . . keep an abundant supply of hearing-aid batteries on hand at all times wherever you are.

 — Cecil Scaglione, Mature Life Features

Written by Cecil Scaglione

September 15, 2014 at 10:20 pm

Posted in A Musing

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He Was a Buddy…

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    newspaper1REEVES, Gerry —  Worked for The Union, 1969-1979 as assistant city editor (day), county editor, state government writer, Chula Vista office bureau chief, writing fictitious rainfall figures. Doing a lot of photo and video work, some freelance PR projects. Very active in community theater publicity. Travel a lot. Contact:; 1318 Pine Drive, El Cajon, CA 92020; (619) 447-2582

That’s how he described himself in the San Diego Union-Tribune alumni directory. He hired on a year before I did and left a year before I did.
We got to know each other covering the South Bay and each other’s back for a few years. When he moved downtown, he would bug me about moving there but we always agreed that the absence of editorial-room politics made the bureaus exceedingly attractive. It was his nudge to City Editor Walt MacArthur that got me to join the financial department with Don Bauder, Denise Carabet, Jim Mitchell, Helen Call and Mary Russell. Charlie Ross and Fred Muir came later. That hiatus taught me to embark on a public relations career to finance my retirement.
Gerry left the Union to become an editor in Tucson and then moved into public relations in Los Angeles before returning to San Diego to manage PR matters at Cubic Corp. Again, he was a booster. I was hired as a contractor and, as well as doing other jobs that cropped up with regularity, I was editor of the company’s in-house monthly magazine for several years. This contributed to the financial health of my PR agency — and my retirement.
We had breakfast/lunch a couple or three times a year. He suffered some severe medical problems over the years. Among them were lung cancer that required surgery, diabetes, and the last time we talked he was losing weight at an alarming rate and didn’t know what was causing it. He had a doctor’s appointment the following week to discuss it.
He didn’t spend much time talking about all that. He liked to expound the benefits of his latest toy — a camera or computer or whatever — and the latest developments with the acting troupe he was working with. We always talked about “the good old days and the good guys” and caught each other up on names and faces we had kept up with. Sometimes we’d wonder how politicians keep getting stupider and stupider.
We were due to nudge one another to set a date for our pre-Christmas brunch. But he died last Wednesday (Aug. 27) in San Diego’s VA Hospital.

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Written by Cecil Scaglione

September 2, 2014 at 7:28 am