Le Grand Fromage looks at the views

Here's Freestone... Maybe I see it a little different than some just drivin' by, thinking it's darn pretty... I hear the train going through.
There's Indians walking quietly through the fog drifting over the valley and Salmon Creek. There's hooligans and shenanigans played out in endless stories, a bunch still un-ravelling.



I'm going to use this as a place to rant against whatever...
You know last April I got a parking ticket for being in a Frieght loading zone for just under 10 minutes at The County Buildings while I paid property taxes...
I figured that to me, it was a darn heavy load of frieght I was delivering to them...
They didn't really agree ...

"The Friends of The Old Trees" won in Court...
Not Bad! The CDF(forestry) was hot to beat them so more trees could get whacked. Paul Carrol, thier Attorney, just let the facts and common sense prevail. Sometimes in an arguement ya just have to make the obvious available...

The Ocean Song story is still pretty tough...
Raul, who more or less is dictating the negotiations wants 1.25 million... An Appraiser is coming in but the point is...
where'd the money go that EcoCorps billed to The Hierloom Trust? The Hierloom Trust was given $575,000 worth of land in the original deal! That just isn't showing up in these dealings... Sure a bunch of improvements were made, but how much money was wasted? Why should the Hierloom Trust side foot ALL the billls and EcoCorps none?
Join Ocean Song 2001 to help save the Land..., vision and mission and resurrect a great Environmental Education Center.

The O'Reilly Development is going before LAFCO June 5th!The jerks at LAFCO ...( Are you listening Tim Smith??? You know what HE DID ,he said how lousy a job Sebastopol did of planning, THEN he went and voted for it!) approved what they very specifically said was "not just BAD planning, but planning by convenience! Planning that went against common sense , and not to come back to LAFCO again in this fashion... Then they voted 4-3 in favor of the horrendous traffic, planning and land-use mess! Tim O'Reilly was very revealing in saying Sebastopol had guided him toward that site! Even though light industrial growth was set on paper, COLOR-CODED to take place on the south side of Town! The City was pushing a bad site on Tim from the beginning! How much extra money did he have to spend following the screwed-up direction of The City of Sebastopol! Be there to support the vote to deny the Big change in Sebastopol!
The important thing for me is that The Sebastopol City Council isn't the proper forum to review the application.
It demands a more regional consideration. I do my best to stay away from Sebastopol, but I go through the intersection slated for O'Reilly almost every day.
Take it to a different court!

I sat a spell with Eric just the other morning on the front porch of The Freestone Store.
We got to talking...
It's interesting how in the 70's we were all terrified of the threatening "Santa Clara Countyization" of Western Sonoma County. The exploding housing market was the economic driving force of the time.
We were gung-ho promoting the historic agricultural heritage and how that could save open space from endless un-afordable housing tracts.
Well the housing market slumped and the wine biz went sky-high along with grape tonnage prices and obviously land prices for growing.
Apple orchards were ripped up, sold for firewood or yuppie Salmon Bar-bee-que chips and the land ripped three feet deep by D-6 Cats, covered with plastic like a suburban house couch, then earth-fumigated with methyl bromide.
So... We got what we asked for...


©copyright Bill Wheeler 1996

The whole damn valley is up for grabs!!!
John McNulty bought The Crenna Ranch for 1.45 million in a probate over-bid sale... Nobody knows yet what he intends to do...

Now the property to the south of Freestone is in escrow waiting for a use permit. They want to make the land between Tony's hillside and Raz' on the other look like it was decorated by the same folks who wrap suburban couches in industrial strength plastic! Hold on!... They pulled out of the deal! Keep your lances dry and the powder sharpened though... Ya know there's another windmill comin' at us from that direction, sooner or later, Sancho...

Jeez... Tom Golden at The Wishing Well Nursery is Christo's U.S. Manager, What's HE gonna think?

I'm gonna write Jess Jackson and ask him to make a model organic vineyard so all these idiots wanting an acre of grapes on thier new little ranchette-vinyettes ( keep an eye open, I've got a story somewhere about this...
This whole dadburned freestone.com is filled to the treetops with vignettes, here's a picture of one of the best at streamin' vignettes, Neal Cassady. He burnt most all of his writings one mis-directed day )
don't go chasing after Dutton Ranch Management to plant goofball grapes for absurd micro-climates that can only grow by using a zillion chemicals that are a bunch more toxic than the steer-shit that's a by-product of what's happenin' on the land now!

Over to The Rural Alliance
Spring Newsletter story about Freestone...

Here's a nice shot of Occidental from the north to south
My Post Office, run by dear Ms. Suzanne is to the center/right.
Thanks to The Union Hotel!
Click n'go ( but come back!)...


Send a note

or head to The Freestone Hotel Registration so everybody can read what's on your mind!

Take a look at this map...
Freestone is smack dab in the center... Bohemian Hwy cuts west from Bodega Hwy. The Wishing Well Nursery, used to be Hind's Hotel, is the first squiggle in the road. Then The Store, then ya turn left or you end up in Joe Negri's Horse pasture.




Scene around the abode...
Living on a hill, looking out over a valley that flows into the Pacific, the indoors environs sometimes suffers from a lack of attention. Ah-hem... But Art and good food make thr transition as comfortable as may be expected...



On the left is a piece from Nantucket by Kathy Mason-Lerner... On the right is a corner at home... Bill Wheeler and Michelle Bellefeuille...