Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Long Time, No Write and Winnetka

First I want to apologize to my devoted followers for not posting in six weeks!  I cannot believe how the time got away from me.

We have safely landed in Eugene, Oregon and I have a lot to share.  I also have tons of photos taken since San Diego and will try to faithfully reconstruct our California travels.

I want to mention that I am no longer using the Earthlink email.  My new email is cattfoy@gmail.com.

As promised I will begin with our visits to Winnetka, Simi Valley and Ojai.

We were welcomed warmly by Renee and Luther at their home and sacred space in the Winnetka neighborhood of Los Angeles.  Affectionately named The Winnetka Tower, they have created a very special energy in their home where they often host pagan gatherings and ceremonies.

The Winnetka Tower
When they remodeled after the Northridge earthquake, they added this lovely tower.  The house itself is warm, inviting, grounded.  I took many pictures--too many to share them all here, but I will offer a few to give you an idea.
Ceremonial area at Winnetka Tower
Rick at Winnetka Tower

 Everywhere there are little touches of whimsy, magick, and beauty. From exterior lights to the darkest corner of the breezeway, Renee and Luther have made, placed or added objects from nature, antiques, and fun little surprises.
 Renee was a dancer in her youth--dancing with the Grateful Dead and other famous Berkeley bands. An infinitely interesting woman, she calls herself a "hedge witch," was an actual attendee at Woodstock and now teaches educational psychology at LA area colleges.
Faeries, angels, witches, green men, goddesses and touches of nature abound.  Every corner is a pocket of visual interest. 

Being there for a week was educational, both intellectually, historically, and spiritually.  The first day we were in Winnetka, Renee gave me a tour of the common areas of the house.  It was beautiful, filled with light and glass and wood and art.  It was earthy, magickal, cottage-like. As I drank in the delightful details, I realized that I was viewing this perfect home, not with envy, but with joy.

There was a time when such beauty and a deep sense of home would have filled me with an unrequited longing, a yearning and frustration because such a place felt denied to me. 

But magically, that old spell was broken and I could look upon her home with a sense of joy and a feeling of equality--I know now that I, too, will have a home again, a home like this one, filled with treasures, comfortable and convivial, a place of peace and ceremony and safety and Spirit.  And I know I am (we are) now making a new life, the life I was meant to have. 

While there, we visited Simi Valley and Ojai and scheduled events in both locations.  I also went to visit my old friend (soul sister) and "evil" twin, Leah Santos.  Sadly, she is having a tough time of it, reduced to living in a rundown little retirement home in a semi-industrial neighborhood.  She looked so sad and old, but we had a nice visit and I gave her a good pep talk.  Leah has given me so much over the years by believing in me and boosting my self-confidence in many things.  She is the person who got me into my first psychic fair and the recording artist with whom I sang backup.  (Cold Shott and the Hurricane Horns' Full Circle album.)

Leah is a psychic, astrologer, palmist, and blues singer extraordinaire.  She holds five gold records for her musical work in the 70s, sang backup with Ike and Tina Turner, has an IQ of something like 160, and is a high-energy dynamo.  She has also wrestled with drug and alcohol issues for years and some of us who love her best think she is likely bipolar.  But I pray for her, and send her my love and blessings and hope she will once again be able to rise above her current difficulties. 

There were others I wanted to connect with in LA, but was unable to contact them.  I think perhaps at least one of them has passed on or suffered from some debilitating illness that prevents them from posting on Facebook or answering emails.  I send my prayers to them too, whether still here in body or passed beyond.  It feels like a theme of leaving many folks I have known and loved behind in the past, as I move toward my future.

Leah Santos
Up Next:  Simi Valley and Ojai.


  1. I fondly remember Leah from Phx ~ she was a very busy lady. I hope she has found peace.

  2. hey leah was my neighbor and i was just thinking about her so i looked on google and found tyhis ad heh.. ill keep searching i just wanted to say hi to her and tell her we all still think of her in our lives. even in them crazy times . the doughnuts and gin heh.. hope i find her.