A reader named Hal Linker,* and his wife, Hadla, found this blog recently and left a comment in the “Things That Aren’t Here Anymore” thread. And what a comment! It may be the length of two, or three, or even four of my columns, full of memories of our various cities.
Rather than bury it back there in that thread, I’m going to run it here up front, serialized in manageable chunks over a week. Or two. Or three. We’ll see. Take it away, Hal:
I’m a bit late with these comments but just stumbled onto this blog when Yahoo-ing “DiGangi’s.” My wife and I were just remembering how great their grinders were. We were shocked to see something came up on the search. So, sorry if we’re beating a dead horse.
My family moved to Chino (from Bellflower) in 1956 when I was just a tot. My dad had a dairy farm. Chino had very little in the way of civilization at that time. It was a prison town. Getting groceries in the 1950s was a weekly family event for which we all got in dad’s DeSoto and headed for the Market Basket on East End and Holt. It was like going into town for supplies / vittles.
At that time Chino had nothing close to a supermarket. This would change in the 1960s when Alpha Beta opened a location on Central and Walnut (now defunct — torn down and converted into offices — though some of the adjacent buildings still stand — including the old Alphy’s Restaurant which is now a medical building, but prior to that, had been a restaurant called Bailey’s).
Next time: record stores.
* Update: As corrected in part 2, Hal Linker was a pseudonym.