The California Birthday Book eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 208 pages of information about The California Birthday Book.

Old San Francisco, which is the San Francisco of only the other day—­the day before the earthquake—­was divided midway by the Slot.  The Slot was an iron crack that ran along the center of Market street, and from the Slot arose the burr of the ceaseless, endless cable that was hitched at will to the cars it dragged up and down.  In truth, there were two Slots, but, in the quick grammar of the West, time was saved by calling them, and much more that they stood for, “The Slot.”  North of the Slot were the theaters, hotels and shipping district, the banks and the staid, respectable business houses.  South of the Slot were the factories, slums, laundries, machine shops, boiler works, and the abodes of the working class.

in Saturday Evening Post.

MAY 1.


A year ago, Jack and I set out on a horseback trip through the northern counties of California.  It just now came to me—­not the date itself, but the feel of the sweet country, the sweetness of mountain lilacs, the warm summer-dusty air. * * * And here in Hawaii, I am not sure but I am at home, for our ground is red, too, in the Valley of the Moon, where home is—­dear home on the side of Sonoma Mountain, where the colts are, and where the Brown Wolf died.

in Log of the Snark.

MAY 2.

  A dull eyed rattlesnake that lay
  All loathsome, yellow-skinned, and slept,
  Coil’d tight as pine-knot, in the sun
  With flat head through the center run,
  Struck blindly back.


The air was steeped in the warm fragrance of a California spring.  Every crease and wrinkle of the encircling hills was reflected in the blue stillness of the laguna.  Patches of poppies blazed like bonfires on the mesa, and higher up the faint smoke of the blossoming buckthorn tangled its drifts in the chaparral.  Bees droned in the wild buckwheat, and powdered themselves with the yellow of the mustard, and now and then the clear, staccato voice of the meadow-lark broke into the drowsy quiet—­a swift little dagger of sound.

in Stories of the Foothills.

MAY 3.


The voyager when the glass-bottom boat starts is first regaled with the sandy beach, in three or four feet of water.  He sees the wave lines, the effect of waves on soft sand, the delicate shading of the bottom in grays innumerable; now the collar-like egg of a univalve or the sharp eye of a sole or halibut protruding from the sand.  A school of smelt dart by, pursued by a bass; and as the water deepens bands of small fish, gleaming like silver, appear; then a black cormorant dashing after them, or perchance a sea-lion browsing on the bottom in pursuit of prey.  Suddenly the light grows dimmer; quaint shadows appear on the bottom, and almost without warning the lookers on are in the depths of the kelpian forest.

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The California Birthday Book from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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