by David DeMullé
As a longtime fan of the wit and wisdom of Marlene Hitt, I had overlooked the possibility of her penning a work of art that transcends the everyday realities of our little vortex.
Over the years, I have gleefully read and enjoyed the rivalries of the different authors attempting to lay out what Sunland-Tujunga really was at the time of its founding. Authors such as Mary Lee Tiernin, Mary Lou Pozzo and Sara Lombard called out in detail the trials and tribulations of our forbearers into a stark Reality of facts. Facts melded with conjecture, stories woven together through the researches of these esteemed ladies.
And then, I discovered the brilliance of Marlene as an observer of the strengths and frailties of those who lived here and were in daily contact with Marlene the child, the woman, and the chronicler.
As I flowed through the corridors of her mind, hand in hand with her memories, and always with the touchstone of those objects that are still here to be seen in one form or another, I felt the relationships of all the characters that she not only allows to present themselves, but to reveal their stories and diversities in a natural flow and rhythm that both awes and propels you through her past and into your presence.
As each chapter/door opens and then leads to another, you are taken on a magical journey through the eyes of a child/ woman. Joy, sorrow and feelings with an overall sense of having participated in both her growth and the growth of our community, leads the reader on and on, until at last, you can let out your breath and relax – from the wondrous journey that has made you feel wise, worn and petulant.
I promise that you will discover the humor of Marlene the observer, rich with the experiences of life, with a little self-deprecation thrown in.
Clocks & Water Drops is a wonderful read.
Available at Bolton Hall Museum, Tujunga, CA.