Return to Santa Rosa

The Home from the Rocks in the Backyard
Lullaby for Kara / Rick Sowash

John Fraim

A return to Santa Rosa, California. Where I lived for a number of years. You live in many places in life but just one of them truly feels like home when all is said and done. 

It’s a hot August all over the nation. I’ve rented a home for a week for the family in Santa Rosa, California.  It’s one of the hottest areas of a hot Sonoma County each year where there is always the threat of another great fire sweeping through the area. Like it did just a few years ago. This year has been historically dry as the great drought in California continues to wage war on the state. 

The home is at the top of a string of streets and almost directly east of the famous Spring Lake Park the borders the magnificent Annadel Park’s 5,000 acres where I hiked much of during my years in Santa Rosa.

Some of the Bushes in the Backyard of my Home Rental

I’ve rented a home for the nine of us (seven adults and my two grandsons). My wife and my oldest son and family. His wonderful wife and my two grandsons. Living in Germany now. My other son who living in Oakland. Both, born in San Francisco. And, my step-daughter and her husband. 

I searched through the homes on the Internet for rent in Sonoma County. I narrowed things down to five with the help of my step-daughter and wife. I decided on this one in the area near Spring Lake and Annadel Park. We moved in the other day and it was much like the home I hoped it would be. One of those places that match your idea of what a home you want some day. 

Not the perfect place. But close to it in many ways. It is located on maybe two acres in the hills of Santa Rosa around the area of Spring Lake to the east and rising above the lake, the great park of Annadel rising like a great island above the eastern part of Santa Rosa. But a place I feel good about renting for a week. With the huge backyard of wilderness and rocks and all types of different trees. And critters most likely.

A Gecko in our backyard I discovered through my backyard explorations of the new rental.

Some of the Backyard of my Rental in Santa Rosa

After dinner of pizza tonight, and a swim in the pool that comes with the home. Our first night at the place. Everyone has retired to bed tonight after splashing around in the pool and the pizza dinner on a hot Sonoma August day. The first evening in our rental in Santa Rosa. 

I stand next to the rectangular pool that has been such a hit with the family.

Water toys from my two grandsons bob up and down in waves of the pool at 10:00 pm at night. The temperature has quickly descended to around 60 degrees. 

The property is full of all types of different trees and plants. Mixed in with the huge rocks of the area. In the rough and dramatic environment of Sonoma County. The grandest explosion of different plants and trees and flowers and vines. Thanks to a Santa Rosa person named Luther Burbank. 

Next day, a got my camera out and tried to capture some of all of this. A type of return home to a place I lived twenty years ago. And, a place I always felt was home. Somehow. After all those years. When I lived there all those years ago. 

The Backyard of the Home
The Pool Area and Home in the Background

4 thoughts on “Return to Santa Rosa

  1. wow, john. nice digs! whenever i go down to the bay area, i usually fly into santa rosa and, from there, head down to marin where most, not all, of my friends are. it saves having to drive up through the city if i fly into sfo. i’m always charmed by the charles schulz airport – tiny, user-friendly – with its “peanuts” stuff all over the place, though it seems to have been under renovation for years now. next time i’ll have to schedule some time to check out santa rosa itself.

  2. I am sure you had a lot of fun with your family in this big home, and enjoyed the pool and surroundings. It looks very peaceful and lovely.. I think it would be fun to explore all the property through the trees, rocks . Glad you and your family got a chance to be all together.

  3. John,
    Be sure to take your whole family to dinner at ‘The River’s End Restaurant and Inn in Jenna…I’m sure they would all enjoy it.

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