Dear Action Line: Montview Parkway is wide enough to land an airplane on, but it would be a rough landing with all those huge drainage ditches. Why was Montview built so wide? – Stephanie Herbst
Dear Stephanie: The answer is that no one really knows for certain, but there is speculation.
We’ll start with the obvious, that it actually was built as a runway. Action Line did some delving and found a photo of Charles Lindbergh standing next to his plane on Montview Parkway. There is no date on the photo, but there are persistent rumors among those in the know that Lindbergh actually began his famous flight to France by taking off from Montview Parkway.
Sure, you can believe that hooey about taking off from Roosevelt Field in New York on that historic day of May 20, 1927. It makes those zillions of New Yorkers all happy and boastful, but it’s all just a bit too simple. Consider: Why would he go all the way to Paris when he could have saved a few hundred miles and landed in, say, Cork, Ireland? Or Skibbereen?
Yeah, see? There’s no good answer.
He went on to Paris because it was more fun being in the air – a much simpler, freer existence than being on the ground, where he was mobbed by paparazzi for the rest of his life. Similarly, he wanted to add some mileage on the front end, so he began in Durango that day, taking off from Montview Parkway. The big ditches were added later. (Duh!)
For those who ignore obvious truths, here’s some further speculation.
The city of Durango and its planning department did some digging into this question, but found nothing in its files that gives a clue as to the thinking when Montview was created back in the post-World War II era. The 1950s saw the Crestview area quickly developed with homes as the city grew, partly because of a boom in the oil and gas industry.
Kevin Hall, assistant city manager, wonders if Durangoans believed there might be future growth to the west and a wide access street would meet future needs. Or was a landscaped median envisioned there, similar to East Third Avenue near downtown?
Greg Hoch, retired city planner director, speculated to Hall that some developers began from the north, some from the south, and when they met in the middle there wasn’t quite enough room for another strip of homes.
See? None of these theories from the city makes any sense at all. The unearthed Lindbergh photo should be proof enough for anyone who understands plain truth.
Dear Action Line: Why? – Who
Dear Who: As he was attempting to do, “Who” has set the new record for the shortest Action Line question. It feels like an Abbott and Costello routine could quickly break out, but let’s not go there.
Action Line takes every question seriously. Even the metaphysical. So who better to handle this one than someone who dares to consider an answer? We dropped this doozy on Erin Treat, guiding teacher at the Durango Dharma Center, and humbly asked for a reply.
Here is “why”:
“The ancient teachings of Buddhism point us to know directly that when conditions are such, this arises. And that when conditions are not such, this does not arise. In every moment, we experience the results of past conditions, including the presence of ancestral and systemic realities that shape our lives – and we are part of creating the moments of the future. When we meet the present moment with mindfulness, wisdom and compassion, we plant the seeds for there to be less suffering in the future. So perhaps a question to add is ‘how.’ How are you in relationship to this moment? On collective and systemic levels, understanding the ‘why’ may help us to create the ‘how.’ When we meet the moment with mindful awareness, we are doing our part to understand and respond to how things are in a way that may lead us in the direction of a more peaceful and just future.”
There. Meditate on that for a while. It’ll do you good.
Thank you, Erin.
Back to the future?Our neighborhood was tossed into a tizzy last week when city of Durango street crews planted signs that seemed to indicate some sort of maintenance was going to be performed between 3/30/21 and 3/21/21. “No Parking,” it warned, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. these days.
The problem was that the signs appeared on 3/29/21.
We banged our heads together. Was time about to reel backward? Did we need to crank up the time machine and re-park our vehicles on those days already in the past? Would we receive parking tickets retroactively? Had our vehicles already been towed and – real mind-bender – we didn’t even know?
Our consternation level dropped when someone suggested this might just be a typo, and that 3/21/21 should be 3/31/21.
Two lessons from Action Line, a serial editor: Please proofread, and don’t depend on spell-check to fix dates.
Email questions and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. Trivia from last week: Although George Jackson wrote “One Bad Apple” with the Jackson 5 in mind, who actually made it a No. 1 song? It was The Osmonds in 1971. Incidentally, George Jackson was no relation to the Jackson 5.
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