Good Morning, God!
This photo was taken as we flew home from L.A. I was delighted to “capture” one of the Channel Islands. But, which one was it? I checked a map of the northern Channel Islands and I’m pretty sure the photo is of the biggest one, Santa Cruz. Friends have told me they want to visit the Channel Islands National Park so I thought I’d find out more about them.
These islands were once one mega-island and they were the home of The Arlington Springs Man who lived 13,000 years ago. That’s the earliest finding of people in the New World — and they were found on an island off of California! The article mentioned that the remains of a complete pygmy mammoth (four to six feet tall) was also found on these islands — living in the same period (Pleistocene) as the early humans. Pygmy mammoths! I am sitting here, smiling, God! Our world is filled with marvels and surprises.
The people that lived on Santa Cruz for over 8,000 years are the Chumash and the name means “makers of shell bead money.” That is what their relatives on the mainland (between San Luis Obispo and Malibu) called them. Now, God, I know YOU know all of this — but it is new to me. Then the article said the Spanish came and settled and raised cattle and sheep. I worried about what happened to the Chumash.
But, there are still Chumash people! And it seems that they were reconnecting with their past about the same time (1976) as the Hawaiians were. This photo is from 2001 when they made the crossing over to Santa Cruz in a replica of an old canoe.
It doesn’t sound as if any of them live on the islands any longer. I wonder if they would like to live there? After 8,000 years I would think they would want to keep that string going. There are fresh water springs so they could live there. Ah, but I suppose that making shell bead money doesn’t pay like it used to.
Thank You, God, for stretching my mind — and my sense of Time.