Olive in California

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    scan0069.jpgIn the summer of 1929, Olive Goodykoontz had no plans for the summer. Her friend Ada McCoy from Gilbert was heading to California to attend summer college courses and offered to take Olive along on the trip. Olive, who had not really traveled before this except to move from Indiana to Arizona, was uncertain. She had been thinking about attending one of the church camps up north again. Thankfully, her mother intervened. Having traveled herself, she knew how valuable the experience could be and she convinced Olive to go and visit some friends and family while there.

    Of course, Olive went and would continue to make long summer trips to the Pasadena/Los Angeles area (and once or twice a side-trip to Tijuana) for several more years. She had family in the area - aunts and uncles - as well as some friends who had made their way out there.

    Olive also visited California for spiritual reasons. There was a local collective of Quakers in Whittier (a town founded by Quakers) and sometimes Christian conferences were held in the L.A. area, complete with lectures and classes.

    The months Olive spent in California were her first real introduction to both being a tourist and living independently in a different environment. Olive was able to see an ocean for the first time, she went to all of the classic movie palaces during their heyday, she saw Los Angeles as it was first turning into something special.

    She also had her first experience dating, going steady with her cousin's friend Emmet for that whole first summer.

    Olive would make it out to California less and less as her work with the AFSC began to grow, but it was her time in California that paved the way for her to be the well-rounded leader and relief worker that she became.

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