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Tim Myers: Exiting the SCV: Not easy, but exciting

Posted: August 17, 2013 2:00 a.m.
Updated: August 17, 2013 2:00 a.m.
 

We built 17 years of our life based on a book and a recommendation from a law school classmate.

When relocating from Texas to California in 1996 to take a job with Price Waterhouse in their downtown Los Angeles office on Hope Street, the basically Nebraskan Myers clan needed a place to live.

Based solely on a recommendation from a law school classmate who resides in Canyon Country and a book that ranked Valencia in the top 10 communities to live, we decided to try Santa Clarita.

After a short stint in a corporate apartment in Newhall and a few months in a rental house in Northbridge, we found ourselves ensconced in our home in Northbridge that found itself emptied of all our possessions Aug. 10.

The new owners will take possession Monday, just a few months before the anniversary of our ownership.

Oh, the events that occurred in that house! Three of our five children raised to adulthood, alumna of Helmers Elementary School, Arroyo Seco and Rio Norte junior high schools and Valencia High School.

An eldest daughter educated originally in Nebraska beginning a career in nursing, and welcoming our first grandchild.

My Nebraska bride with her wide circle of friends and church and tennis involvement, so deep in the latter that she (and I, in appropriate second billing) have Court No. 5 at Valencia High School named after us.

But employment funds everything, and for seven years I worked in downtown Los Angeles, taking maximum advantage of the reliable Metrolink train connections.

For five glorious years I got to work locally for Landscape Development Inc. with a five-minute one-way commute, but the bursting of the housing bubble and the subsequent steep decline in residential housing construction, not to mention the need to fund college tuitions and other luxuries like food and shelter, required a job change in 2008 to Pacific Life in Newport Beach, resulting in a punishing daily commute. Plans were laid to eventually move to South Orange County.

Those plans now come to fruition, and I am left to contemplate these last 17 years and the richness of our lives in Santa Clarita, and after the efforts of my Nebraska bride, I must credit much to these weekly columns in The Signal.

The columns began in late 1996, a continuation of the long tradition of unpaid community columnists appearing in The Signal, from Dan Hon and Richard Rioux to Steve Lunetta and Gary Horton.

My particular columns began originally under the moniker "Tim Discovers," where I wrote weekly hagiographies to the SCV about all the wonderful things the Myers Clan discovered during those first years in this valley.

The columns provided a doorway into the Santa Clarita Valley, and not in the way one might expect. I met many important and influential folks in the SCV when they took issue with something written in a column and would want to meet personally to "set me straight."

Their care and dedication to the community always impressed me, and local politics always fascinated me.

But, unfortunately, while strong involvement exists it finds itself spread rather thin. While the upcoming City Council election with a crowded field of candidates should prove fascinating, voter participation will not exceed 18 percent to 20 percent.

In the November election two school boards (Castaic and, incredibly, the massive Hart district) will find elections unnecessary since only the incumbents filed nomination papers.

The Sulphur Spings, Saugus Union and Newhall School districts will hold elections only because of the entry of one or two unknown candidates.

Finally, the Newhall County Water District, once a focal point of local efforts to restrict the growth that we certainly saw during our 17 years of residence, will find only one unknown challenge to take on the three incumbents.

So, other than the City Council election, move along, not much to see here.

But unfortunately, I will miss most the (probably) unsuccessful battle of the city against the recent Voting Rights Act legal action brought to bring about districts in the city of Santa Clarita.

The ins and outs of that battle would provide incredible fodder for future columns not written.

Because, folks, despite my great love for the SCV, one can only hold love and affection for one place, and I must embrace my new community in South Orange County fully and unconditionally.

So this is it, folks, the last installment of Myers’ Musings. Thanks for the 17 years and good luck for the future!

Tim Myers has been a Valencia resident for 17 years. His column has appeared Saturdays in The Signal, and we wish him and his Nebraska bride well in their new home.

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