How I arrived in Ocean Beach
December 25, 1969

The story has been around for years and most people have come to think of it as a fable. It is not. It is, in fact, fact. I have photographic proof (newly surfaced in my files) of the moment I decided to move to Ocean Beach, someday.

What happened is this:

I arrived at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego to attend Radio Repair School. I received a three day pass since I reported in the day before Christmas, 1969.

On Christmas Day, I took a walk to have a cigar that a guy on the plane from Chicago gave me as a gift. After an entire morning, I arrived at the Ocean Beach Fishing Pier with cigar, camera, too much Xmas spirit, and too little money.

While I was taking my self-timer recorded portrait, I noticed a pelican on the railing. He watched me and I decided to do something nice for something other than me, in the spirit of Christmas. I bought the pelican $ .25 cents worth of anchovies from the bait shop on the pier and watched him eat them. Several other people stopped to look and I took these photos.

As I gazed back at OB, I proclaimed, out loud, "Someday, someway, I am going to live in this town!" It was a moment for the ages. Unfortunately, no movie footage exists but these stills are evidence of the truth to the fable.

(As usual, click on the little picture to see the big picture.)

Nowell at 19.

The pelican responsible for my decision to move to OB.

The 25 cent's worth of anchovies in the bucket.

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