Tag Archives: Woodland Hills

The Adventures of Sony and Raubie Part Three

The Adventures of Sony and Raubie Part Three.


Who is stroking their carrots?


The apartment was adjoined at the hip to the subway. Every time the subway went by the building shook. It was either Queens or Yonkers New York where we watched; looking down from the tall building to the streets below. We were staying only for a few days while the bands where in town. At dusk the produce stores closed down and locked up, pulling down their metal roller type garage doors.  Later, the limousines drove up. The tall mannequin looking young women and the old gray-haired men were steeping out; the sounds of disco, a really terrible kind, blared below.It was the luck of being young and beautiful. It was of being old  and foolish… with loads of dough. We watched and listened until the sun came up. ~ Excerpt from The Seminary of Praying Mantis : A Punkalullaby: In New York by Hudley Flipside

Canoga Park, West Hills and Woodland Hills have something interesting going on. On every block you see them. Actually three types of businesses are booming here. Psychics, tobacco stores and massage parlors. They are on the increase. These cities are up to something that I have not figured out yet. It feels like the kind of wheeling & dealing that smells fraudulent.

The tobacco stores aren’t so strange. In fact most of them look manly and are rather attractive. The psychics are not so bad. They are growing in number. If they are not doing so well with their crystal balls, you can always see their boats, trailers and expensive appliances for sale. The message parlors seem more sinister.

These places are not legally run by a chiropractor or homeopathic doctor because these types of doctors are licensed practitioners. When you open the door to the sound of a jingling bell at these local massage parlors whom do you think you will see?

We need to legalize prostitution. I say this to protect the women who are working at these places. I am focusing on the possibility that we are ignormantly supporting human trafficking at aany zip code.

If we are not going to be honest about these places and legalize prostitution, then we should close them down.

I understand men have their needs. I am not talking about their need to get a carrot message or table shower. ( whatever the hell that is?) I am asking these customers to think about who is stroking their carrots? Is it some young foreign woman who speaks very little English with high heels? Human Trafficking is most likely the truth here. A mother, a daughter, a sister … yes.



The Adventures of Sony and Raubie Part Three

Headless Horseman Road

Sony and Holly 1970s

Photo by Steve Hudson

Canoga Avenue from Mulholland to Oxnard was overwhelmingly wild. It was only a two-lane avenue lined with residential homes, farms, and empty fields. The big eucalyptus trees monstered along Canoga Avenue gracing through the heart of Woodland Hills. We chased wild rabbits bareback where Warner Center now suffocates the land.  Stealing pumpkins late at night from the many pumpkin patches was a scary treat for us kids around autumn. Now Kaiser Permanente stands tall over ghostly pumpkins that linger there only as memories.

Ruff and I rode our horses after school which did not give us much time. We had to make it back home around dusk. This gave us a couple of hours to ride. We had it in our minds to visit down an old dirt road up near Canoga moving south towards Mulholland. We noticed this dirt road a few times on our rides up to Mulholland where it seemed endless trails awaited us, but now was not the time.

The dirt road branched off to the east and was a long lonely one. Pepper trees mixed with eucalyptus trees mingled along the road as large trunks and heavy branches. A small forest. We got off our horses to look around. This is what I liked best about growing up here. There were adventures and places to discover around my home town. Shadowy places of earth and trails leading sometimes through the fog. This dirt road led us to a hill that was very steep to the right side of it. We passed this hill and galloped about a mile or two up and then decided to turn back because the sun was getting close to the horizon. It was a cool night and the smell of trees, moist earth, herbs, and smoke from nearby fireplaces filled our senses. But the darkening sky called us back home. It was getting late.

We were about a mile from Canoga when Sony galloped forward. I am not sure how it happened but he went for a tree. A long tree reached out and I thought I could go no further under it. I realized as Sony went under the tree it got lower. Sony stopped and my legs jammed under the tree. I was stuck under the tree bent backwards, and Sony was still moving forward. Ruff quickly positioned her horse in front of Sony as I pulled on the reins backwards. I cried because I was being crushed. We all moved backwards and Sony and I were released. It was a focused effort for all four of us, horse and rider and it took a good ten minutes.

As we all gathered our breath we took some time to look at the tree and cuss it out. Then there was silence, except for the sound of a galloping horse in the distance down the dirt road coming towards us.

“What the hell is that” said Ruff?

“I don’t know but it is coming this way!”

The echo of the sound was due east. We jumped on our horses and ran them about a mile towards Canoga. The dusk had almost brought down the nights curtain.  As the dirt road ended and the street began, the metal sound of the horse’s hooves running on asphalt was loud enough to hide the echo of the unknown galloping horse behind us. I then yelled at her,

“Ruff, do you hear the screeching sound?”

“Yes, let’s get out of here!”

Maybe it was a screeching sound behind us or maybe it was the sound of our horse’s hooves on the asphalt. The haunting feelings subsided as we left the dirt road and made it home by night fall. It was smart to look forward and never look back. We knew the headless horseman returned and we never again wandered down that dirt road together.

A few years ago, I went back looking for the dirt road we referred to as the headless horseman road. It is an asphalt street now with a few nice homes lined along its narrow way. Driving by in my car I did not drive down it due east. I passed it by due north with the memory of days gone by.

To Ruff !! One of the best wild friends to have as a girl!!

The Adventures of Sony and Raubie Part One

Holly and Sony near Mulholland Highway and Canoga Ave 1972

“a mile wide and a foot deep, too thick to drink, too thin to plow; Powder River let ‘er buck!”

An Old Cowboy call … now  Raphalia’s call across the valley to tell me it was time to ride.

You might think that two girls that had a couple of horses might come from rich families. This was not the case. The road I lived on was dirt until I turned about 13. That is when my Dad got me a white mustang I named Sony. My brother Greg and brother-in-law Bob built a corral below my parent’s home.  They put turpentine on the base of the two-by-fours, these were the base ends of the corral to house Sony. That corral stood up fine for many years after Sony and I left.

At the time it was about me and my focus on getting that horse and going for a ride, but I guess it was a family project that pushed and waved through the family with different temperaments. At least that is how I see it now. My Dad was retired in his fifties from his career in cosmology. He had his own salon called Javis’s Hair Salon downtown Woodland Hills. Now he worked at home and at some local beauty parlors in the area to support the family. My mom was a full time house wife and during the winter worked at my aunts boutique girls clothing store. Boy did I get shit for that in middle school,

“Your aunt owes Prima Donnas?”


“My mother can not afford that type of clothing,”

Of course all the popular girls went there and that just made me sick.

My aunt’s store  was right next door to my Dad’s place that was now rented out. My Grandmother was quite the woman and had foresight, she made sure her kids had some land to grow up on.

Raphalia (aka Ruff) was younger than I and had a horse named Raubie. Her mom was German. She and her sister filled out a greencard each year and she came from a broken family. Her mom was a surgical-nurse and married a doctor and then moved into the neighborhood. I called her Ruff and we got along good. We went riding together often. Her parents built a corral next to their home as well. SO the neighborhood got pretty horsey. At the time houses were still spread apart and there was lots of land, rolling hills and trees around. The big horse flies that came round summer bugged the hell out of my mom. Before I came in the house my mom would make me take off my clothes and put on house clothing. I guess I did smell bad. Ruff and I did go bareback riding most the time.

Ruff did a lot of reading. She liked to tell stories too. While on long rides we told stories together. It was the never-ending story. I would begin and then she took over and so it went.  We often road above the hills of Mulholland. The adventures we had were unbelievable wild. Some of the Native American stories that Ruff would read would give her interesting ideas on how to ride a horse. She braided Raubies’s abandoned horse hair into a bridle. This was placed around Raubie’s mouth and this is how she controlled him.

There were large dirt hills and mounds on Mulholland drive where guys would dirt bike. We would hold onto the back of our horses with our thighs with hands up and run our horses down a hill on a dare. Often one of us would fall off our horse. I experienced the fall in slow motion and then the ground wold grasp and pull me down fast. We learned to fall in the form of tumble weeds and sometimes my horse Sony would keep running.  My mom would look and see Sony running into the corral. In an hour I would follow. I would either walk home or Ruff would give me a ride on the back of Raubie depending on the mood she was in.

Until next time with the Adventures of Sony and Raubie ~next Beer, Ginger Ale and Gristle.