Escondido, CA
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ED GALLO SPEAKS


How about some good news to start. I’m sure you are all aware of how housing prices have been escalating to new records monthly. This having been said, I was amazed to learn of a house, actually an estate, available for sale at less than half price. If interested you will have to move to the Los Angeles neighborhood where this property is located. Is it OK to call Beverly Hills a neighborhood?

Anyway, this is the Hearst estate, not to be confused with the Hearst Castle in San Simeon, which was featured in the “Godfather” movie where Tom Hagan visited to talk with the owner movie mogul Jack Woltz who awoke the next morning with a surprise in his bed. 

Two weeks ago I mentioned famous movie quotes including “I made him an offer he can’t refuse.” Now is your chance to do the same with the current owner of this famous home albeit with court approval.

No doubt, multiple offers will be presented to purchase this 29,000 square foot Mediterranean style estate when people learn that for less than 50% of the previous asking price years ago you can move into luxury. Originally offered at $195 million this beauty can be yours for a mere $89.7 million. I’m not sure if the home is sold furnished. That would definitely be a coup.

Last week this paper reported that new city entry monument signs will begin construction this week. Some years ago, Joyce Masterson led city staff in designing new entry monuments to be placed in various locations so it was good news to see that finally we will see these attractive additions to three entry points to Escondido. I think we need a fourth. About 15 years ago the council approved my suggestion to set aside $300,000 for CCP median landscaping from El Norte Pkwy to Country Club Lane which was finally accomplished in 2012. A similar entry monument should be placed in the area of CCP and Country Club Lane. This area screams for a “Welcome to Escondido” message.

The other day I drove up I-15 to the Mountain Meadow Road exit and noticed, in my opinion, an over-abundance of traffic signals and all were outlined with dayglo yellow frames and the same on the signals at the Mesa Rock Road intersection. 

Not being aware of the accident history at these two intersections I question the framing of the lights. Is this a test for visibility? I mean, no way could anyone with eyes open not see the signalization even without the framing. Holy cow!

Speaking of traffic safety brought to mind lighting on automobiles. When cars and trucks became a thing 100 plus years ago they had one taillight roughly three inches in diameter. The past few decades have seen numerous red lens lights added to the rear of vehicles. It’s almost scary when some drivers hit the brakes the red taillights are almost blinding and yet we still have rear end collisions. Recently I saw a big rig with running lights surrounding the entire trailer. Could not be missed.

History time. This reminded me of the when Escondido over 70 years ago had only one traffic light which was at the intersection of Broadway and Grand Ave. Many years ago speaking with some longtime residents and retired police officers I was told that the light was actually portable being stored at PD headquarters which was at Valley Boulevard. This is one block between Grand and Valley Pkwy. They mentioned that it was the responsibility of PD to push the signal to the intersection when needed and the officer who was in the Chief’s doghouse was the one who had to push the light five blocks in place. If the doghouse was empty I do not know who would be chosen.

Good news came this week with the county being moved up a notch on the State’s color chart dictating how restaurants can operate. I congratulate all the owners who were able to remain in business during the past year. I also hope people can now cut back on shopping on line and return to going shopping again and keep our brick and mortar retailers thriving and hiring even though Amazon, Fed X and UPS have been ramping up their business to handle the enormous growth they have experienced during the pandemic. Any shift back to what we remember as normal would be great.

As much as I try to determine the meaning of personalized plates there are many that I do not understand. 14GRACE, GAGALFE, TRIP 7, and FLWRJUL are a few. Can’t figure out EEMOJEE but it was on a tricked out bright yellow Hummer. Nice. Be careful, stay well.

*Note: Opinions expressed by columnists and letter writers are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the newspaper.

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