Invisible Trajectories

Emily from Yucaipa

I live in Yucaipa in an older house off of the main street in a little circle. It’s quiet over there cause there’s no traffic. There used to be no traffic, but you can hear it. Because of all the new development. It seems like they doubled the population.

There are so many people at the high school. It’s crazy at the Blvd. As far as getting around, I use a car. My sister and my brother both work out of town. They have to leave before the morning high school traffic. At 6:00am or after everybody is in school. More cars and more people and the high school population has gotten bigger.

My Dad works at Loma Linda hospital. He has to be at work at 6:30am so he gets up at 4:00am and has to be at the bus by 5:00. My mom drives him to the bus stop. It’s the only bus that goes thru Yucaipa. My mom and dad have a van, but my mom uses it to drive to work. He doesn’t use a car because there is a lot of traffic coming home. The bus drops him off right at the hospital. The hospital pays for his bus pass. My mom drives. She works at a preschool four blocks away so she brings stuff home all the time. We used to have a business and they worked right down the street. California Street used to be the main street where everything was. Now it’s not so big anymore. Lots of thrift stores now.

When I was young I used to walk to the 7-11. I walked all over to friend’s houses. I like Yucaipa. I really haven’t traveled. Everything I’ve ever done has been in Yucaipa. It’s special for me because I grew up there. Yucaipa has always been small, but with the new development it’s getting kind of weird. There are a lot of new things in general. There are whole new strip malls. We don’t have expensive high-end things.

At first we were welcoming, but now they are starting to build into the hills. It’s like cutting half of the hill down. It’s kind of ugly. It’s not attractive, but overall we welcome the change. There is no place for new roads or for them to be widened.

Certain places where I go, I know the more obscure ways of getting there. Past 5th street, by the library, all of the new development is on the left side. Past 5th street is where the new strip mall is, but there is nothing that would draw you there. I don’t spend a lot of time ‘down there.’ I used to volunteer at my mom’s work. Down the blvd. it’s like a giant street.

For everyday things I stay in Yucaipa, but to go to the movies or to go shopping you leave Yucaipa. You go to Redlands.

You always leave Yucaipa. You leave it to go other places. If you want to do anything to have to go to Redlands. Oak Glen Road used to be a long dark road. I’d hear about street races. I don’t know if that actually existed. The road had no stoplights, no stop signs, and no cops. I think they actually moved the road over when the new houses were built. I don’t know how they did that exactly.

Yucaipa is relatively safe and I have good access. This is coming from a middle class white kid. We’re on the hate map at the Museum of Tolerance. KKK meetings happened here. We were all very accepting of others. It’s predominately white, but it is becoming more Hispanic. It always was safe.

I really like the fact that it is a quiet town. It’s secluded. I don’t hear about murders in Yucaipa. Redlands is an older town, older buildings. They have more things: a mall and entertainment places. They also have more people and it’s harder to get around.

The Yucaipa City council: if you want anything done it takes forever, if you’re a struggling business. California street: they started to not do so well. The city council didn’t do anything to promote it. Nobody goes to 4th street anymore. There’s more than a few buildings, that one person owned, and they just boarded them up. They just let the area be nothing. I think they shouldn’t have let that happen. Our city council is mostly old people.

They want Yucaipa to stay small, but they’re planning for new houses. They want to build a theater. You want more things in Yucaipa and you don’t want more things in Yucaipa. It’s hard because Yucaipa is mostly older people. Younger people have nothing to do but the older people think it is great.

Notes on Yucaipa