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Pockets Of The Past

June 24, 1989|DENNIS McCLELLAN | Times Staff Writer

They are remnants of a bygone Orange County, pockets of the past on a landscape grown increasingly urban. A gas station in Orange built when Packards and Duesenbergs ruled the road. A one-room schoolhouse in El Toro. A historic San Juan Capistrano neighborhood with homes dating back to the time of mission founder Father Junipero Serra. Like a mom and pop grocery store in a supermarket age or a two-chair barber shop in an era of trendy hair-styling salons, these settings hearken back to a simpler time before orange groves and bean fields gave way to crowded freeways and look-alike housing tracts. Their survival amid dramatic change is somehow reassuring. And, like rummaging through an attic and discovering a dusty old family photo album, stumbling upon one of these relics of the county's colorful past invites a pause to reflect on times gone by.

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