Under the Sun: Interviews ~ Sonoma Valley Sun


Under the Sun: Shannon, a neighbor to Wingo

Posted on September 3, 2016 by Sonoma Valley Sun

Hello, thanks for stopping, I was looking for M—-. We were neighbors before he moved to Wingo.

Oh, you mean M—- ? He passed last month.


Who else is living there? I was hoping to talk with someone from Wingo.

There’s no one left since he passed. Four of the cabins used to be occupied.


So you live out here?

Yes, but not in Wingo. We’re on an island. Three creeks surround us.


How long have you lived out here?

My husband and I have been here 20 years. His family has farmed out here since the 70s. My kids are fifth generation in the Valley. This is all private property — the road you’re on is private property, too. The county road in has been closed for a couple of years.


Is there any other way to get in?

Nope. No other way to drive in. Walk-in only.


I crossed railroad tracks.

That’s right. The train still comes through. There was an old monorail from Wingo to Schellville, a primordial railroad. It had to stop at Schellville because they couldn’t get an above-grade crossing there.


What can you tell me about Wingo?

It was an old shipping port. The bridge there is a drawbridge; the bridge tender’s cabin is next to it. The boats would come all the way up to Larson Landing. The farmers shipped their hay to San Francisco.


Pretty secluded, no? Do you get lonely out here?

We like it. The kids all go to school in Sonoma. Prestwood, Adele and the high school.


I bet you see lots of wildlife?

A good bit. Coyotes, river otters, beavers. We’ve lost a few willow trees to beavers over the years. We’ve sighted mountain lions. And there are lots of birds. Golden eagles.


What services do you have?

We get PG&E and phone. We’re on a well, of course. We get mail out on the highway.


What about high water? Does it flood?

The levees protect us.


Sure you won’t let me take a photo for the story?

What do you think, kid? No, we don’t think so. People who know us will know who we are, but I don’t want the rest of the world coming around. I want to respect my in-laws’ seclusion and privacy.

 — Interview by Anna Pier


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