Twenty years ago today Shannon and I were married here: St. Theresa of Avila Church in Bodega, California. The white, wooden church with a steeple sits on a hilltop above the small, rural coastal town. The church was built by shipbuilders in 1859 and is the oldest church in continuous use in Sonoma County. Ansel Adams made the church the subject of a black and white photograph in 1953, and we have hung a copy on the wall in the living room wherever we’ve lived over the years — San Francisco’s North Beach, San Anselmo in Marin County and Nevada City. The church is located next to the Bodega schoolhouse, which was the setting for the schoolhouse scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s film, The Birds. Hitchcock attended services there during its filming. The town carries a special meaning for our family: My parents lived in Bodega Bay for years, and my father was born in nearby Sebastopol. My parents are buried in the cemetery there. At our wedding reception, near the water in Bodega Bay, my Chronicle coworker Don Clark (now of the Wall Street Journal), his wife and friends played classic Irish music. Our life-long friend Anita Minard was the caterer. We kept it small, about 60 people. It was a very memorable day.
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