A day at the cemeteries

Hoisan Roots

A couple days ago, I met up with a few like-minded individuals at a cluster of cemeteries in Colma, California, which is a town that goes by the slogan “It’s great to be alive in Colma.” Supposedly there are about 2,000 residents in this town and 2 million buried there, what a hoot. Why so many dead people? Well, nearby San Francisco decided they would no longer have dead bodies buried within city limits once upon a time over 100 years ago, and so the existing cemeteries moved their internments out to the ‘burbs that are Colma, and a slew of new cemetery land was established.

We chose three cemeteries to visit, each having a different variety of Chinese headstones on display.

First up was Woodlawn, which is not exclusively Chinese but sure is popular for a lot of Chinese families. Woodlawn is well maintained, looks like a mini…

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