The night holds many secrets. If you’ve been to the wonderous Monterey Aquarium, you’ll know Cannery Row as an example of a tourist McMalled Bif from a Back to the Future distopia. The building shown foreground in this photo is a ritzy hotel on Cannery Row.
I hate seeing people homeless, especially when surrounded by such affluence. But there is a certain delicious irony in the men hunkered down in the shadows under the hotel. In Steinbeck’s day, they would have been called “hobos”—and Cannery Row has built a tourist trap on the basis of nostalgia for that seediness. Things seem to have come full circle.