UPDATE: It is important to remember that while California Missions have been hailed as places of peace, they also have deep and complicated histories, including slavery, violence, and forced religious conversion.
My last stop on this trip to San Francisco was Mission Dolores. It was on our way back to the airport, and so Patrick and I met up to visit the location together.
In Vertigo, Madeleine leaves the flower shop for the mission, and Scottie follows. She enters through a side door, goes through the chapel and into the cemetery where she stands over a grave, one which we later discover is marked as Carlotta Valdes.
Today, Mission Dolores is maintained as museum (actually, the door which Madeleine enters through is the very one visitors now enter through), and you can stroll through the chapel and the cemetery. Although over the decades, the cemetery has changed greatly. In Vertigo, it is much more lush, with walkways edged in neatly trimmed hedges, and other vegetation making it appear almost oasis like. Throughout the Mission’s history, the cemetery had to be reconfigured and some graves moved. Footsteps in the Fog notes that the Carlotta Valdes headstone, created for the film, remained as a popular tourist attraction, but has since been removed, deemed not authentic enough to remain in such a sacred place.
I love Missions and cemeteries in themselves, so I enjoyed the stroll through the area, in my grey suit of course…