Tehachapi's Online Community News & Entertainment Guide

Meet Your New Neighbors

Hilltop Welcoming Service

Gary and Wendy Perlin both lived in Tehachapi when they were young but never knew each other here. They were living in San Diego and had really had more than their fill of the big city and the expense of living there. They both had fond memories of Tehachapi, the four seasons and the natural surroundings, and both had vocations that would allow a move, so they began to look. With the help of a local realtor, they finally found the perfect rental in April. The first time Gary saw it he realized he had grown up right next door. The houses are reversed so he said that his new office corresponds to his childhood bedroom. It was like coming home.

Gary grew up in Tehachapi after living in Washington, Oregon and Nevada. He was born in Bend, Oregon. He said he has lived all over and has probably moved as many times as he is old but ended up in Tehachapi. His step father worked with the Los Angeles Police Department and commuted to LA until he finally tired of the commute. Gary lived in Tehachapi from the age of 10 to 18. He didn't know Wendy. She was in the same grade as his sister. He went in the Army for two-and-a-half years following high school and was stationed in Germany. Following the military, he went to the Art Institute in LA and studied Graphic Design. He has been an artist from the age of eight. He and Wendy met on Facebook in 2010 when she was organizing a Tehachapi reunion in Las Vegas. At that time she was living in Los Angeles and he was working in Phoenix. He friended her.

Wendy was born in Portland but was raised in Fairview, Oregon. An only child with a single mom, they moved to Tehachapi when her mother met and married a man in 1990 that lived here. She was in the 8th grade. They lived off-the-grid in Old West Ranch, an experience she hated. After high school Wendy attended San Diego State and then went on to study at the California Western School of Law. She passed the bar the first time she took it in 2005. She practiced law in Los Angeles and then in Seattle for two years, where she joined the law firm of Stoel Rives with offices in Portland and Seattle. She has been a paralegal since 2013, citing better benefits and pay. Her specialty is estate planning.

Since arriving in Tehachapi both Gary and Wendy have home offices. Gary has already begun doing some design work for the City and World Wind & Solar. He is a musician playing both guitar and drums. He likes to write, as well as fish and hike. Wendy said she is trying to find a hobby. She likes to read and hike and is looking into volunteering. She is also excellent at planning reunions. In the meantime, they content themselves with the company of their two Ragdoll cats named Napoleon and Sebastian.

Welcome back, Wendy and Gary. I'm sure we will be seeing you around town.

Kathleen Bruttomesso and her daughter Jamie arrived in Tehachapi in May from Mission Viejo in Orange County. Kathleen had been a registered nurse for 40 years with the last five of them spent at Saddleback Hospital, where she was overseeing accreditation and regulatory standards. When it was time to retire, she found that Orange County was just too expensive.

Kathleen was born in Minnesota but came to California at the age of two. She was raised in Long Beach and Huntington Beach with her five sisters and four brothers. She has four adult children and ten grandchildren, with one more on the way. In 1980 she moved to Las Vegas and lived there for 27 years. Friends from Las Vegas live in Tehachapi and she had been coming up to visit for years. They are now her neighbors. She heard about a new house being built near them, so she jumped at it. Kathleen said she had always dreamed about a house where she would be able to sit on the patio and enjoy the view. This was that house.

They still go back to Orange County often so that Jamie, a special needs athlete who has competed many years in the special Olympics, can visit with her friends. Kathleen said that Jamie has a lot of gold medals won in the sports of bowling and Bocci ball. Jamie said that she also spends a lot of time at the gym.

We are delighted that Kathleen and Jamie chose to join their friends here in Tehachapi. Welcome to both of you.


If you have moved to Tehachapi within the last six months, Hilltop Welcoming Service has a bag of information about the Greater Tehachapi area, its activities, events, government and facilities. There are always a few coupons and gifts, as well. It is a great way to learn about your new community. Being part of this column is strictly optional. If you would like a visit from the Welcome Hostess contact our office at (661) 822-8188.