Purgatory Auto Works and Dinosaur Farm

The home of Stega and Agent Smith, it was purchased it in the summer of 2015 and we moved down from Potrero Hill in San Francisco a bit after. Located in the Diablo Range of California about 3 miles from Mount Hamilton (in a straight line), we look out over all of the Santa Clara Valley.

Purgatory technically consists of: a
3.5 bath/5 bedroom house (although we don’t really use one of the baths and two of the of the bedrooms are used as offices);
a separate studio building (where the wine room is located); 
an incredibly large pool;
a very, very large garage (with a pit);
an old pole barn
almost 14 acres of land 1200-1300 feet above San Jose.

The central Mid Century Modern house was built in 1966 for Dr. John and Mary Richards and we are its third owner. Sadly the second owners habitualy deferred maintenance issues, but they also had questionable taste: hence we have a kitchen and two and a half bathrooms that don’t fit with the rest of the house….yet. The previous owners also allowed the land to be overgrazed (down to dust) and instead of actually fixing things they were very fond of using bandaids to hide issues.

Now, six years on, we have ripped off just about all those bandaids and almost have things sorted. This site documents what we’ve done and continue to do as well as the fun little details one might not encounter in a “normal” home setting.

About the Domain Name

Purgatory.org was originally Stega’s personal website that was re-appropriated when Agent Smith came up with the full name of our home. As such Stega now has a several other websites for her creative outlets and work.

If you were looking for stega’s personal site and random photography stuff, that’s now going on over at networkgirl.org plus stega.org is devoted to the wildlife here.

Abbreviations Used:

AS == Agent Smith
PO == Previous Owners
Birds/Boys == Tenar and Thy

See the Cast Page for more info.


Do you have livestock or plans for livestock?


What do you do with all that land?

Five years ago we had no set plans, but now we are focussed on getting native grasses and birds back. Much of our time during the first few years was spent cleaning up the messes and deferred maintenance issues left by the POs.  

We are now focussed on restoring more native grasses to encourage wildlife to visit and possibly live here.

Why did you buy something so crazy?
The short answer is: for the garage and pool.  But the longer answer is that we spent close to two years searching for a home outside of San Francisco and this place, even with all the faults left by the deferred maintenance of the previous owners, ticked all the boxes and then some.  Instead of just a great workshop and pool one can properly swim in, we got a totally unique home with incredible views, abundant wildlife, and our very own growing collection of life-sized Tonka Toys.

Last update 8/5/21

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