4.13.2007

the rest of the trip

On Wednesday I hung around the house while AWE got some work done at her office. I had a long walk with the wonderful Casey, their pit/lab-mix puppy. She is endlessly affectionate and so well behaved. We seriously bonded while I was out there.

On our walk, everything was warm, sunny and green. The neighbourhood is largely senior, and Asian, and everyone was out gardening. It was a lovely suburban picture, but all the green and the lawn-watering was a little shocking. It's hard not to think of the consumption, and the indulgence, and that one day watered lawns will seem as ridiculous as unrecycled garbage.

When AWE came home, we went to Huntington Library, an estate with incredible botantical gardens. These were unlike any botantical gardens I've ever seen, as it was almost all cacti, succulents and other desert fauna. (There are also famous Japanese gardens and waterfalls, but those were closed for renovations.) There's a huge variety of cacti and desert plants, ingeniously arranged for maximum effect. Many were bizarre looking, other worldly. AWE commented that their shapes have been used by set designers for monsters on stage and screen. I took a ton of photos; if anything came out decently I'll post some. (I've also added a few links to pictures at my previous L.A. post.) The gardens were spectacular, and so unusual.

On the way home we passed an In-N-Out Burger, and my friend realized I had to have one before going home. So we did that on the way to the Dodgers game. Wow! They're amazing. Fresh, hot, real food: they're exactly what fast-food burgers and fries should be like, but never are. I have about one cheeseburger a year, and this was definitely the way to do it. I don't know how I've missed In-N-Out on previous west coast trips, but now any time I'm in the area, I will have to have one.

Dodger Stadium was exactly as I remembered, but better, as it's been restored since I was there in 2002. The new management wisely retained the early-1960s style, which is now beautifully retro, and added period-style touches that manage to seem authentic and not cutesy. It's also a downtown (as opposed to suburban) park, which rates highly with me. Dodger Stadium is famously situated in Chavez Ravine, with the mountains as backdrop beyond the outfield. And of course the crisp, barely-cool night weather could not be more perfect for baseball. It's really a little slice of baseball heaven.

I booed Luis Gonzalez (Yankees grudge), BOOED Gump (Red Sox grudge) and cheered for Nomar (Red Sox old family). The Dodger crowd is vocal and demonstrative, and way into baseball; they put the red-wearing Angels crowd to shame. Well, except for the mass exodus in the 6th and 7th innings, a SoCal tradition. We saw a quick 3-0 Dodger win.

My flight home yesterday was easy and on-time. It was so good to see Allan and the girls. I missed them! This morning I was happy to walk Cody and Tala, and I'm happy to be blogging from my own desk.

I have a ton of stuff to go through and possibly post, so there might be a small wtmc deluge later today.

7 comments:

David Cho said...

I was gonna tell you about Huntington Library!

That was my mother's favorite destination whenever she had guests from Korea to entertain.

David Cho said...

Hey whatever happened to the Woody Guthrie pic?

L-girl said...

Hey whatever happened to the Woody Guthrie pic?

Scroll all the way down. My man Woody should still be there.

His machine killed fascists, ours does too. :)

David Cho said...

Ah...I didn't scroll down enough.

Oh you hit on something

It was a lovely suburban picture, but all the green and the lawn-watering was a little shocking.

I SO AGREE WITH YOU. The large front lawn thing has always bothered me. Who came up with that architecture? My home is just like that, but you really have no choice if you want a single family detached home.

The front lawn serves no functional purpose other than a large green area for "curb appeal." It isn't safe for kids to play, so what exactly does it do? I would much rather have a big backyard for Noah. And you are right. All that wasted water.

L-girl said...

It isn't safe for kids to play, so what exactly does it do?

Does anyone fence it in for their kids and dogs? Or is that "not done"?

And you are right. All that wasted water.

I think eventually North Americans will have to give up the idea of lawn altogether. We'll have to garden what grows naturally and when it doesn't rain, things will dry up. The world is dying of thirst and we are watering artificial bits of nature.

David Cho said...

Does anyone fence it in for their kids and dogs? Or is that "not done"?

Some do it, but it is usually frowned upon, so you don't see it very often. Besides, it isn't very practical because of the driveway.

L-girl said...

I thought it might be frowned upon. Lots of people with kids and dogs do it here. You just put the fence on one side of the driveway. It's not very esthetic, but you can grow hedges or vines or trees against the fence - and it's so much safer for your family. But I didn't see anyone with a fenced-in front yard in this area.