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Happy trails

February 21, 2012

I have come to believe that Los Angeles keeps its traffic to prevent the rest of the world from moving there. It was sunny and 72 every day we were there. I couldn’t stop staring at the ocean. AJ has decided he wants to move there. I can’t imagine living there, but I could imagine staying a while.

Once the game show was out of the way, we did many touristy things including:

* A celebratory dinner in Venice Beach
* A visit to the Santa Monica Pier where we watched a trapeze school, stuck our toes in the ocean and ate hamburgers (the boys) and a fish sandwich (me) and had the best damn milkshake ever at the soda shop by the carousel.
* Window shopping at fancy stores in Santa Monica
* A visit to the Museum of Jurassic Technology which was completely fabulous read <a href=http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/10/arts/design/museum-of-jurrasic-technology-shows-its-wild-side-review.html>this if you want to know more about it (freshhell and lass, I was thinking about the two of you the entire time — there’s a whole exhibit devoted to trailer parks!)
* A misguided drive that ends at a fish taco place ten minutes from our hotel
* A visit to the spectacular Getty Villa
* Lunch oceanside at Gladstone’s in Malibu where we saw dolphins or possibly sharks (AJ said “I’m going to say they are sharks because I don’t know FOR SURE and I don’t really want to know”)
* A baseball game at Pepperdine, whose field has a view of the ocean
* A drive of less than 20 miles that took over three hours because we got caught in traffic exiting the Northern Trust Open
* Room service dinner, because we were not brave enough to face the traffic again
* A visit to the Getty Museum
* A walking tour of UCLA
* Lunch at In-and-Out burger in Westwood
* A hair-raising and spectacular drive on Mulholland Drive, with stops at several scenic overlooks
* A driving tour of Bel Air and West Hollywood
* Dinner at an Italian restaurant in Culver City (AJ’s choice)

(pictures may be forthcoming at a later date, but the computer with the photos is headed into the shop tomorrow for a new power cord, so is unusable at the moment)

I felt like I spent the whole week with a grin on my face. It is rare for us to all get along so well in close quarters. We are all solitary and we don’t always do well sharing a room. One thing that helped, I think, was the time zone shift. We were all up so early that Mr. Spy could get out for his run while AJ and I lounged around and we still were able to get out at an early hour.

And now I am back and enjoying my job again. I turned in several large things that had been hanging over my head today and I have now cleared the decks to work on a very big project that I’ve been trying to finish since November but have been too busy to put in the time. It feels luxurious to have time to think and write. I knocked off on time today and took AJ to School of Rock for his guitar lesson while I chatted with my former coworkers and got a free mini-mando lesson. We had pancakes for dinner in honor of Shrove Tuesday and ate while listening to Clifton Chenier spinning on the turntable in honor of Mardi Gras. After dinner, I pulled out my mandolin and finished my transcription of “Your Rocky Spine” by Great Lakes Swimmers and practiced it until my fingers couldn’t take it anymore, at which point I went up to AJ’s room and worked on the Rolling Stones’ “Satisfaction” on his electric guitar until he yelled at me to turn down the amp because it was too loud.

Kids.

I am attempting to get back in the swing of blogging, but my head is still spinning a little from the last week. If anyone has any burning questions they’d like answered, leave them in the comments. Perhaps it will inspire me to get back in the saddle.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. February 22, 2012 8:12 am

    I am proud of you for playing your music so loud your kid yelled at you to turn it down. And also for generally being a success and getting out of town.

  2. freshhell permalink
    February 22, 2012 8:46 am

    Trailer parks! Excellent.

  3. Cranky permalink
    February 22, 2012 9:01 am

    That is an ambitious list of sights that you saw. I can’t imagine seeing so many things in a short time. What a fun trip!

  4. February 22, 2012 12:20 pm

    I’ve eaten at Gladstones–food was decent and I loved the location. I’m so glad the week was restorative for you.

  5. February 23, 2012 10:41 pm

    Aaaaa! The Museum of Jurassic Technology! I have wanted to go there for so long.

    Your trip to LA sounds wonderful and I’m so happy you enjoyed LA! People, some people are so down on LA, but I love it, and am so glad you saw all that wonderful stuff!

  6. February 23, 2012 11:04 pm

    Violet, the funny thing is that before this whole game show thing happened, Mr. Spy had been talking about a long weekend in LA to escape winter and I put the kibosh on it. L.A. gets a bad rap and it’s easy to get sucked into it. But there is much to love. And we felt so in love with it, that when we got home we had a burning desire to watch movies about L.A. We started with L.A. Story. We weren’t ready to let the magic go. And the Museum of Jurassic Technology was super fantastic. And also, it was great to go there before hitting the two Getty museums. As the Times article said, it does make you think about the whole concept of a museum. There are a lot of videos of the museum on YouTube. This is one of my favorite things in the museum: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESOUPf3GUO4

  7. February 24, 2012 7:53 am

    I love the part about everyone having a big door in LA Story.

  8. February 24, 2012 10:05 am

    I associate LA with earthquakes, mud slides and shootings. I realize that this is not fair. One of these years I will need to have a trip like your and be proved wrong. 🙂

  9. February 26, 2012 3:04 pm

    You might should read Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder – it’s wonderful.

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