Month: June 2021

Left Overs

Some Farmers Market, I don’t remember where.

A few of Angela’s new house pictures from Instagram:

From D&A’s prior house, all those walls are painted the same color:

One of the Wednesday lunches with the kids. We each ordered a 3-plate and all got different things. What fun, so many tastes!

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Another one of our Wednesday activities, Lilly enjoying a photo shoot.

Getting Real

My first trip to the MOVIES. Oh my goodness. Marsha and I saw In The Heights. We were so excited. POPCORN was involved! Then the next day I saw a headline saying that with the new virulent spread of the delta variant we are once again advised to wear masks inside. SIGH!

MOVING

The trucks come tomorrow. WOW, right?! Lilly is marking her boxes “Front Bedroom”. It’s so exciting!

And here they are from Angela’s Instagram. These rooms are going to be so great.

Pancakes and More

I’ve been pining for pancakes at Du-Par’s for months and now I’ve had them and don’t need to have pancakes again for a good long time. Thanks Nancy for coming along!

No Whales Dolphins

SO many dolphins! Ken put this whole day together And he drove from the valley to pick me up and then on to Newport Beach. What a treat! It was billed as a whale watching tour. Nope on the whales but WOW on the dolphins!

It takes 30 minutes to get out of the harbor and 30 minutes back in where the engines are running quietly and the pace is easy-going but outside the harbor the boat is roaring along and the captain said the water was particularly rough. We had a lovely time, nice seats, fine weather, and we were both a-ok with the rock ‘n roll.
And gulls tailing the boat the whole way in and out.
Awww.
Then we walked for a couple miles through lovely residential neighborhoods to this cool restaurant set in a lighthouse, and then we walked back. Thanks Ken for a beautiful day!

(self-portrait)

Thank You Ladies

Ann and I share the June Birthday Extravaganza with the Ladies Who Lunch and what a good time we had! A delicious meal, rude cards, and cash. Just right!

me, Ann, Ljubica, Becky, Alicia, Maxine, Marija, Marsha

This is me and Ann from the previous week having enjoyed a refreshing swim in Ann’s pool. As summer wears on I expect to be enjoying that pool more often!

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(self-portrait)

A First Flush

Jo Ann and Muriel brought me a wonderful Birthday Breakfast, so good and just what I wanted. I wish I had remember to take our picture, adorable as we are.

A New National Holiday

And my birthday too! Cynthia treated me and Windy to a splendid sushi dinner. They kept an empty seat between the parties so it was all very comfortable and delicious. When I tried to pay for the ‘overs’ Ken, the owner and main sushi-man, said no no don’t worry your daughter said she wanted to pay for everything…which caused everyone at the sushi bar to ask about my daughter and why I was getting such a fine treat.  Many Happy Birthdays ensued. 

Before sushi we went for a stroll in Fern Dell, a part of Griffith Park we both remembered from our youth. We grew up in Hollywood so all the in-town venues were closer than the Westside where we live now.

They must do daily sweeps since there were no tents or even people sleeping on benches but the creek was not in good shape and the paths were stinky where clearly folks had spent the night. It wasn’t really this nice but I’m very glad to have had the chance to check it out.

Unlike the olden days when we used to walk up to the Observatory from Fern Dell…today we drove! That’s downtown in the distance.

I also had a fantastic moment in Parallel Parking. On my seventy-fourth birthday I made it into a spot with 1-2 feet clearance in ONE turn. It was a beautiful thing.

Persian Poetry Pals

..say Happy Birthday! (tomorrow…). Aren’t they adorable. Mehrzad, me, Victoria, Hilda, Luna. Judy didn’t make it today. These expressions say ’74?! That’s…well…old! Good for you!!’

I want to remember this exchange. Me: I remember when I wasn’t supposed to trust anyone over 30… Victoria: hey. wait!!!! if you can remember the 60’s, you weren’t there!! Me: Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself (I am large, I contain multitudes.) Walt Whitman.

(self-portrait)

School’s Out

Bonnie and I went to the Annenberg restaurant Back to the Beach for a late breakfast and a nice stroll.

It was something to see so many families out enjoying a day at the beach..in the middle of the day in the middle of the week on day two of the lifting of most of the mask mandates. Everyone was having so much fun it made me smile. And then we moved along down the shore where in a few minutes it was quiet. Why everyone was clumped together, I don’t know. I am expecting many many more people as the season moves along and more folks are out and about.

The Marion Davies House wasn’t open yet but there was a woman at the office who agreed to show us around since Bonnie had never been there before. A quick private tour, perfect! Here’s one of the bathrooms that’s usually unavailable to see.

Muriel and the Dinos

We had a good walk-about along the Promenade and then Palisades Park and then a surprisingly delightful meal at The Georgian hotel.

I realllly like the dinosaurs on the Promenade, and the jacarandas were feeling particularly perky too.

We do love those jacarandas, we do not love the mess…

Congratulations Lilly

Unlike the year before hers, Lilly got a ceremony at the school for her promotion from elementary to middle school. They did it outside with distancing and masks. Everyone was so happy to be out and many hugs ensued.

This is Lilly’s class, one of the four fourth grade classes.
Yay! For each class the teacher read a few sentences written by each student telling what their plans were for the future. Lilly intends to be an actress!
The Moms. I’m going to ask Angela for their names and the names of their kids. That’ll be fun!

We enjoyed a festive lunch for Lilly and her bff Roxie with Roxie’s family including My Friend PAULI who I haven’t seen in ages.

Those shirts have the name of the high school and on the back is the year of their high school graduation. They do this every year and the families so enjoy watching the kids grow into their shirts. ak.

Cute, right! There’s a picture of these four kids on every last-day-of-school since kindergarten. ak.

And here’s Rome messing around with the other kids for some photo-photo-fun. rk.

The school took these portraits of every graduate. I especially like Lilly’s hands here, holding her mask and her graduation certificate, an excellent summary of the 2020-2021 school year.

Bill and Cheryl Visiting From KC

The timing working out amazingly well since Bill and Cheryl had a few hours in the afternoon before their flight and I got home last night, so we got to enjoy each other’s company, the first time in, no surprise, So Long! I forgot to take a picture so here’s a selfie from the airport…

South on the 395 Lake Tahoe to LA

Mono-June-Mammoth Lakes, Manzanar, the Alabama Hills and various amazing landmarks.

SATURDAY June 5

Leaving California at the north end of Lake Tahoe I took a very short detour once in Nevada to have a roll through Carson City knowing I’d get the cheap gas and in hopes of seeing the capitol building. Thumbs up on both goals.

After I drove away I thought I should have parked and had a stroll. But it was Hot, so there’s that. wiki: “The city is in a high desert river valley approximately 4,802 feet with cold winters and hot summers.” Truly true.

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First stop, Mono Lake, from a view point off the highway.

It never hurts to try your Senior Lifetime Pass!

WIKI: “Mono Lake is a saline soda lake in Mono County, California, formed at least 760,000 years ago as a terminal lake in an endorheic basin. The lack of an outlet causes high levels of salts to accumulate in the lake and make its water alkaline.

“The desert lake has an unusually productive ecosystem based on brine shrimp, which thrive in its waters, and provides critical habitat for two million annual migratory birds that feed on the shrimp and alkali flies.  Historically, the native Kutzadika’a people ate the alkali flies’ pupae, which live in the shallow waters around the edge of the lake.

“When the city of Los Angeles diverted water from the freshwater streams flowing into the lake, it lowered the lake level, which imperiled the migratory birds. The Mono Lake Committee formed in response and won a legal battle that forced Los Angeles to partially replenish the lake level.”

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I couldn’t get the good picture, I’m there at noon, I’m sweltering, and oooh the stink and the flies…

This is a good discussion of the Tufa Towers.

And here’s a little excerpt: “All tufa at Mono Lake forms underwater. Beneath Mono Lake, calcium-rich freshwater springs seep up from the lake bottom and mix with lake water rich in carbonates (think baking soda). As the calcium comes in contact with the carbonates in the lake, a chemical reaction occurs, resulting in calcium carbonate, or limestone. The calcium carbonate precipitates (settles out of solution as a solid) around the spring, and over the course of decades to centuries, a tufa tower will grow. Tufa towers can grow to heights of over 30 feet underwater.”

It was at this point, after an hour in the blazing baking burning blinding sun, when I couldn’t complete the walk because of the heat, (YAY I turned back in time!) that I decided to absolutely drink more water. The gang at Lake Tahoe, each one separately and often together urged me to drink more water. Drink More Water. Fine.

Not my pictures: Grant Lake with a small cabin complex and accessible beaches; June Lake that I remember as a beautiful and peaceful alpine retreat was none of those things; one of the Mammoth Lakes that I never found.

SUNDAY June 6

I left the Mammoth area around noon having spent the morning trying to get through the Lake Tahoe pictures and then decided on a visit to Manzanar.

Both Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams spent many months at war-time Manzanar making photographs with very different outcomes. They both worked under strict regulations, no photos of barbed wire or guard towers or military police or anything negative really. Lange was first and from what I read much more gritty and also censored whereas Adams’ work was widely criticized for being simple propaganda.

I got all these off the internet of course, and here is an article I found particularly interesting about “How the Photography of Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams Told the Story of Japanese American Internment”.

This photo’s caption from the link above:

“Dorothea Lange, “Manzanar, California, Dust storm at this War Relocation Authority center where evacuees of Japanese ancestry are spending the duration” (July 3, 1942). The area was subject to extreme seasonal temperatures, with dust a constant presence due to the high winds. Incarcerees often awoke mornings covered in a layer of it. (photographed by Dorothea Lange for the WRA, courtesy the National Archives [Archives Identifier 539961])”

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Having several times visited the very extensive exhibitions at the Japanese American National Museum in downtown LA I wasn’t particularly anxious for more Manzanar but actually I’m glad I went.

The visitor’s center was closed but the driving-around tour was open and you could get out along the way. It was standing there that was so physically overwhelming much like the photo above – so hot with a furious hot dusty wind and I got a more visceral feeling for the enormous scale of the place (only 5th in population size of the 10 internment camps).

It looks mostly like this now, with a very few buildings, mostly desert and signs about what was there during the war.

Instead of trying for the Alabama Hills this afternoon I decided to check into my motel in Lone Pine and find a nice big western dinner, full service, wine, lots of courses.

And I did. And these walls? There were more!

MONDAY June 7

The last leg of the trip, before home sweet home tonight. But first I want to take a spin through the Bureau of Land Management recreation area called The Alabama Hills, but first before that, I missed the turn off and ended up at the Mount Whitney trailhead!

UpUPUP. I knew at about 7,000 feet that I had made a mistake but why not follow it through to the 8,600 feet trailhead. I left the motel at 5:30am (that’s right, HEAT) so when I got up there it was still early enough to see Hearty Youth packed up for the assent to 14,500 feet.

On the way down I found the turnoff and spent some time admiring the formations of the Alabama Hills.

“The Alabama Hills are a formation of rounded rocks and eroded hills set between the jagged peaks of the Sierra Nevada and the geologically complex Inyo Mountains. Both geologic features were shaped by the same uplifting occurring 100 million years ago. Visitors enjoy touring film sites, photography, rock climbing, exploring natural arches, and viewing the swaths of wildflowers that bloom every spring. Horseback riding and mountain biking are popular activities.”

And after 5 stops to pee (remember? Drink More Water?) I was Home Sweet Home!

Lake Tahoe

The gang from my visit to Sweden reassembled itself here in Lake Tahoe! Jim, Baby, Rick, Lill, Tony. They drew that dog ‘tattoo’ on their arms to send to a friend who, during a game of Pictionary, drew this very dog for a dog…and will never Ever live it down.

WEDNESDAY June 2

I arrived from Sacramento just in time to join in for a late lunch and then we went to the nearby town of Tahoe City. As well as shops and restaurants, they have a nice public beach there and a very nice walking path.

Later in the evening we went down to the private beach connected to the complex where we were staying at Dollar Point.

The dock above belongs to the next door complex. I seem to have missed a picture of our beach I guess because I got too excited over this bird. ND found it on the internet, a sweet little Barn Swallow.

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THURSDAY June 3

We left early to visit Virginia City, Nevada. These pictures are all from the internet because there were so many people and so many cars I wasn’t happy with any of my own. Virginia City was developed overnight in 1859 with the great silver discovery of the Comstock Lode and now it’s a full-on tourist town. Not like Colonial Lynchburg for example because the refurbishment efforts have been minimal which added to the charm (although I should note that all the trumpiness did give me a bit of a shiver).

This is the larger of the two, the Catholic church that is in good enough condition and open for services and visitors.
The Episcopal church on the other hand was in very bad shape and they were not able to hold services in the main areas but they did have a little rec room space on the floor below, with 10 chairs and a microphone. The church was actually closed, but Rick and I lucked out in that a woman with a key was puttering around outside and she let us in.
After visiting Virginia City (and it was HOT btw) Rick drove me and Baby back ‘the long way’ so we could get a feel for South Lake Tahoe (we are north on the California side in the quieter area), and catch a glimpse of Emerald Bay.

Evening fun!

FRIDAY June 4

For orientation, notice the dotted line that separates California and Nevada.

We did two easy walks in the morning, chosen for me I’m sure because Rick, Jim, Lill, and Tony are Hikers: big boots, two walking poles, quarts of water, see you in several hours.

First stop, a lovely meadow boardwalk.

From Rick on his phone, ‘so I can get a picture of me right away!’
Snow balls!
Tony and one of his many entertaining shirts.

And our second walk was at Sand Harbor – Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park | State Parks. It was such a pretty public beach area although I can imagine it getting crowded beyond enjoyment.