Monday, May 21, 2018

The LAIR

LA Zoo LAIR

Recently, I visited the Los Angeles Zoo at Griffith Park. It's been a while since I've been, and this is the first time I've seen the completely refurbished LAIR (Living Amphibians, Invertebrated, and Reptiles) exhibit. As an added bonus, I got to see it through the eyes of a couple of small boys who were fascinated by every swimming, crawling, slithering creature!

The Zoo is only 20 miles from Downey, and they offer an affordable family season pass. Check it out this summer if you have the chance.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Rancho's past

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The south campus of Rancho Los Amigos is an odd reminder of Downey's past that has been locked up for years now. While you can still drive through the main section from Imperial to Gardemdale, the major portion of the property remains fenced off from the curious—which includes me.

I have heard for years that the county has plans for the property, but have yet to see any indication of that. I have, however, hoped for years to have the opportunity to photograph the buildings that remain.

"You have to know the past to understand the future" 
~ Carl Sagen

Friday, May 18, 2018

Bon voyage

Mimi's hot chocolate

Steve and his wife Bonnie are heading off to France tomorrow, visiting many of the same places that Joan and I saw just a couple of weeks ago. So we met at Mimi's tonight to share some information and tips, over a cup of hot chocolate with an extra portion of whipped cream.

"I love days when my only problem is coffee or chocolate."

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Humans of Downey - Carla

HoD Carla

"In tenth grade, our history teacher took our class to the House of Blues in Hollywood. There was an incredible amount of art work being displayed. What caught my attention was an exhibit that featured a lot of human skulls. They were distributed all over the House of Blues on different pieces of furniture. I remember the reason why the artist chose to display skulls in so many areas and in so many different mediums. The skull is universal. Everyone has one. That stuck with me ever since that field trip. It reminds me that I have that in common with everybody else. We all have a skull. As I remember that, it reminds me that we are all alike and yet different.

"Since I was a little girl, I've been told that I was the type of kid that marched to the beat of their own drum. I was always doing something different than my peers. In grade school, when the other girls were playing with their dolls and playing house during play time, I was coloring or doing other art activities. I was really drawn to art. At home, I played office. I played with papers, staplers, and other office supplies. My parents were small business owners. After school, I would spend most of my time at the office, helping out. I got to play with all the office supplies. My dad was in construction so I got to play with tools and other home improvement items that probably weren't safe for a child my age to play with—but I did it anyway.

"I believe the model I saw at home, my mother being a working parent, gave me the foundation and courage to make my own choices in life. Although she could have chosen to stay home, she chose to support my dad in his business. She would take me along on business trips so I was always on the go. That was my upbringing and it has made me the unique person I am today."

~ Carla

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Tierra Luna

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These are the last few acres of the immense land given to Downey when Boeing closed their plant in Downey. The first half of the land became Downey Landing. A giant parking lot surrounded by stores and restaurants. Now the other half has become the Promenade, Downey. This time it is a giant parking lot dotted with shops and restaurants.

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The definition of a promenade is, 1. "A leisurely walk, or sometimes a ride or drive, taken in a public place so as to meet or be seen by others." 2. "The place where one would take the leisurely walk". There is nowhere in the Downey Promenade to take a leisurely walk. When you sit at Panera's to have a leisurely meal and look out on the lovely landscape, all you see is a parking lot.

Promenade in Paris

This is a promenade. Let us hope that the plans for the rest of Tierra Luna (Promenade) will not look like the current lunar landscape but instead, a beautiful park-like area to take a leisurely walk and meet others doing the same.

"The promenade is a special subset of walking." 
~ Rebecca Solnit

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Do you know the ice cream man?

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I didn't know we still had an ice cream man that comes through the neighborhood. Tonight I chased him down and I wasn't the only one. These kids made sure he not only stopped, but he actually backed up to us.

"Without ice cream, there would be darkness and chaos". 
~ Don Kardong

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Monday, May 14, 2018

Lilies of the field

PIH construction

Construction has been going on at PIH Health Hospital since 2016 when ground was broken on a major expansion of the emergency department. Progress is being made, and there's a lot less scaffolding visible these days.

Yellow liliesBut what really catches my eye when I drive past (aside from the missing letter in the sign that makes me think for a moment that I am back at the River Rance in France) is the awesome field of golden lilies out front. Especially in the glow of the late afternoon sun.

"Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: yet I say to you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."
~ Matthew 6:28-29

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Late in the day

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The afternoon sun always seems to put such a nice glow on everything. Looking out over the park grounds this afternoon, with the long shadows falling, seems like a fitting end to the day.

"We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open." 
~  Jawaharlal Nehru