Friday, March 30, 2018

An evening walk

Rio Hondo riverbed bike trail

Beautiful weather, later's time again to take walks after work along our Downey riverbeds. My favorite is the Rio Hondo riverbed, which has bike and walking trails along both sides. I wasn't the only one enjoying the time, as this father and son pair of cyclists show.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Holy Week around the world


This is Holy Week in the Christian year. Christians all over the world are celebrating the death and resurrection of their Savior, Jesus. This is the cathedral in Montreal, Canada. Tomorrow, Friday, this sanctuary will be filled with worshippers remembering the sacrifice that Jesus gave for the whole world. On Sunday, Easter, the faithful will celebrate the resurrection of Jesus.


This is God the Father giving God the Son His crown after His resurrection and ascension into heaven.


This is the sanctuary of St. George Greek Orthodox Church here in Downey. It too will be filled with worshipers this Friday and Sunday.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Dinner before the theater

Ruby's diner

This last Sunday, a group of us went to the Cinemark Theater in the Downey Promenade for some afternoon entertainment. We stopped at Ruby's Diner for a delicious hamburger before the show. We ate out on their patio to take in the beautiful sky and to watch the passers-by. Stop by Ruby's and have a leisurely Sunday lunch some time.

"The sky is an infinite movie to me. I never get tired of looking at what's happening up there."
~ K. D. Lang

Tuesday, March 27, 2018



Wilderness Park has electrical power line transmission towers along the border areas of the park.

20180225_105650-1_2I think these power towers are so interesting to look at. Looking straight up from below, it almost looks like a spider web. I like the angles and the intersecting lines.

And, when you look up close, you can see the sharp, spiky metal pieces that have been added. I assume they are to keep people from climbing up.

"We believe that electricity exists, because the electric company keeps sending us bills for it, but we cannot figure out how it travels inside wires. " 
~ Dave Barry

Monday, March 26, 2018


Bike lane in Downey

The recent resurfacing of Brookshire Ave. introduced bike lanes to Downey. But I've been puzzling about the different options, so I did some googling and learned a new word.

Bike lane in DowneyA desigated bike lane is indicated by a solid white line and a bike symbol, like the picture to the right. You can't drive in a designated bike lane. But what about when there is a bike symbol in the middle of what looks like a regular car lane, like the picture at top?

It turns out that these are lanes that are shared by both cars and bikes. Those bike symbols with the chevron-shaped lines on top are called sharrows. Sharrows are used to alert other traffic that bicyclists are allowed to occupy this travel lane. I think this is still a little confusing, because technically bicyclists can share the right lane even if it's not marked with a sharrow. But I guess it serves as a reminder to be especially watchful for bikes on this street.

So, to sum up. You can drive—carefully— in the lanes with the sharrows. In a designated bike lane, follow these rules:
  • Do not drive in a bicycle lane unless you are preparing to make a right turn or park.
  • Before merging into the bicycle lane, check to see there are no bicyclists.
  • If you are passing bicycle traffic, pass with at least 3 feet between your vehicle and the bicyclist, when safe to do so.
  • When making a right turn, enter the bicycle lane no more than 200 feet before the corner or other driveway entrance. Do not drive in the bicycle lane at any other time.
 And even if there isn't a bike lane, watch out for bikes.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Wintry landscape


Although Downey is in moderate—normally sunny—southern California, here you can see the trees in the northeast corner of Furman Park looking very naked and wintry. All this fits with the cold, rainy weather we have had in the last couple of weeks.

These trees are part of the Memorial Grove planted here by the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution). You can see more in this DDP post.

"Trees are poems that the earth writes upon the sky.”
~ Kahlil Gibran

Coming soon!

Starbuck's coming

They're everywhere! But that doesn't mean I'm not happy to see this Starbucks rising from the parking lot within walking distance of my house. It's just far enough to help me resist the temptation to go too often. And it's just far enough to be a good walk to balance my morning snack.

"I saw a guy at Starbucks yesterday. No iPhone, no tablet, no laptop. He just sat there drinking coffee, like a psychopath."

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Today's rain clouds


One of the great advantages of living in Downey is our rain. First, our rain is typically a soft rainfall that's actually fun to walk through. The rain usually soaks into the ground to replenish our city's underground wells or is channeled into the sewer system to be returned to the ocean.

Second, the rain usually only lasts a day or two. Then the sun will break through to give us beautiful blue skies with a few puffy white clouds. My weather app says today's rain will be done by 7 am tomorrow and then we'll have partly cloudy skies for the remainder of the day. What a great place to live.

"Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet." 
~ Roger Miller

Wednesday, March 21, 2018


Close to you

My wife and I often walk down this portion of 5th Street between Downey Ave and Brookshire. These two apartment buildings bring back memories of days when "Close to You" and "Only Just Begun" were hits on my AM radio.

Only just begun

The musical group, The Carpenters, were "the biggest selling group of the 70's." You can read more of their bio here. The Downey Library also has a permanent display of the Carpenters' music on display in the library's foyer.

What memories of the Carpenters do you have?

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Downtown view


I love that we are surrounded by beauty and we just we have to look for it.

I walked through downtown this weekend when the weather was blustery and a little dramatic. I looked up and saw the puffy clouds hovering over St. George Greek Orthodox Church. It reminded me how beautiful changing weather can be.

 "The sky is the daily bread of the eyes." 
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, March 19, 2018


Window panes

When I travel, I like to take pictures of abandoned buildings. Often, the window panes can take on a look of abstract art. In this case, the building here in Downey's industrial district isn't really abandoned. But the effect is still there.

"There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterward you can remove all traces of reality."
~ Pablo Picasso

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Celebrate the luck of the Irish


Music, dancing and a whole lot of green...that and more will be happening tonight at Joseph's Grill in downtown Downey. I spoke with one of the managers this afternoon and he listed off an amazing number of performances and events going on in celebration of Saint Paddy's Day this evening.



“Yeah, it's St. Paddy's Day. Everyone's Irish tonight."
~ quote from the Boondock Saints

Friday, March 16, 2018

Look at me!

Sunset at Furman Park

Sometimes the day ends quietly. And sometimes it ends with a loud "look at me!" that you just can't ignore. This end-of-day from a couple of weeks ago was one of those. I had to stop what I was doing to marvel at the colors and beauty.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Humans of Downey/New Orleans - Michael

Michael with Chase and Cody

"I am the same as everyone else because I want to get along with everyone else. I see everyone as people and I want them to see me as people.

"I'm unique in that I have always been a hard worker. It started with how my parents raised me. I never missed a day of work. When I played sports in school, I played my best or I didn't play. When I graduated and went out into the world to work, I did my best or I didn't do it.

"My mom was a hard worker. I grew up on a farm and my mom was always working until the job was done. If the weather was harsh or she had an ache or two, she still finished the job. She taught me to give it my all."

~ Michael

(Posted by Pam on Steve's behalf.)

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Two cool

Chase and Cody

I'm on vacation this week traveling across the United States on Hwy 10. We are going all the way to Florida, but we have stopped in New Orleans to see some sights. We came across these two classy-looking dogs in a square in front of the St. Louis Cathedral.

Their names are Chase and Cody. Chase is 9 months and Cody is 9 years. They are owned by Michael and Sue from Iowa. They spend the winter in New Orleans each year. Cody is a registered therapy dog. Michael takes him to the local Children's Hospital to be with the children.

(Posted by Pam on Steve's behalf.)

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

After the storm


The rain had stopped for a short time, so I headed out for a walk. The sky was dramatic with storm clouds still off in the distance, but some bright sunlight was starting to break through the clouds above. All in all, it made for a beautiful, dramatic morning walk.

"I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day."
~ E. B. White

Monday, March 12, 2018

Your time will come

Furman Park exercise

I've shown these scenes many times before, but the difference today is that it's the first weeknight this year with the extra hour of daylight after work. Everyone, kids and adults alike, were enjoying the extra daylight.

Furman Park kidsI love the transition to daylight saving time, and I used to assume that everyone else did too. Sure, for the short term, you give up an hour of sleep, but the extra hour in the evening is worth it to me.

But it turns out there are strong feelings on both sides of the issue. Florida has recently proposed extending daylight saving time year round. Hawaii and Arizona opt out. Massachusetts is considering moving out of the Eastern time zone and into the Atlantic time zone. Of course, neither Florida nor Massachusetts have the authority to make those changes, since our time zones are controlled by the federal government. Pretty confusing!

"There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do the most important thing."
~ Brian Tracy

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Hot dog


On a rainy Saturday night, I was not the only one who wanted a quick dinner from Pete's Burgers. I didn't anticipate the long line of cars I would have to wait behind. However, I decided a chili dog was the perfect comfort food for a chilly evening. Kind of a perfect way to end our week-long focus on dogs!


Friday, March 9, 2018

What the dog sells

Stonewood kid's rideStonewood gelato

Who can resist a cute doggy face? Whether it's Goofy on top of the gelato at Stonewood Center, or just a kid's ride with a goofy blue dog, images of dogs help sell products. (Remember Subaru's "Dog tested. Dog approved." marketing campaign from a few years ago?)

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Humans of Downey - Shannon


"I am the same as everyone else in that community is very important to me. I'm involved in school. I'm involved in sports. I play catcher on our school's softball team. I'm the same as all my teammates. We bond as a team not only in practices but by having social times together away from the field.

"I'm different from others because I'm not a follower. Two of my friends and I were supposed to go to the mall but one of them said she was going to the park and smoke weed. I told my other friend that if she wanted to go with her that was her choice but I was going to the mall like we said. My convictions are important to me and if I have to be alone while standing for those convictions then so be it.

"My uncle had a dog, Emma, she's a pit bull. When I was younger, she was very protective. I lived at my grandma's and if any of the kids would yell at me she would bark at them and protect me."

~ Shannon

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Humans of Downey - Joshua


Continuing with the theme of "dogs," I visited the Lazy Dog restaurant in Downey. It has a welcoming policy to dogs and their owners. They both can eat out on the patio. There I met Joshua, Shannon, and Bullet. Shannon will be my post for tomorrow.

"I'm still in high school and I'm just like everybody else there. I'm just doing what I need to do to graduate and then get a job. I'm trying to make these school days the best they can be. I show up and I study enough to get by.

"When I was about 15, my grandpa passed away. He was my best friend and it was hard getting through not having him around any more. I have this tattoo that says Grandpa Jim on my arm. To get through my grief, I was doing a few things I shouldn't have been doing. Then I met Shannon. She helped me focus on what I need to do in life to get back on track. That sets me apart from others. Not everyone has someone come alongside them to help them stay focused.

"Recently, I wanted a dog and in particular I wanted a pit bull. It didn't work out though, so Shannon surprised me with this German Shepherd/Boxer mix puppy. I fell in love with him the first time I saw him. We call him Bullet."

~ Joshua

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

As sick as a dog...doggy sick choose!


I'm not sure what this dog was doing in the gutter, but he did not look good. I came across him on a walk recently and it was such an odd sight, I had to take his picture. There are a lot of dog phrases that could relate to this image and I had a tough time deciding which to use, so I kind of used them all. I guess I could end this with "Let sleeping dogs lie..." He is definitely not a lucky dog.

Okay, I'm going to stop now.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Dogs of Downey - Bailey and Nala

Bailey and Nala at the dog parkBailey and Nala at the dog park

This week at Downey Daily, we're going to the dogs. I stopped by the dog park at Rio San Gabriel Park this evening and was rewarded with the sight of my favorite breed, a couple of Siberian Huskies.

Bailey, a 7-year-old black-and-white, and her daughter Nala belong to Lorenzo, who lives nearby. Both dogs were having a blast playing with the other dogs at the park.

Bailey and Nala at the dog park

Bailey and Nala at the dog park

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Puddles in the park


This morning there were numerous puddles in the park from the rain we had yesterday and last night. It made for some fun reflections.


"Rain is grace; rain is the sky descending to the earth; without rain, there would be no life."
~ John Updike

Friday, March 2, 2018

Surface runoff

Rain runoff

Speaking of water...we're in the midst of a rainstorm here in southern California.

Rain runoffRain in the city means a lot of surface runoff, which occurs when rain comes down faster than the soil can absorb it. This occurs more often in cities because of all the roofs and pavement that funnel the water where it can't be absorbed. In fact, surface runoff in the city is a primary cause of flooding.

So where does all this water go? Except for specially designed soak areas like I showed last week, most of it just flows down the drain and back into the ocean instead of back into our groundwater supply.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Jump in, the water's fine


This is a small portion of the pool at Downey High School Aquatic Center on Brookshire Blvd. It is home to the Downey High School swim team and water polo team and the Downey Dolphins swim club. It is also the pool that the city uses for summer swim time that is open to the public.


They just happened to be having a swim meet at the same time I came by to take a shot of the pool.