Good morning to you! Where ever in the world you are on this Monday, May 11, 2020. Yesterday, was Sunday and we took a ROAD TRIP!!! It’s been almost three months since I have been outside of the desert and even longer since I have seen my two older sons. Hubby took me on a special ride to do a “social distant” drive-by visit so I could see my boys. It was hard to not hug the crap out of them and to stay 6 feet apart but it was the best. I did get to squeeze the middle son ’cause he’s a ‘lil chip off me and he typically doesn’t GAF about what anyone thinks. Hopefully, this will be the last crisis of this magnitude in their lifetime, our lifetime. Their great-grandmother told them stories of the Great Depression and now they are about to see it in their world. I am really thankful for all the help that I have had in raising my kids as I reflect on Mother’s Day as it really did take a village.

Any trip out of the Coachella Valley is a gift and getting to see the ocean was like a fancy ribbon on top of the package. I did notice as we drove through the city that landscaping is considered non-essential and silently prayed for the coming fire season. The freeway landscaping, although it looked picture perfect with the overgrown brush and wildflowers, will become kindling in the summer if it is not tidied up soon. I guess it’s just me, being a Grama, and worrying…

This mural was created by artist Collette Millers

There were signs everywhere! Signs indicating that “Yes! We Are Open – For Take Out”. Closed signs. Along the drive, a freeway sign was lit up advising to “Avoid Gatherings Please stay home save lives. It gave me a chill when we passed a cemetery on the way home and seeing the hillside covered with families visiting the gravesides of their departed loved ones with lines of cars waiting to get inside. California just moved into Phase 2 of the “re-opening” process. Now to see what the numbers will look like in 5 days, the median average of incubation. I’m a numbers nerd so my fingers are crossed that the numbers decline or have leveled off. Fingers crossed that the numbers tell a great story with an even better ending.

The 10 Freeway was moving at normal speed limit, although it not an empty freeway. I was hoping that the day would have been sunny but really the grey clouds that hung of the area only added to the affect. If there were no Covid-19, an outside observer, may not notice that there was anything wrong going on in the world. However, as we drove through the streets of Venice, California you just knew something was no right.

I hadn’t been through Venice in a few years so not sure if this is normal?

As we drove down Venice Blvd, there were tents and makeshift encampments that lined the streets. It brought back memories of a Saturday in November when my sons and I volunteered at a Los Angeles Clippers event around 2009 to pass out food baskets and clothing. It was a day that my boys got to meets and work along side NBA basketball players as well as people of the Venice and Santa Monica community. My boys were excited because all the volunteers were treated to all the sodas and pizza they could eat and drink. Funny, me who takes tons of photos, was camera silent that day, although I do think there are a few photos from that day, somewhere. Sometimes, you have to be in the moment and snap that photograph in your mind.

Hubby took me down streets that he walked, skateboarded or drove down in his younger days. I got to learn more about him and hear “back in the day” stories that I LOVE! However, I quickly snapped out of it as we drove by the Santa Monica Pier. Miles and Miles of chain length fence lined the beach side of PCH and signs indicating closure.

I worked across from the Santa Monica Pier at a Lenscrafters in 1999 through 2001. Many times when I was sad, stressed out, didn’t want to go home and face whatever crisis was going on at home, I would go across to the Pier and play Skee-ball, with it use of community balls. How many hands have touched those little balls? I hope these things return as well so families and people like me, will have a place to go and have a fun or relieve stress. Really, Skee-ball is 9 balls of the best anti-depressant I ever took. After we left there Hubby took me to a “spot” that he said he used to go. I posted the video of the location to my IG story. Great view and place to steal a quick smooch or something like that…

This was shot from that spot with a prime 200mm.

After we left there he took me to another spot, Rustic Canyon. This little spot is a hidden gem that really should be left that way. I felt like I was an invader, well, I guess actually I was. Hubby knew that because of the pandemic, public restrooms were going to be non-existent. We prepared for the day accordingly and brought supplies. However, we did find a public restroom and did bring in our disinfectants and such. It really was funny when half the people at that park had on masks and half didn’t.

It was cool to see baseball fields that Hubby actually played on as a kid. He also spoke of other stories that I will leave there at that field that most teenagers have of secluded parks through out lands here in American and throughout the world.

We then drove back through Santa Monica before heading to Down Town Los Angeles for a quick drive through town. That was the fastest I have ever traveled on that stretch of the 10 freeway, ever!

Here are a few more of the sights we saw before we got to Los Angeles.

The drive from Santa Monica to Los Angeles was quick! I didn’t time it, but it was less than a L.A. “be there in ‘twenty‘” that took two hours. It was nice to be able to snap a few shots from the freeway as I was always driving when I lived in this area and could never take a photo going down the highway. At least I don’t remember ever doing it.

his is the Southbound ride heading toward Los Angeles and usually jammed with cars on the weekends.

We arrived in DTLA around 11:30 AM. We had been on our trip for almost three hours. I hopped out of the car a few times to snap photos of familiar sights in my mid 30’s and 40’s. Fondly, I remember working on the 9th floor at 400 South Hope St for PRG and stared at the US Bank building as I entered data into the computer. Also, the library is where I took my kids on the weekends as it was free and they did have a Panda Express inside. It truly is a special place for me as that was the first place that I lived and worked where I felt alone. Not alone in the way you are thinking. I was free or prying eyes and oppressive people in my life. I always felt like my life as it is now, began there, I started to develop who I was and am today.

I could have spent all day there but I was worn out. It was time to tap-out and say “Uncle!”Until next time Los Angeles, you will always be my home and I will always come home like a moths need to get to the light.

Our total trip was less than 6 hours start to finish. It was just what I needed and it will keep my creative juices flowing. I will be taking it easy for the next few days as I will need to recover from this little excursion but know that recovery time will not be as bad. We just got pool privileges back this past Friday and have already had my first work out! Time to get stronger, again. This week, I plan to work on the website to work out the bugs between WordPress and Vistaprint. This should be fun and should bring out my inner gangster…story to follow I am sure…

Thank you, dear reader for stopping by. I hope that you had relaxing weekend where ever in the world you were. To any of you out there traveling now that the Stay At Home Orders are being relaxed, if you are going somewhere, get there. Be safe and hugs!

9 Comments Add yours

  1. Timothy Price says:

    Interesting road trip. Since they closed the parks around here, there are more people on the ditch banks and in the bosque behind our property than there are on those CA beaches. Our interstates have those nanny “stay at home. Shop alone, Save lives.” signs. I find them extremely annoying. I’m starting to get emails from local businesses that say they have been given permission to reopen. We got a flyer from a business offering to come in and disinfect our business for a mere $2000. Yeah right. We already Lysol wipe things down when we come in and leave our office, and for businesses that have been sitting empty, what’s the point?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was interesting. It was sad, that was for sure. Our valley is on the brink every year and we get “saved” by the yearly festivals that now seem to not be happening in the near future.
      I am sorry to hear that you are a business owner during these times. It must suck that there are people out there trying to make money off of this misfortune, knowing that most businesses have had huge losses in revenue.
      Honestly, I cried several times during yesterdays trip. It was gloomy in the weather and the feeling. Even the people that we saw in the park were gloomy. Me, I try to only look for the positive, even as minute as it may be.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Timothy Price says:

        Fortunately, we are doing fine during this time. We have everyone working fulltime. Most staff work from home when they are not in the field. I go into the office two days a week, but next week I’ll start going in more often. Some of our staff have been going into the office most days. As things open up, we’ll still allow staff to work from home is they choose since some have kids at home and no school or day care availble.

        It’s really rough for musicians, concerts, festivals and anything that requires large gatherings of people.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That is good to hear! Your employees are fortunate that you are able to allow the flexibility. I can’t even imagine being in your shoes as a business owner with employees.

        My son was lucky as well and transitioned smoothly into working from home, although he does need a new computer.

        Yes, it is going to be rough for entertainers, unless you are already established. I see prohibition style gatherings in vacant warehouses or out in the desert happening in the future. Super secret shows that will not be made public or publicized on social media. Ooops, me and my romantic ideas…ha ha!!!

        Happy Tuesday!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. morishige says:

    Howdy! Thanks for the virtual tour. I really enjoyed reading your road trip to DTLA.

    It’s quite sad to see those tents. So surreal. We all are really struggling these days, aren’t we? Fortunately, we don’t have such view around here. (Perhaps there are many in big cities like Jakarta, but it seems to me that the media don’t care about them, as they rarely bother to report such reality.) Although many people have lost or are losing their jobs, they still have roof above their head.

    I saw the whole of your road trip video and I also love the photos. I saw the sign saying Ventura. Was that the Ventura Highway sung by America? πŸ˜€

    Have a wonderful day and stay safe πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, that is Ventura HIghway! That is the 101 Freeway North bound.

      You are welcome. Really, thank you for saying so! Yeah, I guess I am a tour guide, sort of, right. We all are when we are sharing. Just like you.

      Yes, it was very sad to see those tents. I cried several times during that trip. It was very sad. Many of the favorite Mom and Pop restaurants and shops of my old neighborhood were closed and will probably never reopen. Yeah, the media is too focused on our orange clown and his circus with his fairytales. SOrry! Don’t get me started. Yeah, many people here still have a roof above their heads but now the landlords are falling behind in their own mortgages. It’s a like a snowball, it starts small and then starts growing. Sorry again…I don’t get to talk to much around here about this stuff….

      Anyhow, be safe and well. Take care and hope that you will be able to visit California and drive up Ventura Highway.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. morishige says:

        Cool! Now I’m gonna have more vivid image when listening to Ventura Highway. πŸ˜€ The song is so outlandish, I love it.

        True. And I love this type of travel story, when I can see what the writer see, and think. (And I got to learn many things too.) That, for me, is what makes a story unique.

        Hahaha… Yeah. We can talk about it for hours. πŸ˜€

        Thank you! It’s gonna be awesome, driving up Ventura Highway while listening to Ventura Highway! πŸ˜€


      2. Yes that song is outlandish, now that I think about it, but it got the songwriters thoughts and story out in song.

        I used to worry what people (my friends and relatives) would think about my blog and my hobby now I don’t care. We really don’t go far from home it just seems like we do. It’s the way you tell the stories, right?

        Yes, I feel like I am talking to my son Karl. We used to talk for hours. He is the DGAF son! HA HA!! Yes, they were happy to see me.

        I can’t wait to see your adventure up Ventura Highway.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. morishige says:

        The songwriter must have had a leap of thought. I mean, it’s amazing from the intro πŸ˜€ There must be something on Ventura Highway. πŸ˜€

        So true. It’s just about how you tell the story, after all. Somehow, I often think that we’re going nowhere. We’re just wandering around our shared house; we never really leave the Earth.

        He’s a really cool dude, then. I hope you guys can see each other freely in the near future.

        Way to go! πŸ˜€


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