Hiking in the Sun

Monday, December 3rd, 2007

On Saturday, I arrived in Los Angeles again for the filming of two commercials. There was actual work to do Saturday, but Sunday was completely free (as it should be). I met up with C., M., R, and M’s cousin E. for a hike up the hills above Pasadena to the ruins of a resort called “White City.” I hadn’t been in this part of LA since graduation, and a trickle of memories came from seeing the physical place. Everything was reprocessed through happy eyes this time. It’s hard to imagine how unhappy I was living there; I used to think that it was more than being young, poor and lonely. But stripping away those burdens from the place makes it seem livable. It’s wasn’t LA’s fault. Dammit.

The hike lasted 3 hours. The air clear and cool. It was a perfect ascension. Some photos:

A tree leaning over the switchback trails up the hill.

A conspicuously barren hillside with a covered reservoir below. Working theory: The structure is actually a missile silo that chars the the plants during launch.

Cable car apparatus in ruin at the top of the hike.

C. committing suicide from the cable car platform.

Signs describing what used to lie under foot.

Old foundation and reservoir pit.

Shadow casting.

Hiding in the grasses.

Our guide dog.

Me, overlooking my old kingdom. If you look closely, you can see downtown and the ocean in the distance.

Descending.

Large growth of old cacti.

C.’s old Honda has an apple core fused to its bumper. It doesn’t even fall off while riding on the freeway.

Bird of Paradise outside the fence to the old house I lived in in Altadena.

The same house, painted a different color but still huge.

At C.’s house, we tried out his recently acquired push mower.

The back wall of his mansion. We went inside and played a little guitar and drums before going to meet M. for a tasty French dinner in the Eagle Rock area. Afterward, I was slaughtered playing a well worn game of Settlers of Catan.

The 10 freeway on the way back to the hotel in Santa Monica after a wonderful day.

I’m nervous, but I hope the shoots go well this week.

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