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Hermosa Pier

4 Sep

The night we arrived we managed to summon enough energy from the full moon to walk down to the Hermosa Beach Pier. Besides making movies, sunshine and leftover hippie vibrations, we came to LA for the fish tacos. We feasted our eyes on the beach and the tanned and nearly nude volleyball players. There were some crazy people, for sure, but unlike New York crazy people they were nice, and happy! They mumbled sweet gibberish to Yogi and winked at him as they meandered by with their 40oz in tow. Tiny children glided on skateboards and people ate dinner in board shorts, not suits. For 30 bucks we had 4 pints of Blue Moon and two huge supplies of the freshest fish tacos our taste buds could handle, while Yogi got love from nearly everyone who passed by on the streets.

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Driving into Los Angeles

3 Sep

As we drove West through the desert and the California foot hills I felt like a kid before the first day of school.
Excited. Apprehensive. Curious. I’ve lived in a variety of places, in a variety of countries but there is something powerful about arriving to your new home via a long road. There is a certain finality to it. Every other place had an expiration date tied to it, except for California.

We passed ghost towns and 50s diners but the highway continued to widen.
We got on Route 66 because that’s the only way to drive into LA but in my excitement we drove nearly an hour in the wrong direction. After a variety of hours and highways and on and off traffic we pulled over a hill in Hermosa beach and saw the Pacific Ocean. We opened the door to my car in my cousins driveway and we all rolled out with gumby legs.

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Buffalo Bills Casino (and “resort”)

2 Sep

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After the shimmering lights of Vegas, we road silently in the dark. The plan was to camp in the Mojave desert which meant we wouldn’t reach our campsite for another two hours and it was already dark. G stopped the car to pee and was flocked by a heard of Mosquitos that then lingered in the car for the next 20 minutes. We were slapping ourselves in the face when we passed a city called Primm, all aglow with neon casino signs and the artificial promise of- fun! Buffalo Bills casino advertised very cheap rooms and had a roller coaster on the roof. In a moment of weakness we decided we would camp in the Mojave another day. We ate sandwiches and drank our last bottle of wine on the bed as we watched all the news of the world we had been oblivious to
for the last two weeks. Yogi meanwhile, spent two hours sniffing the room, which I found a bit disconcerting. We woke up and walked to a gas station to get some coffee and realized that in a 24 hour town 8am was still the late shift. We decided we needed to get out of this town.

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Zion National Park

31 Aug

We drove through Zion National Park which was a pretty rock star sort of place. Would be fun to get lost there for a few days but they were dog discriminatory so we were restricted to the car. From Zion we drove south on highway 15 to leave Utah and briefly enter and exit Arizona (which incidentally turned out to be a rad drive).

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Sand Dunes

31 Aug

We climbed the coral dunes in the daylight and marveled at how exotic this landscape was. Kudos to the topographical diversity of America. Wow!! G tried to roll down the hill and got a mouth full of sand trying to amuse me.

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Animal foot prints

30 Aug

In the morning we woke up in the desert and found we were surrounded in little animal tracks that had been busy all night. I love that the ground is a critter playground even if there is only evidence left in the soft desert sand.

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Southern Utah

29 Aug

We woke up alive from the motel and hit scenic route 24 and onto 12. We ate at a surprisingly delicious and gorgeous roadside cafe called “El Diablo” that made posh Brooklyn food look silly. The waitress recommended a campsite called Calves Creek near Boulder (Utah). The drive in was so so beautiful. The best yet. We drove through Bryce Canyon. Red walls with white stripes and checker board sides. The campsite we went to was on a pretty little stream which provided a lush little landscape in the midst of the desert red rock. We watched bats swoop in the fading lilac sky as warm drafts of desert air rustled our tent.

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