Avenue of the Stars

  The funny, rolling street known as Santa Monica Boulevard playfully stretches between the Pacific Ocean, and my destination, Century City. Century City, Avenue of the Stars. It sounds like a place in a Love and Rockets comic book, but this time around it's where Greg took the California Bar Exam.

Where Greg went every day.

The test was held over 3 days, so we both went and I had the pleasure of driving him to and from the Plaza Hotel each day. It really was a pleasure! The rental car was smooth and new, the road in the morning was deserted except for seagulls and palmtrees (and that ONE guy with the plastic bags wrapped around his bike and his head!) We stopped in Westwood for a coffee and a bagel before anyone else was up, and walked around amongst the huge jade plants and silent shops. It was postiively serene!

  Although the trip was peppered with some stress, it was also a lovely adventure by the sea. Our little 50's hotel The Bayside was beachfront. Literally steps from the water. And they provided beach towels and boogie boards for free! Waking to the California surf and gentle marine air every day is something I could get used to. We ate at nearby diners and beach restaurants. I took a short drive up PCH, without traffic, and breathed in that beloved scent of salt and eucalyptus trees.

The Bayside hotel

Now...for the coolest part! We visited our dear brother-in-law and master sculptor Chris Slatoff and his very handsome and sweet son James. Chris kindly showed us his ULTRA RAD art studio in Silverlake. It was filled with welders, spray painters, screen printers, model makers, carpenters, you name it. All working on amazing projects. Some for Disney, some for the Cartoon Network, many for movie sets, or videos. We saw props everywhere that had appeared in this or that spot or movie. It was a real treat to climb to the roof and admire the murals up there, and look at the california sage brush and palm trees filling the surrounding neighborhood. And once again, amidst the smell of spray paint and glue, there was that pervasive smell of a california canyon. Heat, eucalyptus, enormous prehistoric succulent plants. Incredible!

I love LA if you can't tell already. Coming back to Portland is always a relief with its beautiful, welcoming Mt. Hood and green trees. It's like drinking clean water getting out of the airport and breathing that air. But I still crave a little desert deep down. Desert by the sea. With spray paint.
Outside our little hotel

Local Chicken Shack (we didn't eat there, but it's cute)
Me and my darling 93 year-old grandma

Front of La Fonderie studio in Silverlake

Dean Styers

La Fonderie from the roof

Cute man on the roof

Gee, this is cool!

Dean Styer's rooftop mural

Roof top mural at La Fonderie

Chris in his studio working on a Christ figure

Chris and James

Greg is finished with the bar!!!


Bonnie Story said…
Wonderful! You do have a love of SoCal and it's great to see you there again. Best of luck with bar - you won't know for a while I'm sure but advance congrats!! Sending XXXOOO Bon