Rain!

Trip Start Dec 27, 2012
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2
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Trip End Jan 06, 2013


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Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, December 29, 2012

I got up early as my body clock hadn't fully adjusted to LA time, and took advantage of the excellent wi-fi in the flat to catch up on email, etc. After a bit there was a HUGE rumble in the distance. I looked out of the window, and noticed birds circling in the sky above - they were clearly startled, too! Nothing else seemed amiss, though - except the rather grey early morning clouds, so I went back to the laptop....only for the rumble to repeat. A brief conversation with Juliette the day before popped into my head - namely that their new flat was directly over the fault line! Fortunately, however, the answer to the rumbling revealed itself a few minutes later when the heavens opened, and it started to rain. I realise mistaking a few claps of thunder for an earthquake is a little embarrassing, but the rumbles were NOT like English thunder!

Fortunately our plans for Saturday involved predominantly indoor activities, as we had arranged to go to downtown LA and visit the MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art), and have a wander around the central area. There is a temporary exhibition at the MOCA called "Destroy the picture" which Juliette was keen to see, and both Lydia and Olivia were very happy to tag along with the adults. The MOCA was smaller than I had expected, but contained a sufficient number of impenetrable works to get the brain cells working overdrive. The temporary exhibition was, however, the highlight, even though I was reprimanded by one of the staff for taking a photo. I particularly liked the "ripped paper" pieces by a Japanese artist called Murakami.....basically the "project" (as he called it) involved stretching a large piece of brown paper over a wooden frame, and then breaking through it in a theatrical manner. Unfortunately the gallery only had the resulting ripped paper, there was no "live performance" of paper ripping!! 

We had planned to join one of the museum's guided tours to aid our understanding of the key works, but as 1pm approached we realised we were all very hungry, so we repaired to the California Kitchen (i.e., a pizza restaurant) for Lunch. Being the USA, the pizzas were enormous, there were free re-fills of lemonade, the service was amazing, and the whole thing incredibly good value. Suitably fortified, we decided to skip the guided tour, and make our way to the Geffen (a sister gallery to MOCA in an edgier part of downtown), which turned out to be much bigger, and much better than MOCA...

This time we DID join the guided tour, led by a lovely old lady in a red jumper, who insisted on asking questions of our little tour group, which we invariably couldn't answer! After the tour we spent time in a fascinating photographic exhibition (in the same building). It was a huge collection of portraits, divided by themes, but designed to show the links between different generations. The photographer had spent many years travelling the world to record the various family groups, with such diverse subjects as an Indian man whose land had been appropriated after the title deeds recorded him as dead, and the body double of one of Saddam Hussain's sons!

We emerged afterwards into the late afternoon sun, happy that the rain had marched on, and made our way back to Juliette's for a much needed cuppa. Our energy duly restored, we popped into South Pasadena for a wander around the rather quaint shopping area - the high street was full of interesting coffee shops, a second hand book shop, a bakery, plus, Menchies, where we stopped for frozen yogurt! 

Juliette had been tempting us with a potential night out at a line-dancing club (!). However, it was a relatively long drive, and our energy levels were getting low - so we opted for a quiet evening around the dining room table, listening to Cameron talking about the novel he's writing!




 




 

 




 
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