Rats. Just as I was about to kayak out and talk to the scientists on the Monterey Bay Aquarium's shark trawler, they decided the 4th shark they've put in the floating pen this season, a 4-foot female weighing 55 pounds, was ready for prime time.
They took her to the Malibu Pier yesterday, transfered her to a portable tank and right now, she swims with the fishes in the aquarium's Outer Bay Exhibit. The photo above is the shark swimming in her new (temporary) digs. Below is the shark as she was being released.
I wrote a post about it for my LAT blog, LA Now, where you can find more details. (Sorry, I'm too pooped for a re-write.)
Photos: (c) Monterey Bay Aquarium/Randy Wilder.
Even if you couldn't feel it, in the angle of the light, the shape of the shadows, the quick dusk, you'd know it by the sunrise, the point of entry moving ever southward, away from the mountains to its winter home at sea.
Shrouded by trees, visible only if you peek through the wooden gates, the 156-year-old Gilmore adobe sits on 1.25 acres of land at the center of one of the most densely-packed parts of the city.
Outside the gates, it's LA in full swing. Inside, on the manicured lawn, under ancient oaks, in the shade of walls that have stood for a century and a half, Old California calls you.
It's private property, no photos allowed. This view is from the parking structure at The Grove, land owned by the Gilmore Corp. and merely leased out for 99 years.
Sometimes I think I need to photograph every last bit of untouched land here in Malibu because the number of people willing and eager to blast and bulldoze and tear it apart to build enormous homes right next door to enormous homes that are already for sale, well, that list seems endless.
This used to be a wooded curve in the road, a small arroyo leading to a series of rounded hills. It's gutted now, a driveway going in, walls going up, a house coming soon. A roadrunner used to live there, which is a small thing, I know, but where will it go now? How long before it can't find a place to nest or enough room to hunt? How long before the roadrunners just disappear?
Evinrude says yes, and lounges in recovery mode this morning.
Just a quick shot of the bridge over the creek, then a glimpse of a little path that leads from the houses above to the beach below.
It's another misty morning here in Malibu, the kind when even the birdsong sounds muffled. Not much surf today, just a ruffle of tiny waves, a riffle, really, at the water's edge.
To the east the sun has broken through a bit, lit the sea and started the task of burning off this cloud cover. But it's all so muted and I'm impatient so here's a flower from late last week. Ahhh, color.
Another in a string of cool and cloudy mornings today, socked in by the same marine layer that rolled in last night and kept us from seeing a single shooting star (OK,
meteorite meteor, but isn't "shooting star" just so much more evocative?) during the Perseid shower.
So here's a shot of Jake and Maisie on a hot and sunny Sunday. We walked up a road that led to a trail that led to a hilltop, all dry grasses hissing in the breeze and blazing blue Pacific as far as the eye can see. We showed the dogs where to find some new places to run. They showed us where to find some old coyote poop.
* I'm told that a meteorite is the meteor that falls to earth. Shooting stars are meteors. Meteorites are the stuff of alarmist news reports, scifi novels and, in certain hands, conspiracy theory.
It's August 10th and, believe it or not, this little blog turns two today. It's as lovely a way to mark the day as I can imagine. It's warm here today, sweet sun, clear sky, restless ocean, but not many people. Quieter, in fact, than it's been all summer.
Things are winding down here in Malibu, people turning their minds back to school and work. Labor Day, just weeks away, is like a faucet shutting off. Our town goes back to what passes for normal around here, ironic, considering September and even October bring some of the warmest weather of the year.
And fires, though let's not think about that right now. Right now, here's the start of the very first post on this blog two years ago, a time so different it feels like it happened to a different person altogether. Which, when I think about it, it did.
Everyone wants a piece of Malibu, including me. My buying power has proven modest Ė an aging mobile home on a bluff above the beach. We rent the land. The house sits on metal tripods that shimmy in the slightest earthquake, let the occasional raccoon or opossum rest in the cool darkness. Their smell moves through the air vents, a pungent musk that canít be anything but wild animal.
When the sun goes down, coyotes light up the canyon with yips and howls, bloodthirsty arias that alter your dreams. The cats in the house wake up then, drift to an open window to watch and listen long into the night. At dawn, a membrane of mist...
The rest is here. Thank you for reading, for your lovely emails, for thinking a little blog about this spot by the sea is worth your time. Happy anniversary!
Two years ago, someone tied this rowboat to the bluff and walked away. Maybe they sold their house in the great Cove real estate boom of '07, maybe they just forgot they own a boat at all. Whatever the case, the rowboat is still there, at the end of that length of white rope that vanishes deep, deep into the sand.
I used to be the only one who knew that. Now you know, too.
I can't, at least not the first (or second or even fourth) time around. In fact, I'm in such plentiful company with the not-spelling-it-right that I had to deliberately spell it wrong a few times before Google finally delivered the correct letters in the correct order. I think.
So, long story long, here's the bougainvillea growing outside my door, a pink so bright that it seeps inside and tints the kitchen walls.
Except it's summer. Still, here's my office at the barn, swept clean of dirt and dust and lizard poop.