Here in Malibu
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March 31, 2010

Dry dock


This little ChrisCraft, with its old-school wood and zippy silhouette, sits patiently in a nearby canyon. The sun can't quite reach it, but on cool nights when the fog rolls in, it gleams (and dreams?) beneath a coat of briny droplets.

March 30, 2010

Cloudy along the coast

blue datura 062Time was, rain this late would have been odd. But if you've been paying attention over recent years, our stormy season has moved into March and even April. Am I alone in looking forward to another storm, or even two?

March 29, 2010

Let's start Monday with a laugh

Remember this, the balance in a neighbor's checking account?spare change

Well on Saturday, I received this, a dividend check from Southwest Airlines:oy

From the ridiculous to the sublime, though which is which is up for grabs.

March 28, 2010

The view from here


It's so absurdly lovely here that really, I'm not so much a photographer as a stenographer. Merely reporting the seascape verbatim.

And in case you were wondering, traffic here today is impossible.

March 27, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Garbo and magic


I love these two neon signs, fronting tiny businesses on 4th street in Santa Monica.


March 26, 2010


top of Corral Canyon
Amy and I recently drove to the top of Corral Canyon, to where the paved road ends and the dirt track known as the Castro Motorway begins. The light up there is different. The colors aren't the same. The scents and sounds and wildlife all let you know you've left the flatlands of Corral Canyon

Though ours was one of maybe a dozen cars parked in the dry and dusty lot, the whole time we hiked, we never saw another human.

And if you're in the market for a great blog to read, Amy writes LA Explored, a look at LA and beyond.

March 25, 2010

June gloom

Despite what the rhymesters say about June and gloom or May and gray, the clouds and fog and mist and marine layers that equal springtime here in SoCal actually start much sooner. Like yesterday. And today. And maybe tomorrow.

All the more reason to resurrect my obsession fascination with the silken, saturated orange of the lowly nasturtium blossom:nasturtium

Ahhh, better now.

And check it out -- craft beer labels as the new orange crate art.

March 24, 2010

Hawks in the morning

morning hawks

It's a reflex -- see a hawk, grab the camera. This guy is one of a pair of hawks who have chosen this eucalyptus as the spot to await the sunrise.morning hawks

March 23, 2010

Wisteria window

wisteria windowYes, the camera settings were still scrambled here, and while this isn't quite how the wisteria in the courtyard of the 1928 house we were touring looked, it's exactly how it felt, deeply purple and somehow hopeful with a persistent undertone of "Dude, what on earth are you doing indoors?"

Excellent question.

March 22, 2010

Monday sunrise

monday sunrise

I was messing around with the settings on my little Canon point-and-shoot and, as almost always happens when I do that, forgot. So this is a photo of today's sunrise, but it really didn't look like this at all.

March 20, 2010

Signs of Saturday: It's spring!

Today's the vernal equinox, the first day of spring! Here in Malibu we're treated to that annual rite by which local kids, giddy with spring fever hormones, write stuff on a wall: locals only

...and local dads promptly erase it:painted over

March 19, 2010

Sight-seeing in Malibu

horse play

It was unnerving, really, driving near this particular horse trailer, whose occupant reached as far out as his long, long neck would allow to grin and whinny and nibble at passing cars.

March 18, 2010

Blue and green

green and blueA little color, a little texture, a splash of sunlight and look -- it's spring.

March 17, 2010

Orange blossoms

orange blossomsAh, orange blossoms, all prim and virginal when the buds are shut tight. But when those petals part, when the plump and sticky, frilly and feathery bits of pistil and stamen spill out, a siren's song to pollinating bees everywhere, well those orange blossoms look just the teensiest bit slutty.

orange blossoms

orange blossoms

orange blossoms

March 16, 2010

Driving to the beach. Then into the water.

car and boat

This car's plenty cute enough just being so shiny and red and retro-looking. Check behind the rear wheels, though, and you'll see propellers. As in a boat. As in you can drive this car to the water's edge and then in and then keep going.

Oh the things we see on PCH on a is-it-spring-yet afternoon.

March 15, 2010

The lookout


Can you tell that's a squirrel at the very top of that tree? He's been there the last few weeks, gently swaying in the canyon breeze.

Drives the dogs nuts. Makes me laugh out loud.

March 14, 2010

And now, Maisie the Teacup Lab®

To take the edge off the fact we're back to that beknighted idea, daylight savings time, the semi-annual rite by which we lose complete touch with the true solar cycle of light and dark, here's Maisie the Teacup Lab®.

Happy:ears flying


Still happy:Oh Maisie, we love you so.

And thanks to B. J. White for the semi-annual correction on daylight saving (correct) versus savings (hey, English is my third language) time.

March 13, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Stay on the trail

This is just one of the many signs at the Point Dume Nature Preserve, the fragile sweep of land that forms the northern tip of the Santa Monica Bay:please be careful

And here's what too many careless and clueless visitors do -- ignore the signs to hike and climb and dig and collect and incrementally destroy the landforms and plant life in this amazing, irreplaceable place. trespassing at Point Dume

March 12, 2010

The wild life in Malibu

great blue heronWe're walking along the bluffs, the dogs and I, in a meditative state, which for the dogs means ball!coyotepoop!ball!deadgopher! I, meanwhile, have taken leave of my senses entirely because I get a glimpse of this tall creature standing in the brush and my mind goes, huh, a baby giraffe. (I know, right?)

It's a heron, of course, just standing there, and then suddenly flying, passing right by us, the wing beats a tenor thud you feel more than you hear, and it's all so graceful and unexpected it takes the dogs a full ten seconds to patrol the area and see whether heron poop makes the Top Ten list.heron in flight

March 11, 2010

The Malibu bluffs

blue and bluffs

I've been coming here ever since I was a little kid and still, this stretch of coastal bluff in Malibu takes my breath away.

March 10, 2010


blueThere are days when what you need most is blue, blue, and ever more blue.


March 8, 2010

Just because


After a winter of rain the mountains here are lush and green, every open space a sweet-smelling meadow.

All of which means Maisie the Teacup Lab®, not the tallest dog you've ever met, goes for a run and vanishes for long stretches of time.

March 7, 2010

The view from here

top of the mountainWell, it's really the view from way up there, the top of Corral Canyon, reached on what's jokingly referred to as a road but is really little more than a series of hair-pin turns, each a taunt or a dare as it thrusts you out and over (well, looking over, anyway, and once you look, lord it feels like you're falling) the precipice.

And when you get there, this is the view.

March 6, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Peace out, dude

get the message?Get the message?

March 5, 2010

Of sunflowers and parrot poop

Every year I plant a garden up at the barn:garden

Which, despite soil so full of clay you can actually make pottery out of it, does pretty well:
barn garden

See?first harvest

And since I love the parrots who live in the canyon, I always leave some sunflowers for them to eat:parrots in the garden

And because Mother Nature turns out to be a toddler who can't pass up a good poop joke, the parrots perch in a tree across the road and, um, recycle those seeds:
volunteer sunflowera

March 3, 2010

Coming in for a landing

pelicansI love that this pelican looks like he's walking on water, which I imagine, for the briefest of instants each time he lands, he actually does.

March 2, 2010

In case you missed the memo...

tuesday morning

There's that thing happening when the TV weather person says stuff like low pressure and jet stream and moisture and is my eyeliner on straight?, all the time gesturing vaguely at a map s/he can't actually see, which means there's more rain on the way.

And to all of you lovely Canadians who have somehow found this blog, congratulations on a thrilling conclusion to the Winter Games.

March 1, 2010

New neighbors up at the barn

see the gopher?Another sign of spring is this little gopher, tunneling near my garden up at the barn, flinging dirt with joyful abandon while flipping Maisie the bird.

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