Some days, Walter gets more email than I do. And to those writers wondering about his whereabouts, I apologize for his recent absence on the blog, and even more for the fuzziness (the camera has been sat on once too many times, I fear) of the images. It's a tribute to the flying border collie that his many charms transcend poor photo technique.
Last weekend's epic rains filled to overflowing the ponds where we walk and Miss Maisie could not be happier. All around the perimeter, about two feet of gently sloping lawn is submerged.
Usually Maisie's not allowed in the water but a travel ban suddenly seemed
unconstitutional like a rotten idea. So now the Muffinhead wades her way around the circumference of the pond, the terra firma of green grass beneath her paws, getting her feet (ok, and most of the rest of her) wet, coming home soaked and smelling of wet dog and thus fulfilling her divine purpose.
Yes, in times of great stress and despair, words that make the 4- and 6-year-old boys next door laugh out loud (duck butt!) bring relief.
Solstice canyon is closed due to rockfalls and mudslides so here's Bluffs Park, all clouds and blue and green as the storm moved out.
Deserted, except for some gulls. My favorite part is the light from a sign on the pier, reflected in the waves.
The first inkling that this was bigger, so much bigger than expected came at the North Hollywood Metrolink. Not even 8 am and the parking lots were full and the streets jammed. Thousands of people converged, surged through the concourse, packed the stairs, filled (and over-filled) the cars.
At Pershing Square the crowds were so thick it took half an hour just to reach the street. There, more than one hundred thousand people (the LAPD head count doesn't get any more specific than that) walked peacefully through downtown.
It was a parade, a celebration, a repudiation, a declaration, and a joyful revelation. It was thoughtful, peaceful (not a single arrest) inclusive and hopeful. As you marched with the women and men and young people of all races and ages and ethnicities, from all walks of life, united by the need to speak out, to push back, to stand up for one another, for human rights, for basic decency, you couldn't help but feel deep pride in our city and -- have you seen the news stories and overhead shots? -- our nation and our world.
Metro crowd at Pershing Square:
And out into dtla:
The signs, lord the signs were great, somber, defiant, funny and profane.
*This post has been adjusted to reflect LAPD's crowd estimate in dtla.
Thanks to the low mud-to-dog ratio after a rain, we head to Solstice Canyon for post-storm walks. And after last night the creek has moved from running to racing and, in a few places, flooding.
Also, because the idea of them never gets old, a wild parrot.
After years of drought the sight and sounds of this creek (and the wild parrots -- hear them?) edges into the realm of miracles.
A break from the rain and a break from work and oh the colors:
Every puddle played host to a bird:
Seriously -- every single puddle:
A California poppy was waking up:
And miraculously no one else was around:
'Bu plate specials, parked within a few feet of each other. These fall into the 'self-identify' subcategory of the genre.
We've been rain-starved for so long it's hard to keep in mind that, welcome as it may be, this extended run of clouds and sprinkles is, in fact, an ongoing series of near-misses.
A lot of leafless trees on the blog these days but with the clouds and the light and the lace of bare branches, with the storminess of it all, the wet and winter, it's hard to look away.