Police ordered northbound cars up Sunset to the 405, to the 101, to Topanga and then back down again to PCH, an hour's detour to go half a mile. I headed up Sunset and, thinking to find a quiet place to check the Thomas Guide, followed a car with flashing tail lights as it veered left into a tiny side street.
As the rest of the PCH traffic roared on up the hill, we wound down and around a dark, twisty road in the dark, foggy night. Suddenly, a fortress of a guard gate with a sign demanding I.D. loomed up, but a man with a flashlight waved us through. We drove.
The road narrowed and dropped and at each fork and curve, another flashlight waved us on. We crept through the shadowed grounds of the Getty Villa, magically and mysteriously open for our tiny caravan. How did they know? Why didn't the police know?
The last flashlight waved us through the Villa's front gates and there we were, just moments later, back on PCH, the only northbound car for the rest of the drive home.
Photo: Flickr / via Creative Commons