Tobago

Tobago
Horizon at Sandy Point

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Santa Monica Impressions

Crossing the Arizona desert and the Rockies east of California, seen from 40,000 feet up: so much sand, such craggy tors. Some snow-capped peaks studded with pines. That such vast uninhabited landscape could still exist is hard to believe when you come from a crowded hot little south Caribbean island.

Landing at Tom Bradley International Airport Los Angeles: a clear blue sky, three hours behind the time zone we had just travelled from, and four behind the little island's. Piece of the USA that is a bit more than the rest. Could be the separation created by the Rockies.
Bird of Paradise, blooming gloriously in mid winter

A morning walk down Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica Los Angeles, for the first view of the Pacific. No waves today, just quiet water lapping wide Baywatch white sand beach, under a big and seamless sky merging to the hroizon. If you look into the sun, the Santa Monica Pier stands like a crazy carnival against hazy light.

The Santa Monica's Farmers Market is bustling with fresh home grown produce. Tomatoes from bright red to orange and some purple green wrinkled heirloom variety.  Sweet navel oranges, tart tangerines. My favourite this morning are the Hachiya persimmons - over-ripe and plump and heavy with promise. Four of them from an elderly Oriental lady cost $2.50. I am already looking forward to the next market day, Saturday.
Purple carrots

Persimmons between oranges

Artichokes

Olives
Fried green tomatoes anyone?

We walk the streets admiring the architecture, mainly from the fifties. Buildings are low, no more than two or three stories, gracious, open facades catching the sun, light shifting and shimmering from the south. This is the south California coast, a most fortunate land, which makes it a worthwhile place to live, even with the thought of earthquakes in the back of your mind.

The January winter is mild. Bamboo green, pines and palm trees. Agaves and succulents suck water from the soil. The Bird of Paradise has made a home here; blooming in mid-winter.
Sea front at Santa Monica


Sand, sea and sky - on the edge of the Pacific


Wilshire Boulevard heading west

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