Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Weekend in Southern CA, 3.2.06 - 3.5.06

As we drove down the coast from LA to Laguna Beach we were both shocked and underwhelmed at the same time: oil rigs and off-shore drilling to one side, the sea-side, and row after row of ticky-tacky, identical, dead-looking houses on the other. This is not the California of my imagination, or even of my recent past. Nothing seems to have been built more than five years ago. The pier above looked like it might have been the oldest structure we encountered.

Inland was just as bad. The campus at UC Irvine sprawled across several acres unremarkably. I was inside most of the time, listening and contributing to two days of talks, so granted my experience was limited. Charlotte from Melbourne and two wonderful Berliners, among others, tried to stifle their amazement at California's offerings thus far. I assured them LA would be better. The blue lights of the UC Irvine Arts building caught my eye as I left the campus for the last time.

Tim went to the Salk Institute in La Jolla, designed by Louis Kahn, while I attended the conference. We had been there before years ago, and he loved it so much he wanted to go back, in part just to see if he would appreciate it as much the second time. He did.

Below are lights from one of the smaller refinery cities we passed on our way in and out of LA.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

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11:39 PM  

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