Day 6 – party, science museum and Space Shuttle Endeavour

Today we picked Cam up at about 10:30 from Christina’s, (with a detour en route to print off tickets at Max’s office), then went via Toys R Us to a birthday party for one of her classmates. This was in a house up on a hill looking over the Paramount lot (where various films are made). It was a superhero party, and the children made superhero capes out of felt. There were a lot of children and parents packed into the garden. We left at about 1pm and went on to the Science centre.

This is set in the Olympic park so there are a lot of slightly elderly stadia around it. First we went to see Endeavour, the newest space shuttle. I remember seeing footage on the news of its trip through LA (involving bending trees and removing lamp posts). It was very impressive, although one realises how little of an exhibition one gets to see when one is accompanying a 4-year-old!

Then we went to an IMAX showing of a butterfly journey – very nice story about citizen scientists. It was a “proper” IMAX screen (very high and with the seating steeply raked). Cam managed to get through most of it, but got bored later on and cuddled daddy.

Then we went to the natural history museum, where they were having a reptile appreciation day, so there were a lot of live animals around.

Finally we came back to Santa Monica for dinner in a Greek restaurant, then took Cami home to her mother.

Day 6 – party, science museum and Space Shuttle Endeavour

Today we picked Cam up at about 10:30 from Christina’s, (with a detour en route to print off tickets at Max’s office), then went via Toys R Us to a birthday party for one of her classmates. This was in a house up on a hill looking over the Paramount lot (where various films are made). It was a superhero party, and the children made superhero capes out of felt. There were a lot of children and parents packed into the garden. We left at about 1pm and went on to the Science centre.

This is set in the Olympic park so there are a lot of slightly elderly stadia around it. First we went to see Endeavour, the newest space shuttle. I remember seeing footage on the news of its trip through LA (involving bending trees and removing lamp posts). It was very impressive, although one realises how little of an exhibition one gets to see when one is accompanying a 4-year-old!

Then we went to an IMAX showing of a butterfly journey – very nice story about citizen scientists. It was a “proper” IMAX screen (very high and with the seating steeply raked). Cam managed to get through most of it, but got bored later on and cuddled daddy.

Then we went to the natural history museum, where they were having a reptile appreciation day, so there were a lot of live animals around.

Finally we came back to Santa Monica for dinner in a Greek restaurant, then took Cami home to her mother.

Day 5 – up the coast to Camarillo

We had a lazy start, then met Max’s friends Jeff (and his mother Kathy), Paul and Mark at Hurry Curry for lunch. After lunch, Jeff and Kathy joined us for a trip up the coastal road (Pacific coast highway) through Malibu and on further to an outlet mall called Camarillo premium outlets. They had about 100 stores, some I had heard of and many new ones. I browsed through several shops without buying much, while Max and Jeff bought clothes and so on. Kathy window shopped too. 

We had warm pretzels in mid afternoon (cinnamon sugared, mmm) and at the end of the day we had a meal in a local steakhouse before the drive home (about an hour – it was dark by then alas so no more nice views over the ocean). 
I wrote postcards when we got back but I am sure I will beat them home…

Day 5 – up the coast to Camarillo

We had a lazy start, then met Max’s friends Jeff (and his mother Kathy), Paul and Mark at Hurry Curry for lunch. After lunch, Jeff and Kathy joined us for a trip up the coastal road (Pacific coast highway) through Malibu and on further to an outlet mall called Camarillo premium outlets. They had about 100 stores, some I had heard of and many new ones. I browsed through several shops without buying much, while Max and Jeff bought clothes and so on. Kathy window shopped too. 

We had warm pretzels in mid afternoon (cinnamon sugared, mmm) and at the end of the day we had a meal in a local steakhouse before the drive home (about an hour – it was dark by then alas so no more nice views over the ocean). 
I wrote postcards when we got back but I am sure I will beat them home…

Day 4 – Hollywood

Friday was Movie day (1). We took Cam to school for 9, then came back to shower and get ready. 

Max then drove us into town. We parked on the road outside the Los Angeles County Museum of Art ($1, vs. $7 for the LACMA car park right beside it…) The gallery was opening just as we arrived, so it was quiet for the first half hour or so until School Parties started to arrive. The most entertaining piece was a giant car and train run – anyone got a spare room they could set one up in? I will have to wait to get home to post photos on the blog alas. 
We had to get to the cinema in time so we left without seeing the whole gallery, and had a Mexi-terranean lunch from a truck on the road outside. There was a queue of about 10 of them, with all sorts of food on offer, and they were doing good business from local office workers and visitors. Another LA experience ticked off the list!
We then drove a mile or two to the (tourist) heart of Hollywood, to the Walk of Fame (stars in the pavement) and the Chinese theatre. In a mall beside it there was a set of stairs that played organ notes for the different steps you stood on. Sounded very cacophonous when a crowd was heading up or down. 
After a brief touristy ogle at the stars and the foot and hand prints outside the theatre, we went in to see Gravity on the IMAX screen (big and curved). The chairs reclined and we had a wall in front of us (of a height to put one’s feet up on). Very comfy (not as much as the cinema seats in Delhi, but not far off). The film was great – just Sandra Bullock and George Clooney and the voice of Ed Harris as Mission Control in Houston (again). Lots of impressive 3D cinematography and a good script. 
Next we drove up into the hills on a wiggly windy back road to see the Hollywood sign. This was not from the usual tourist viewpoint, but a much quieter one, and a great view. Then back to Santa Monica and a quick trip to Barnes and Noble to buy postcards (I had forgotten to do this in Hollywood) and buy some dinner (sandwiches from Bay City Deli – an Italian deli that Max rates highly). 
Back at his flat we ate the sandwiches on the sofa and watched Pitch Perfect and Iron Man 3 (which had a couple of scenes set outside the Chinese theatre we were at earlier).
Bed at midnight – perhaps I’m beating the jetlag?

Day 4 – Hollywood

Friday was Movie day (1). We took Cam to school for 9, then came back to shower and get ready. 

Max then drove us into town. We parked on the road outside the Los Angeles County Museum of Art ($1, vs. $7 for the LACMA car park right beside it…) The gallery was opening just as we arrived, so it was quiet for the first half hour or so until School Parties started to arrive. The most entertaining piece was a giant car and train run – anyone got a spare room they could set one up in? I will have to wait to get home to post photos on the blog alas. 
We had to get to the cinema in time so we left without seeing the whole gallery, and had a Mexi-terranean lunch from a truck on the road outside. There was a queue of about 10 of them, with all sorts of food on offer, and they were doing good business from local office workers and visitors. Another LA experience ticked off the list!
We then drove a mile or two to the (tourist) heart of Hollywood, to the Walk of Fame (stars in the pavement) and the Chinese theatre. In a mall beside it there was a set of stairs that played organ notes for the different steps you stood on. Sounded very cacophonous when a crowd was heading up or down. 
After a brief touristy ogle at the stars and the foot and hand prints outside the theatre, we went in to see Gravity on the IMAX screen (big and curved). The chairs reclined and we had a wall in front of us (of a height to put one’s feet up on). Very comfy (not as much as the cinema seats in Delhi, but not far off). The film was great – just Sandra Bullock and George Clooney and the voice of Ed Harris as Mission Control in Houston (again). Lots of impressive 3D cinematography and a good script. 
Next we drove up into the hills on a wiggly windy back road to see the Hollywood sign. This was not from the usual tourist viewpoint, but a much quieter one, and a great view. Then back to Santa Monica and a quick trip to Barnes and Noble to buy postcards (I had forgotten to do this in Hollywood) and buy some dinner (sandwiches from Bay City Deli – an Italian deli that Max rates highly). 
Back at his flat we ate the sandwiches on the sofa and watched Pitch Perfect and Iron Man 3 (which had a couple of scenes set outside the Chinese theatre we were at earlier).
Bed at midnight – perhaps I’m beating the jetlag?

Links of Interest

There are certain types of blog posts I  have always enjoyed reading and to this day that type still draws me in.

They typically have a two fold approach. First they are a short list and second they are links to other sites, other posts, other ideas that the blog author found interesting that week. So here I am introducing my own version of that. I’m aiming to do this type of post at least twice a month (maybe more) and one thing to clarify up front is that they won’t always be about this blogs core aim.

So onwards.

  1. Where is the fun in specializing as a photographer? A great read from Colby Brown and if you don’t want to read then just look at the stunning pictures.
  2. Turn Day Into Night in Photoshop. In this video tutorial Howard Pinsky takes you through converting a day time shot into a realistic night shot.
  3. Smart Travel Router. Need a world travel plug, USB charger and router in one small reasonably priced box? Then Satechi have you covered.
  4. Dublin City Guide. Only because I’m off here very shortly for a long weekend I’ve spent a fair bit of time on this site.

 

Links of Interest is a post from: churchTechy

Day 3 – Long Beach aquarium

We kept Cam out of school today and took her to the aquarium. It was about 30 miles away, all by the Interstate. Because we were three people we could use the Carpool lane, which was good as the traffic was heavy. The habit of roads to have painted messages on the Tarmac in reading order looks odd to my eyes. 

LANE
POOL
CAR
Or
XING
PED
It suggests people read things word by word rather than absorbing meaning all at once. I do like YIELD on signs rather than GIVE WAY, though. 
The aquarium was jolly – lots of alien fishes from the Pacific. The place was full of school parties though, so rather rackety!
On leaving we took a very brief walk around the harbour to see the Queen Mary, which is docked there permanently (like FRY Britannia in Leith). Cam started to grumble though so the walk was short.
Back in Santa Monica, we went shopping for shoes for Cam. Her feet seem to have grown two sizes in a few weeks, so Max got her 3 new pairs from Sketchers. The toes all light up with sparkly lights. 
After that we went to get crepes and sat in the food court to eat them while Cam played in a play park. After waffles with bananas and strawberries for breakfast, it was a calorific day! We didn’t have anything for lunch though. I have not managed to fast at all since being here, but I notice my appetite is much less and I don’t need to eat a lot to feel full.
I am still jet lagged (in that I am tired in the early evening and wake up at about 4 am. Grrr. Last night I played The Last of Us (well actually Max played it after I demonstrated my incompetence at gaming in the first 15 mins or so. He took over as soon as there were any fights). It’s a lovely game but a bit scary…

Day 3 – Long Beach aquarium

We kept Cam out of school today and took her to the aquarium. It was about 30 miles away, all by the Interstate. Because we were three people we could use the Carpool lane, which was good as the traffic was heavy. The habit of roads to have painted messages on the Tarmac in reading order looks odd to my eyes. 

LANE
POOL
CAR
Or
XING
PED
It suggests people read things word by word rather than absorbing meaning all at once. I do like YIELD on signs rather than GIVE WAY, though. 
The aquarium was jolly – lots of alien fishes from the Pacific. The place was full of school parties though, so rather rackety!
On leaving we took a very brief walk around the harbour to see the Queen Mary, which is docked there permanently (like FRY Britannia in Leith). Cam started to grumble though so the walk was short.
Back in Santa Monica, we went shopping for shoes for Cam. Her feet seem to have grown two sizes in a few weeks, so Max got her 3 new pairs from Sketchers. The toes all light up with sparkly lights. 
After that we went to get crepes and sat in the food court to eat them while Cam played in a play park. After waffles with bananas and strawberries for breakfast, it was a calorific day! We didn’t have anything for lunch though. I have not managed to fast at all since being here, but I notice my appetite is much less and I don’t need to eat a lot to feel full.
I am still jet lagged (in that I am tired in the early evening and wake up at about 4 am. Grrr. Last night I played The Last of Us (well actually Max played it after I demonstrated my incompetence at gaming in the first 15 mins or so. He took over as soon as there were any fights). It’s a lovely game but a bit scary…

Day 2 – Getty galleries

Cam went to school today and Max and I went to the Getty centre first. You park at the bottom of the hill and them get a driverless tram up the hill to the centre. We didn’t cover all the galleries but we did see Spring (Triumphal procession from Granny and Grandpa’s) which was nice.

We had lunch in the cafe, with a lovely shady spot under a loggia, and after lunch we picked up a couple of tickets for the Getty villa (you have to pre-book, which I didn’t know in advance so it was good we went to the centre first).

The villa is on a hillside in Malibu – not much in the way of views because of all the trees, but a nice calm setting. The herb garden smelled lovely. There was an exhibition of the Cyrus cylinder and of Tiberius, and I found a statue of Livia, which pleased me.

In the evening we picked Cam up and then fed her meatballs and spaghetti.