We just returned from a week in Los Angeles. My super-talented sister-in-law, Wendy Lane Bailey, had flown out to L.A. to perform at the Gardenia. We were supposed to arrive in time to watch her sing, but our van's new transmission had a different plan. Even though the transmission was only a couple of months old, it gave out on our way out of town—big time. Needless to say, we started out on a different adventure than we had planned.
I'll just say that we got to know the truck stop really well. And after a few hours we made our way to a pizza place near the mechanic’s, camping there for most of the evening until we had secured a rental van to pile into. Nine hours and $700 later, we were back on the road to L.A.
Unfortunately, we missed Wendy’s performance. A serious bummer. But, we tried to make up for it once we arrived. We stayed in a beautiful hotel in old-town Pasadena, one of my favorite areas.
Our first stop was to visit old haunts in the Fashion District with the kids. When we lived in Hollywood, Elijah was about the same age as our little one is now. It was bizarre—and pretty cool—to see him, at 6-foot-3, push our youngest around in a stroller just like I used to push Elijah around the Fashion District in a stroller, years back. What a serious time warp.
We ate at Pink’s hot dogs for old-time’s-sake, spent a day at The Getty Museum, shopped at the Rose Bowl Flea Market (my favorite!), toured our old neighborhood—which has changed quite a bit, yet is so much the same—had cocoa at The Grove, and received a driving tour of historic Venice, CA from Wendy’s friend, Jessie, who has lived in Venice for the last 40 years.
I’ve been to Venice many times, but I had no idea that a large part of the city was originally built along canals. Instead of driving to a neighbor’s house, they would canoe. I love it.
As for The Getty, I adore it.
If you can believe this, I never did visit The Getty when we lived close-by. We even had a friend who was a curator there at the time, yet I still didn't make it. Back then, Isaac once went on a private tour of the museum before it opened. Where was I at the time!? Seriously.
It was fantastic. I am awed and inspired. And ready to find a portrait-painting class to take. Know of a good one? We’re back home now, but part of me wants to turn around and head right back to The Getty. If you are ever in Southern California, get yourself there. Don’t miss it.
The mechanic repaired the transmission without charge. However, I’m still sad that the fiasco cost us our chance to see Wendy’s show. She has two more shows coming up in New York City next week. Perhaps I can round up a couple of free tickets to give away and send one of you in my stead.
All photos are from my Instagram feed—hallelujah for functioning phone cameras! We forgot to pack the big camera on this trip—ack.