After a year and a half gap I’ve decided to start writing about something that isn’t travel exploration. I’m switching over to exploring things that I’m making and things that inspire me, which will probably still include some traveling.

I’ve started taking note of things that come up at least twice from unrelated sources in my life. One thing that has come up many times is the Oblique Strategies deck created by Brian Eno and Peter Schmidt in the 70s. There was always something a little too prescriptive for me about this, although the idea of having a deck to address creative block seemed like a great idea.

Journeys to somewhere reused for shuffling.

Journeys to somewhere reused for shuffling.

I’ve been playing around the with the idea of how much we know but we forget we know. Creative block is not the time in which I feel fantastic at pulling out forgotten knowledge but it is a great time for some extra self empowerment. I made myself a deck of cards of ideas I’ve had to shelve for the moment and things that inspire me. They become my own personal oblique strategies deck, an extra idea or lens in which to consider where I’m blocked. There’s an extra bonus of a good feeling in giving shelved ideas some space by recording them so they can be retrieved one day. Using permanent markers on slick card also means there’s a “shake it like a polaroid” moment as I wait for it to dry.

I’m using train tickets here because that’s what I had a large stack of sitting at home. I attempted to go to the local stationary store, but attempting to buy things after 6 pm in England is hopeless. The still open pound store had nothing useful. My first thought at upcycling was  using old business cards, but alas I left most of those in America. Any shuffle-able stiff card should work.

This lovely number that I use to hold the cards did come from a different pound store.

This lovely number that I use to hold the cards did come from a different pound store.

Last week was particularly stressful so I also explored the use of this self empowerment for anxiety related purposes. The act of writing down a list of things that calmed me down was calming. Now when I am too stressed to think of anything it’s a reflex to either pull a card or think of something calming to write down to think about.

For when I can't get to these things at the moment.

For when I can’t get to these things at the moment.

Then just for fun I made a deck of comfort foods that I enjoy, branching off from the fact that one of my relaxing cards was “comfort foods”. Not yet immediately useful but perhaps it will be one day when I can’t decide what to cook.

Who knows what other decks I will find useful to make one day. In the meantime, I’ll experiment with adding to my existing decks as I collect more train tickets.

Los Angeles may be a city famous for cars and smog, but there are also lots of outdoor spaces. This is mildly delayed but spring is a perfect time to visit a lot of these places while the weather is warm and not yet hot. I am not covering the popular Griffith Park, the Malibu area, or Runyon Canyon areas as I’ve been making an effort to explore places I had not been yet.

First up is Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area. I’d been here many years ago on a misguided mountain bike adventure that I am still not skilled enough for. As a hike it is lovely with a small fishing area, barbecue and picnicking areas, hilariously fake waterfall, and lots of beautiful, if somewhat smoggy, views of Los Angeles.

20140526_132243It’s near impossible to find a map of the park online for some reason. The trails are outlined but it’s hard to find your way around them as there are a lot not shown on this map. Luckily the 308 acre park is easily navigated.

20140507_182654It feels like an oasis of plants in the middle of what is otherwise an endless sprawl of buildings. I’m not sure if it’s technically the same park as the Baldwin Hills stairs but they are only separated by La Cienega and an oil field. This park is much bigger with better trails, less people, and similarly great views.

20140607_200538This is the view from an empty lot near where I live. The oil fields are not the most scenic or full of nature but it is probably an important cause of why this area hasn’t been completely developed yet.

April brought the annual blooming of the poppies at the Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve. I wanted to go in years prior but the drought meant that there were not many flowers to be seen. This year was not the best bloom they’ve ever had but it was enough to make the trek out there.

Panorama_PoppiesIt felt like endless fields of orange and yellow. I can only imagine what this park looks like on a good, non-drought year. On our drive in even the highways are lined with endless fields of wildflowers. Purple, white, yellow, silver, orange and pink explode in patches everywhere. Even the car is not immune as the monarch butterflies were out in force and can’t seem to avoid your car.
20140420_115636The season for these beautiful flowers is not very long but luckily it is before the desert gets too hot. The park is about an hour north of the city and requires lots and lots of water even for these mild 90 degree days. I’m not sure I want to know what full summer looks like. I love how the flowers ranged from pure yellow to pure orange and every fade in between.

20140420_110529On the way back we stopped at Agua Dulce park. I am amazed that Los Angeles handles so many parks of this size and across such a large area. This park is famous for being the filming spot for many television shows and movies, particularly for the original Star Trek series.
20140420_153638 I often take the Ballona Creek off street path but not the other paths so I ventured out to Playa Del Rey to check out Cabora Road. Unfortunately it is not great for road bikes but would probably be fine for mountain bikes. It seemed great for all the walkers and their dogs. The only information I could find about this path online were outdated from 2007 and mentioned the path being closed. Luckily it seems very much open with helpful signs and even paper maps.

20140609_152317Now the path mostly looks over tech companies but the area has an interesting history as well. This is the old Hughes Aircraft headquarters and warehouse where the Spruce Goose was made.

20140609_163205Riding out to the beach takes you past lots of condos and high speed roads with no bike paths but you also get this beautiful view of the Ballona Wetlands.

I grew up in the South Bay area of Los Angeles but wasn’t much of a hiker while growing up. My parents’ idea of the great outdoors involved staying in cabins and maybe doing a nature walk. I revisited the area recently and it looks like various groups have popped up to make the area’s trails more accessible.
20140517_105020The views are incredible as always and the tide pools and caves are fun to explore. The strange part about this area of Palos Verdes is that there are technically four cities so as you pass through trails they are in different states of accessibility and marking.

I also visited the Lake Balboa park in the San Fernando Valley but did not get any good pictures. I’m happy to see such large expanses of green space set aside for everything from picnics to model airplane flying. I have also revisited the Griffith Park area and note that the river bike and pedestrian path has been improved a lot in the last few years. You can even take a kayak down a portion of the river now. Get out there Los Angeles, and enjoy the seemingly endless perfect 70 degree days.

I've been very interested in immersive theater lately. New York and San Francisco have had shows where you can walk around but I've had more trouble finding experiences in Los Angeles. Cue "The Industry" who put on "Invisible Cities" last year. It is exciting because it happened in a public and not an enclosed, private space. They put on a full opera with a symphony at the beautiful Union Station where you walked around with bluetooth Sennheiser headphones and followed wherever your attention went as the singers wandered through the real life drama of the station. Sadly it was sold out by the time I heard about it. I managed to find out they were running a free show at the Hammer Museum in April and was very excited to catch it. They performed Terry Riley's In C in the main courtyard with inflatable tube men, a symphony, singers, and dancers. The Hammer Museum went completely free this year so this made it even more of an easy and delightful activity on a sunny Saturday afternoon. The Hammer Museum courtyard is a lush two story open air space that is beautiful to walk around in without a show going on. I walked in during intermission and there were only two xylophone players and a drummer. It seemed more magical that new elements appeared out of what felt like nowhere. The music was minimalist in a way where I could have sat the entire afternoon listening to it meditatively. We walked around both floors to get different views on what was going on and were pleasantly surprised as performers appeared in every direction around us. 20140412_163039I was too enthralled to take pictures of the dancers as they wove their way into the audience individually and started dancing. People didn't always realize there was stuff occurring behind them. The dancers would wander in and out of spots in the audience to perform. When they were separate, each dancer had their own style as they mimicked the tube men. When they congregated they would follow each others leads and do some synchronized scenes. StageThe singers in the middle were making some fun sounds that felt like beatboxing. That certainly is not something I expected in a form like opera, which I always thought of as stodgy. This performance turned all of that on its head. They all looked like they were genuinely having fun, laughing and smiling throughout the show. People would approach performers when they were on short breaks to talk to them. I even saw friends and family approach with hugs. I like how casual and friendly this felt. 20140412_165548To heighten the whimsical nature, there was a guy on what appears to be a toy piano. At the end of the show, I realized that this is probably the director of The Industry, Yuval Sharon.  I liked that there was a general uniform but everyone looked like they just grabbed what they had in their closets. It really made them blend in to the audience when they chose to.

20140412_164418At some point while standing on the second floor I thought I heard someone belting out loudly behind me.  It turns out some of the singers were sent walking around.  Soon we realized the performers were all wearing white or cream shaded shirts.  I chased around various performers but most people seemed to completely ignore the performers in their area. IMG_0802I was impressed with how clear and loud these singers were. I thought her popped collar hid a microphone. No, she just has some crazy lungs. It is an interesting sound to hear these wandering singers come in and out of your range and echo off the courtyard.

[youtube=www.youtube.com/watch?v=giXPrBRGEFw]

I loved that the dancers were around the audience all the time but it made me wonder two things. One, why didn't any kids get involved as they were running around and dancing? Two, did they hit anyone ever? Turns out both things happened! You can see a little kid joining the group in the video.

20140412_155551Take a bow, inflatable tube men. It was really fun to see so many different elements drawing my attention in so many directions. At one point I stood around trying to grab inflatable tubes as they whipped around unpredictably hitting the second floor. I'm really glad I caught this show and I'm looking forward to what this group puts out next. I can't say I've watched an opera before this but if they are more like this, I would watch more.

One of the first things I did when I got back in the country was try to find a low commitment hands on volunteering opportunity. Much like how I handle everything else, I wouldn’t shut up about it to everyone I talked to until someone had a great suggestion. I’ve been volunteering monthly with Days For Girls’ Los Angeles chapter for a while now. They make reusable and washable sanitary pads for women in developing countries where girls are often kept home from school whenever they have their period.  Imagine having to skip school for days a month!  That’s a serious disadvantage for half the population.  I am excited to hear that they may be aiming a little closer to home and delivering kits to Los Angeles’s own skid row.

Easy to use serger machines that just require you to hold some fabric straight.  I can handle that.

Easy to use serger machines that just require you to hold some fabric straight. I can handle that. I didn’t want to bother anyone so I avoided taking pictures of faces, but everyone is really friendly.

My complete lack of sewing skills and anything related is not a hindrance at all as everything is prepared so well that anyone can contribute. I’m constantly amazed at how much people prepare at home so that those of us without sewing skills can feel like we’re helpful.

Shields are made of colorful patterns and have pockets to hold one or two liners, depending on what kind of day it is.

Shields are made of colorful patterns, snap onto underwear, and have pockets to hold one or two liners, depending on what kind of day it is.

I kind of wonder if people on Etsy sell similar things for those living lifestyles that want to not use disposable products.  I doubt those are made with the sweatshop force of volunteer labor same love.

A complete kit involves multiple liners, shields to hold liners, a bar of soap, instructions, and a drawstring bag to hold everything.

A complete kit involves multiple liners, shields to hold liners and button onto underwear, a bar of soap, instructions, and a drawstring bag to hold everything. Everything is placed into the kit so that you understand how to use it if you for some reason don’t read instructions, like everyone does.

The fabric is a mixture of donations and things the organizers buy with money they fundraise. A lot of these kits go to young teenage girls so there’s an emphasis on bright and fun colors and patterns. I really enjoy seeing how vibrant and different all the kits are. There are designer fabrics tucked in there which is always fun to keep an eye out for.

The finished kits are packed inside the drawstring bags.  The bags are so girls have something discreet to carry their pads around in.

The finished kits are packed inside the drawstring bags. The bags are so girls have something discreet to carry their pads around in.

It’s an easy two hours on the first Thursday of every month at Grace Lutheran Church in Culver City.  There’s always people around to chat with and some tea and snacks on a side table.  I’ve missed a few for various classes and because Etsy craft night is the same schedule at CAFAM, but I always try to come when I can.  I wish this was around and I had found it when I lived in LA before.

The unofficial mascot, because breast cancer awareness shouldn't get all the fun slogans.

The unofficial mascot, because breast cancer awareness shouldn’t get all the fun slogans.

I can’t say this is making me go home and rush to sew anything else, but it does feel fulfilling to go and feel like you’re helping out immediately.  Their Facebook page is updated with where the kits are going and it is very rewarding to see girls from all over the world holding their new kits.  I struggled to find ways to volunteer meaningfully while traveling so I’m glad I am able to do so here.

When I was a freshman in college, my roommate would suggest that we drive into ethnic parts of town and try a random restaurant.  This worked better in Thai Town than it did when we ended up with extremely gamey offal and blood sausages in Koreatown.  Alas, although I’ve known to go to Jitlada, Pa Ord, and Sapp Coffee House for a while, I haven’t explored the rest of delicious Thai Town.  My recent time in Hollywood has reignited my interest to get into the weirder nooks.  I know I’m not done exploring yet but this is certainly a start.

I think Ruen Pair is actually the first restaurant in Thai Town I went to ever, the one in college.  The papaya salad was tasty and a bit big of a portion for one.  The morning glory was delicious but the crispy pork was a bit stale.  I've tried crispy pork with holy basil at Pa Ord many times as well, and always find it much less tasty than chicharrones.

I think Ruen Pair is actually the first restaurant in Thai Town I went to ever, the one in college. The papaya salad was tasty and a big portion for one. The morning glory was delicious but the crispy pork was a bit stale tasting. I’ve tried holy basil crispy pork at Pa Ord multiple times and find it much less tasty than chicharrones.  I guess I don’t like Thai crispy pork and won’t need to try the next door AYCE Crispy Pork Gang.

While I’ve tried Pa Ord and Sapp Coffee House for their boat noodles, both being delicious, I never get very far past that at Sapp Coffee House.  I haven’t been in years though so I did go back and try the boat noodles, still delicious and I mildly prefer them more than Pa Ord’s.  I can vouch that Pa Ord, who may or may not have three locations now, does do plenty of noodle dishes and tom kha kai well but is less spectacular for the rice dishes.

I've never gone past the boat noodles at the early closing Sapp Coffee House.  The jade noodles are beautiful to look at but I found the meats overwhelming and the overall effect a bit fishy due to the crab.

I’ve never gone past the boat noodles at the early closing Sapp Coffee House. The jade noodles are beautiful to look at but I found the meats overwhelming and the overall effect a bit fishy due to the crab.  Maybe it would be better “wet” with soup, but likely not.

For all my time in Thailand and Thai Town, I really haven't eaten very many curries.  I usually leave that to Jitlada's delicious mouth killing spiciness.  This is the red curry from Yai Thai, a northern specialist.  I believe curry is from the east, but this was pretty good with the mound of sticky rice.

I used to think Thai food just meant pad thai and curries.  For all my time in Thailand and Thai Town, I haven’t eaten very many curries. I usually leave that to Jitlada’s delicious mouth killing spiciness. This is the red curry from Yai Thai, a northern specialist. I believe curry is from the east, but this was pretty good with the sticky rice.

I spent most of my time in Thailand in the north so I have fallen in love with khao soi.  That is a khao soi on the right that tastes like nothing I had in Thailand, but is still pretty tasty.  On the left is a delicious flaming tom yum soup.

I spent most of my time in north Thailand so I have fallen in love with the curry noodle soup, khao soi. That is a khao soi on the right that tastes like nothing I had in Thailand, but is still pretty tasty. On the left is a delicious flaming tom yum soup.  There’s some sort of unlimited Thai iced tea cup you can order here.

This is the khao soi at Pailin Thai.  Still not quite the same as I remember but much closer.  Their bamboo salad, northern and Issan style sausages, and  nam ngeao, a red curry fermented rice noodle soup full of offal, are all delicious.

This is the khao soi at Pailin Thai. Still not the same as I remember but closer. Their bamboo salad, northern and Issan style sausages, and nam ngeao, a red curry fermented rice noodle soup full of offal, are all delicious.  The Thai iced tea is pretty good as well.

Khao man gai, quite similar to Hainanese chicken, is an obsession I picked up from a food truck in Portland.  It involves poached chicken, rice cooked in chicken stock, fat, and garlic, a clear brothy soup, cucumbers, and a fermented soy dipping sauce.  This one is from the late night Sanamluang Cafe.  It was a bit dry particularly compared to the fancy sous vide version I had at Sticky Rice in Grand Central Market the week before.

Khao man gai, quite similar to Hainanese chicken, is an obsession I picked up from a food truck in Portland. It involves poached chicken, rice cooked in chicken stock, fat, and garlic, a clear brothy soup, cucumbers, and a fermented soy dipping sauce. Hainanese chicken involves a chili laden soy sauce and ginger oil sauce.  This khao man gai is from the late night Sanamluang Cafe. It was a bit dry particularly compared to the fancy sous vide version I had at Sticky Rice in Grand Central Market the week before.  Being able to get it at 1 AM makes it pretty great though.

I found Siam Sunset while looking for some Chinese/Taiwanese breakfast items I love and stumbled upon this amazing two page menu.  Where else can you eat a full non-fast food menu for under 5 bucks?  There's even mildly terrifying fried mussels on the other page.

I found Siam Sunset while looking for some Chinese/Taiwanese breakfast items I love and stumbled upon this amazing two page menu. Where else can you eat a full non-fast food menu for under 5 bucks? There’s even mildly terrifying fried mussels on the other page.

A congee chock full of delicious poached egg and super soft pork ribs washed down with a fresh coconut juice.  The Thai guy next to me got a whole coconut, mine comes in a cup with the flesh pre scooped out for me.

Siam Sunset’s congee (rice soup) chock full of poached egg and super soft pork ribs washed down with a fresh coconut juice. The Thai guy next to me got a whole coconut, mine comes in a cup with the flesh scooped out for me.

I could pretend I'm somewhere else or another meal, but this is totally still the same meal at Siam Sunset.  Stubby Chinese style donuts with condensed milk and dou fa, soft tofu in ginger sauce with fried bits.

I could pretend I’m somewhere else or another meal, but this is totally still the same meal at Siam Sunset. Stubby Chinese style donuts with condensed milk and dou fa, soft tofu in ginger sauce with fried bits.  So despite ordering enough for more than one, I still want to go back to Siam Sunset to try their khao man gai and the $3.95 menu.

I also explored the markets of the area.  Bahn Kanom Cafe has a delicious array of desserts and snacks of both hot, cold, and pre-packaged varieties.  They just got mango sticky rice in stock which comes with a whole mango and coconut milk in a separate container.  They are also open until 1 or 2 am, which is wonderful.  Of the two supermarkets, I prefer Silom Supermarket over Bangkok Market which is a little further out of Thai Town.  The deli hot foods, curry pastes, and noodle selection at Silom were much better at this bigger store.  I did not check out the much smaller Bangluck market.

After three months in Vietnam, I know I didn’t try everything available so I know I must’ve only scratched the surface after a month in Thailand.  I’m glad I get to explore some of those options in Los Angeles.

The irony of living somewhere is that the tourists go out of their way to see the cultural landmarks and most residents don’t ever make the time.  So being a native, I’ve never taken the time to go see Watts Towers.  It likely does not help that the first thing most people think of in LA when you say Watts is not “giant folk art monument”.  I took the opportunity this month of being near a metro rail stop of taking the easy trip down.  It may not be the most common thing to be taking the subway in LA yet, but at least it was featured a good bit in Her.

Ha, like anyone follows this rule.

Ha, like anyone follows this rule.

The towers are a labor of love completely made by Simon Rodia during and in-between the two world wars over 33 years.  The man built 10 story towers without any scaffolding or help and only stopped because he fell off one day.  He went through two marriages and some serious alcoholism before devoting his life to this one task.

Ten stories of handmade cement, metal bars, and found items.

Ten stories of handmade cement, metal bars, and found items.

He was inspired by the spires and domes of the churches, festivals, and buildings of his youth in Italy. The whole thing looks like a boat if you see it from a certain angle, the tall towers forming its mast.

How the heck did he pour the cement like this?

How the heck did he pour the cement like this?  You can see how much detail work he put into each bit.

He was recycling (or upcycling?) with found items way before it was a thing.

He was recycling (or upcycling?) with found items way before it was a thing.  He found things along rail tracks, beaches, or just wherever he walked.  People also donated extra plates and he brought home things from his tile laying job.

He was inspired by the great thinking men of the past but couldn’t even read himself.  It’s quite impressive what he did with just the drive to make something for so long.

He really seems to like hearts.

He really seems to like hearts.

Seriously, what's with all the hearts?  He used fencing and pipe spigots to create designs in the ground and walls.  He must have done it pretty fast if he got this many designs in.

Seriously, what’s with all the hearts? He used fencing and pipe spigots to create designs in the ground and walls. He must have done it pretty fast if he got this many designs in.

Simon Rodia signed his name with the tools he used to build the towers.  He only used these tools and his hands to accomplish everything.

Simon Rodia signed his name with the tools he used to build the towers. He only used these tools and his hands to accomplish everything.

It was named "Nuestro Pueblo", or our town in Spanish.  He invited the neighborhood to use it as a church and location for celebrations like quinceaneras.

It was named “Nuestro Pueblo”, or our town in Spanish. He invited the neighborhood to use it as a church and location for celebrations like quinceaneras.

While the metro light rail runs pretty close to this area now, the red cars used to run right by it.  Rodia wanted to make something that made the people riding to the far edges of Los Angeles (this is pretty far out) wonder what in the world this structure could be.

The whole thing.  I can't believe that's ten stories.

The whole thing. I can’t believe that’s ten stories.

They give tours a few weekdays and during the weekend.  I managed to catch an accidental private tour with the friendly docent.  LACMA also has people there restoring this sort of hidden treasure.  They have two galleries and a video made while Rodia was still alive playing.  There’s also a jazz festival that occurs there in the fall, supposedly the biggest in all of Los Angeles.  How did I manage to run all over the world and miss this awesome spot in my own backyard?  Sometimes it just takes that extra effort, or a visitor or two, to see your own home in a new light.

After a year and a half on the road, this is the most time I’ve spent in one city.  My activities were less blog exciting as I explored what I would like to be when I grow up.  I returned to America because although I enjoy exploring new places, I was itching to have a home again and to make some stuff instead of just consuming everyone else’s cultures.

The studio doesn't want us putting video cilps online.  Hopefully a still with a classy MTV style pixel blur is better.

The studio doesn’t want us putting video cilps online. A still with a classy MTV style pixel blur will have to do.

I had studied computer animation in college and I wish I had taken more traditional animation classes while they are still available.  I decided to amend that now by taking a class on something I’ve always loved, stop motion animation.  I thought it was the same thing as claymation, but I quickly learned it is not as we started working with puppets at the studio that makes Robot Chicken.  I had a lot of fun relearning some of the basics and a lot of character animation I did not know.  It became apparent pretty quickly that everyone else there was a professional animator or at least somehow involved with an animation studio.  I never really thought about how insular the animation industry is, not so different from the video games world.  Although I will always love animation, I reached the same conclusion I had reached about it years ago in college.  This is not a career for me.  What else then?

I spend a lot of my time cooking and eating so I’ve always wondered if I should go to cooking school.  Instead of paying a bunch to find out if that was something I wanted to do, I found someone I know to let me work in a kitchen.

Not at all from the bakery I was at.

Not at all from the bakery I was at.  Oddy I don’t have any pictures of the baked goods I made at the bakery.

While I still greatly enjoy cooking at home, I’m not cut out to be throwing around huge bags of flour and giant trays in the speedy environment of a production kitchen.  I never really acclimated to all the allergies and restrictions of the bakery I was at either, which may explain my lack of delicious looking photos.  At least now I know for sure this is also not a career for me.

I didn’t spend the whole year exploring new careers though.  Even in cities I have lived in for a long time there are always new exciting events to try.

The MP3 Experiment was in town to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

The MP3 Experiment was in town to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

I’m very interested in participatory experiences so I was excited to see the MP3 Experiment was finally in Los Angeles when I was around.  Over a hundred people word headphones and listened to the same mp3 give instructions so that we operated as a semi-coherent flash mob.  At one point only one ear was used and the crowd split into various groups.  The event ended with a bubble blow up as seen in the picture and cupcakes for all.

Sometimes you make things for the evening.  This is a pinata from an Etsy + CAFAM craft night.

Sometimes you make things for the evening. This is a pinata from an Etsy + CAFAM craft night.

Learning weeks and month long things was very fun but also very tiring so it was helpful to do some quicker crafts as well.  Luckily there are events like the Craft And Folk Art Museum’s monthly collaborative craft nights so that I can learn how to make things like pinatas.  I’m pretty sure it’s also a thinly veiled open bar combined with a family event.

Being in one country or state does not mean I’m always in the same city.  I split my time between my last home of San Francisco and Los Angeles, where I am from. I guess some travel habits, like not being in one place, are hard to break.

Ah San Francisco, how I don't miss your weather.  That's Sutro Tower being swallowed by Karl The Fog.  Yes it has a name, and a Twitter.

Ah San Francisco, how I don’t miss your weather. That’s Sutro Tower being swallowed by Karl The Fog. Yes it has a name, and a Twitter.

I visited several times for various reasons.  Sometimes it was to catch friends before they moved or left on their own round the world travels.  I also participated in the Come Out and Play festival this year which was quite fun.  The actual event is blogged about over in my work blog.  I just like the excuse to explore the beautiful murals of the southern Mission District.  Some of the artists do not seem particularly friendly about having photos taken of their art so the best way to see it all is to go for yourself.

The Precita Eyes Mural Center told me this one was getting destroyed pretty quickly so I should see it while I could.  Ah the nature of outdoor murals.

The Precita Eyes Mural Center told me this one was getting destroyed pretty quickly so I should see it while I could. Ah the nature of outdoor murals.

I liked how expansive some of the murals are.

I liked how expansive some of the murals are.

I did not live in San Francisco that long, although I feel like I saw a lot of things.  There is always more hiding to be discovered.

A windmill in western Golden Gate Park.

A windmill in western Golden Gate Park.

While I was only in San Francisco for weeks at a time, I felt like they were much like my life there, crammed full of activity.  It is a vibrant city full of so many weird things going on at once.

Terrifying.

Terrifying.

It feels harder to know when to stop and blog when I am not physically changing locations every few days.  Hopefully this year brings more exciting things to explore and learn, and I’ll remember to blog it more often.