Saturday, March 8, 2014
The recent rainstorms have revealed a rainbow-colored treasure of stones at low tide. These stones that will, in millennia, make the sand.
My morning walk took me by two fishermen, standing in the surf, side by side. I asked them what they were fishing for. Halibut the one man answered. They were friendly, so I asked what they caught. Smelt.
We may come to the ocean’s edge with one goal in mind but end with unexpected gains.
The fishermen were done for the day, but would come back and try again, the persistence of beach culture.
Saturday, February 22, 2014
A Saturday morning drive to the Beach House is typically easier than workweek sojourns. My old car has an antenna to capture AM radio and the news is often good, though the reception changes with signal strength, tall buildings and concrete canyons. When broadcast signals can’t get through it is called interference. Something is interfering with the one signal we want to capture through the air.
In the water the phenomena is visible in the waves. It is called crosscurrents, and creates pretty patterns of crossing arcs close to the shore.
At Beach = Culture, the public use of the natural amenities embodies the spirit of crosscurrents. The policies and regulations that keep fire pits off the beach and the Guest House free and open are responsive to crosscurrents of preservation and access, private rentals and public use.
Complaints about the City requiring pedestrian access or parking permits or public art arise from the perspective of interference. Is there one signal or many? The creative placemaker sees crosscurrents and repurposes them with style.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Saturday, February 15, 2014
Monday, February 10, 2014
The Monday morning crowd is not on the beach, but on bicycles, roller blades and in running shoes along the paved pedestrian path. Not so much inside.
The Monday morning docents at the Marion Davis Guest House had time to discuss their work, this place, and the reasons why people come to ACBH. Santa Monica’s public places are alluring: attractive, safe, clean, with pedestrian amenities and options for activity.
The docents, volunteers with the Santa Monica Conservancy, are the secret spice for the Guest House. Lively, outgoing, informed and just a touch of quirky, the women and men are eager to engage the public. But if you want to walk around yourself, you can do that too. Well trained, with a touch of sass, they want to share the beauty of the beach.