( Poet's Choice: Asian-American Poets )

By conservative estimates the mangroves will not return
in this century. Neither will the eyes, the limbs twisted like roots.
Today Viet lies deep in the mosquito sickness -- if he dies,
Duc dies too. There will be no time for separation, no time to airlift
the split being into surgery. Instead, the living half will wait passively
for what invariably will come rolling on, the roofs filling with people.
I didn't ask to survive.

--Quan Barry

We're at my brother-in-law's house in Sherman Oaks, back from dinner (vegetarian Mexican) and playing in a local park after an afternoon swimming in their pool; we headed briefly for the zoo, which was very hot and very crowded, and when they gave us a hard time about accepting our reciprocal membership with the National Zoo, we said the heck with it and came back to swim. The kids are getting along in stellar fashion despite the fact that they only met once before, at David and Molly's wedding sixteen months ago. But Lukas, the baby, is adorable, Adam and Maddie are having a great time torturing each other and Noelle and I have been discussing our mutual desire to see Pirates of the Caribbean.

Tomorrow I'm seeing [livejournal.com profile] divineway and then my cousin and her mother, hopefully at David's restaurant!
California Plush )

Still at my uncle's in Santa Clarita, leaving in a little while for my brother-in-law's in Sherman Oaks, then we're all taking all of our kids to the zoo and maybe out to dinner at my brother-in-law's restaurant, Real Food Daily (superb vegan food). I forgot to mention that on the Fourth we got the amusement of seeing him on a local morning news show where they had invited several chefs to talk about grilling for the holiday; David was there to represent the alternative food contingent, though they kept upstaging him with a bikini fashion show and he looked most bemused! He was in full chef regalia and must have been melting even at that early hour. Below, one of the Foleys' dogs dealing with the heat.

Yesterday we had a big get-together with most of my L.A. relatives, including both my cousins, their husbands and the older one's new baby, my uncle's wife's brother and all the kids. It's VERY hot and the kids wilted at the park with the pirate ship jungle gym, but the hills are beautiful and I love seeing all the spiny flowers blooming everywhere. We're off right now before it gets absurdly hot to see Mickey and Lesley's new house that they're building up in horse country.

Independence )

Have seen fireworks from a bridge in L.A.! We are going out to breakfast in the Valley, then are off to visit relatives in Santa Clarita for the rest of the day. Have a lovely Saturday everyone!

Trees in the Bonito Lava Flow, Sunset
Survey of Debris )

Greetings from sunny SoCal, where we have just gotten out of the pool and are getting ready to barbecue. I am not sure yet where or if we will be seeing fireworks tonight, as the local ones have been cancelled due to increasing restrictions on which organizations may possess and launch fireworks, but I expect we will all be sitting around bashing Bush's policies or some other patriotic activity. This has been a very low-key day, swimming, eating and catching up on news with old friends.

Touristy Ghost Town, Calico

Fellow citizens: Happy Independence Day! Non-U.S. residents: Have a great weekend! [livejournal.com profile] divineway: see you Monday!
To You )

Vegas to L.A. )

Star Trek: The Experience upstairs, Quark's Bar downstairs!

From the sublime to the ridiculous: the entrance to the Star Trek Experience (Quark's Bar downstairs, the extravaganza upstairs). A Trekkie fantasy in the middle of a city built entirely for entertainment, where parking is free, drinks are cheap and the swimming pools are incredible...
A Postcard From The Volcano )

Last night at the Canyon, the sky was perfectly clear and I saw the Milky Way as spectacularly as I ever have with the naked eye. So I was up much too late star- and deer-watching, and today we got up early to see the canyon in morning sunlight, though it was already bright before 6. There was a condor flying around just below the lip of the canyon which was my thrill of the trip. We had breakfast in one of the Bright Angel lodge restaurants, walked around the canyon rim a bit, bought sun hats which I should have done the day before, then packed up and drove to Kingman, Arizona where we had lunch en route to Las Vegas. The landscape changed from heavily forested to hilly to flat desert with cactus and yucca to barren rock as we briefly entered California, which is the most direct route to Vegas from the Grand Canyon.

Viva Las Vegas )

Thanks so much for all the good wishes, everyone to whom I owe a note. Below, the thrill of my trip so far (besides my anniversary present):

...a condor in the Canyon!
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