goodness, manfolk

Ireland: Day 4

cold wind, warm sun

The weather today was just perfect.  The air was crisp, but the sun was shining all day with hardly a cloud in the sky.  Boyfriend and I walked to a park that was recommended to us, and sat on a bench for a while and watched a couple little girls (sisters) play and race.  One of them declared suddenly, “We must kill the dog!”  The dog was pretty cute, not sure what he did to deserve a death sentence.

We walked across the street to the National Museum of Ireland where we saw, among other things, The Taking of Christ by Caravaggio.  I could’ve sworn it was stolen, but there it was.  It was a nice little collection for a museum that charges no fee at the door.

everything was green

Just north of that was Lincoln’s Inn, where we had sandwiches and soup, and discussed how awesome we are.  Boyfriend did a little dance in his chair and when I was done laughing, I mentioned, as I have before, that I’m pretty sure I’d like to marry him some time in the future, if he keeps doing stuff like that.

Then we walkedforever to the Guinness brewery (two miles, but it felt like longer) and went through the tour of the place, which was highly informative and actually pretty interesting.  Tickets are 13 Euros, and allow for a tour, a lesson on how to pour a pint of Guinness (which takes 119 seconds and two separate pourings to complete, in addition to putting your thumb on the harp, filling to the top of the next harp, etc.), which you can then drink, plus a free pint upstairs at the Gravity Bar way at the top of the building with 360 degree views of the city and green hills beyond.

we poured this one together (Boyfriend did the first part, I topped it off)

We took a rail train four stops east, then walked to the “Oriental” area, where we got some boring noodle soup.  Then we headed back to Gogarty’s pub to get more oysters (a dozen this time!) and a cup of Guinness with some live music.  At 11pm a male and female dancer who used to work on Riverdance showed up to dance for us.  I couldn’t believe how lightning fast the woman was.  Obviously the man was impressive too, but the woman was crazy good.

It’s well past my bedtime now, and I’m looking forward to flying to Scotland tomorrow.  Dublin has been fantastic.  Next time I’ll have to rent a car and spend some time in the countryside.


goodness, life

UPS adventure!

I love having random adventures.  Discovering amazing little pockets of Los Angeles that I knew nothing about doesn’t happen every day; I know this city pretty well.  So I get pretty excited when I encounter something unexpected, which usually results in an…


Why is it always the case that I have adventures like this when I’m forced to go pick up a package?  This time it was a UPS facility northeast of downtown that couldn’t seem to properly deliver a box of soap from Bigelowe & Co. (for Boyfriend) that I had bought a month prior (and had already been stolen off my doorstep once).

When I got there, I discovered while waiting in the lobby these neat little rolly things they use to roll packages around with ease.

i played with them when noone was looking

On my drive there, I passed this weird little sign that said “Apothecary Fairy,” which is apparently a skin-care company that sells lotions, soaps, rubs, candles and other stinky crap to scare men out of your bathroom.

semi-legible = edgy!

I decided to pull over on my way back to investigate.  I’m so glad I did, because I discovered The Brewery, which is an ART COLONY, which I put in caps to try to keep myself from laughing when I say it or read it (to no avail).  An ART COLONY (teehee!) is (as far as I can tell) like an ant colony, but instead of ants working endlessly on unique, but in the end pointless creations, it’s people (zing!).  And they live in this area of Los Angeles I’ve never seen before.  And I’m kinda jealous, because it looks awesome.

pfft, obviously

There’s a really neat balance of metal and organic sitting around, enjoying a kind of harmony.

"oh, is there ivy taking over the building? I didn't notice; I was so busy CREATING."

Having said that, everything looks very intentionally abandoned, which I kinda hate because then it’s fake, and loses it’s mystery.  It’s like steampunk threw up all over everyone’s front lawn, then sat and rusted for a while.

seriously... what is that doing there.

But happening upon an area like this by chance was still super fun.  There was a little cafe, and this miniature grassy park area!

surely, the small stone bench at the other end was littered with cigarette butts

And a tiny rocket car!  I really wanted to ask someone about this, but I figured I was already potentially trespassing on private property just by being there, so drawing attention to the fact that I (an ordinary outsider) was taking dozens of photos of their shit was not on the menu.

i could have escaped in it! p-chow! zoom!

And a Caterpillar!  Like everything else on the property, I wondered how it had ended up there, but somehow this one totally fascinated me.  Who had driven in last?  What did they haul around?  Did it still work?  It had to weigh a ton, how would they move it?

curiouser and curiouser

And this old car! This one looks totally intentionally placed, and didn’t exactly charm the pants off me.  Old cars are just so fun to look at though, I couldn’t resist.

i like to think the palm tree and car struck up an unlikely friendship

Next to the car was a Mexican man who asked me for the time.  I said, “A las una,” then, “Puedo tomar un foto del coche?”  Hooray!  I speak the Spanish!  Watchless Mexican did not give two shits that I had mastered Spanish I, and went back to shining these pieces of copper, seemingly for an art project.

i resisted the urge to TOUCH ALL OF THEM

Near the copper-shining-Mexican was a giant piece of what can only be described as a huge piece of totally unnecessary metal machinery.  I chuckled aloud as I wondered how many people had accidentally backed up into it as they parked in one of the few official parking lots I could find.

railroad machinery?

I realized as soon as I set eyes on it that the Brewery smoke stack is a landmark I’ve seen before, though I can’t recall where.  I had suddenly found familiar ground in a wasteland of intentionally derelict buildings and pieces of Americana.

ironically, there were no brewerys nearby...

It topped off this really neat, giant building which may have honestly been a steel refinery at some point, and has actually been abandoned, as interior photos clearly showed.

free tetanus shot with every lease signing!

I found an official entrance to the compound (which distinctly said “PRIVATE PROPERTY”), and right outside, down the block was an Aikido dojo.

it too looked semi-abandoned

I threw on my hazard lights, jumped out to grab an inevitably poorly-written brochure, and drove toward a busy street, thinking my thoroughly satisfying adventure had drawn to a close.  But no!  If you had told me that the last photo I would take that day was of a giant, half-finished carousel horse surrounded by shipping crates, I would have said, “You’re crazy, Sam I Am.”

and it looked just pissed, btw

I drove a little, stopped to wander around and take some photos, then jumped back in the car to find the next out of place, rusty thing.  I was a little late to get pho with my dad in Silverlake at Pho Cafe, but it was worth it, and then I got to see my dad.

What a great adventure!