Sunday, January 1, 2017

Touristing in Southern California...

Point Fermin Lighthouse, San Pedro, California
PROOF that I don't JUST look at plants when I travel. Jan's cousin, Kristin, brought us on our last full day to see the Point Fermin lighthouse in San Pedro (pronounced with a long "e" incidentally)--which we toured and climbed to the top story. Built in 1874 when this spot was dozens of miles from civilization, it now sits in the middle of a charming park with the beautiful fig trees featured in the previous post, some charming cottage like gardens and melting views in all directions to the sea...

The seagulls obviously enjoy the view regularly!

Not far from the lighthouse park there's yet ANOTHER park with a lavishly decorated pavilion that was donated to America (and the city of L.A.) by the people of South Korea after the Korean war: built and painted by Koreans, it is perched on an even higher bluff above the lighthouse: the acres of grass around the pavilion were thick with picknickers and kite flyers--although the gentle breeze wasn't ideal for kites, alas! Perfect mid-winter day in my book however!

The scudding clouds were perfect backdrop!

The bell was enormous! I wouldn't want to be too near on the rare occasions (Armistice days in both countries, and Independence days, I believe) when it is rung with the battering ram partly visible to the right.

A view towards Catalina island to the West of the pavilion...

Jan peeking behind the two strange sculptures that remind me of Don Martin's cartoon figures in Mad Magazine...

Not far away we stopped at a viewpoint with spectacular views of San Pedro and the Marina and docks there....The wonderful South African Tecoma capensis (lumped into the pantropical genus recently from "Tecomaria") creates a wonderful foreground planting, don't you think? It is Universal in California landscapes, but I never tire of it.

Tecoma capensis

And a bloom on Dietes iridioides, another lovely South African irid. This everblooming clumper is used everywhere here: I can't say I object.

And nearby, a wonderful mass of Mexican Solandra maxima delights: the flowers are so massive, with such a strange hue...

You can just get a hint of the San Bernadino mountains in the distance--capped with snow: this is a memory that will warm me for some time this chilly winter now that I'm back home! (California is such a delightful escape for us in the winter months)....

I  suppose I am irrepressible: my one feeble attempt at touristing ends up with plants all over again!


  1. Very nice series of posts on Southern California and you're not making fun of us as most people do. I've lived in Peedro (you got it right) and it is a good place to be out of the smog.

    1. I have never heard anyone make fun of California. I can only imagine their motivation would be jealousy.

      I am surprised Panayoti returns home after having love affairs with all these wonderful places. It must be hard to come back in winter to the land of constantly running humidifiers and itchy skin.

    2. The itchy skin is right on target. We don't use humidifiers, alas (probably should!). It has been a dry fall and only one significant snowfall this winter thus far. But the sun is awesome for the spirits here, and the crisp mountain views are pretty awesome, James...and when I drove past a piece of prairie yesterday, it was glorious in the late backlight.

  2. I have come to love Southern California more and more: people can make all the fun of it they like--the world is still moving there in droves! Alas. If I could afford to, I might too!


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