We had already spent an evening at Fran's hideaway condo near Redondo Beach, but we hadn't actually seen anything outside other than her patio, unless you count the trip Dave made to Panda Express for dinner, so we were eager to get out to the beach. When I say we were near Redondo Beach, I mean we were about 200 steps from a dog-free beach populated by pelicans. I had never seen a live pelican and was confused about their having no pouch but Dave assured me that these were indeed pelicans and if we waited around long enough we'd see the pouch in actual use. I never did. There were plenty of dives, but no successful fishing, on the part of the Redondo Beach pelicans. That didn't take away from the beauty of the water, the saltiness of the pier and the joy of walking on the sand.
Fran and I have been reading each other's blogs for 8 years now, and I knew she worked at a private school,so we were delighted when she was able to give us a tour. I went to a private school for grades 9 to 11 and I thought I knew what to expect, but then, I'd never been in California before. It was like a small village, with a home for the Headmaster, staff residences, playing fields, theatre, gym, brick walking paths, beautiful treed grounds and a wonderful library, with students' (past and present) art everywhere. And the view was breathtaking.
Imagine being gifted with these views over the next two days as we visited the school, the Wayfarere's Chapel designed by Frank Lloyd Wright Jr and a church tucked away in the grandest seaside venue imaginable.
|A memorial to staff members lost on a hiking trip---see the staff?|
|Art from Fran's school|
|Lorna and Dave chat with the driver of this humongous limo|
|The Wayfarers' Chapel|
|Majestic and frightening view|
|Fran and Lorna in a ramble through the grounds of the church|
|the grounds were breathtaking|
|a perfect sunset|
Lorna and Dave as Gourmands
Please don't read too much into that appelation. We were only wanna-be gourmands. Our cousins Gail and Del were the real gourmands, showing us how chic LA folk prefer small plate dining, which was fun and incredibly delicious. (the following week, we got a tour of UCLA where Gail works, which was as good as a backstage tour of the set of The Wizard of Oz, and another chance to be gourmands, at which we were getting better).
Lorna and Dave as non-stereotypical Tourists
You know, we drove around and visited beaches and walked around the Redondo Beach Village, looking at books, eating in fascinating little places that were half-restaurant, half something else like flower shops or quasi-museums, but we just weren't drawn to go to downtown LA, except one afternoon when we ended up in LA rush hour traffic and took refuge in a street mall, with singers and lovers and shoppers who looked an awful lot like the people we can see up on the Sparks St Mall. Of course, it was warmer.