Peahens on my roof

Filed under: animals, so. cal — jlm @ 20:28

This dusk, some of the Pasadena peahens decided to go scampering around above my and my neighbors’ ceilings. They’re pretty large birds, so I could hear them up there clearly!
[Peahen on neighbor's roof]


Day in the life post

Filed under: biking, so. cal — jlm @ 13:50

Not my usual day, so perhaps postworthy.

Last night I tried to head out to Hollywood, but my car wouldn’t start. Didn’t even do the “rrr-rrr” thing, and I verified I hadn’t left the lights on. So much for hitting the nightlife, spent the evening online instead. This morning was my annual physical, including a cholesterol test, so I was fasting that evening/this morning. I didn’t sleep well, woke up at 5 o’clock, had trouble getting back to bed and my alarm woke me. (Usually I have no problem sleeping and I wake on my own before the alarm.) The physical went fine, weight stable, no alarm bells, the doctor gave me cream for my athlete’s foot and probiotics for my GI. Get home, call Gabriel Towing, they refer me to Hillcrest Towing, who say they’ll be there in 15 minutes, and 15 minutes later they’re there. Amazing, I’m impressed, I’ve never had a tow come promptly before. Go to Subway for a lunch to break my fast (any “healthiness” of their sandwiches likely lost by me opting for the drink & cookies, ’cause I’m hungry). Bike around southern Pasadena, a light rain starts, I get twisted around by the twisty streets around Oak Grove and Oak Knoll. It’s a lot harder to navigate under low cloud cover, can’t see shadows or the mountains. Go home, wet, and the dealer says the non-hybrid-system engine battery bricked, looks like I’m out around $200 for repairs and towing.


Urban peafowl sighting

Filed under: animals, biking, so. cal — jlm @ 13:11

I was just biking along Hill, by the PCC lots, and there braving traffic was a peacock and peahen. Bright blue necks, long (furled) train on the cock, quite the surprising sight, traffic stopped for the spectacle of them crossing the street.


Update on the Arroyo

Filed under: biking, so. cal — jlm @ 11:26

I rode the Arroyo path again today. This time the stream was lower, and a lot clearer, but not yet back to its normal level of transparency. The “stream of sludge” was pretty worrying for a while.


What’s wrong with the Arroyo Seco?

Filed under: so. cal — jlm @ 13:32

Today the Arroyo Seco stream was dirtier than I’ve ever seen it. The water was fairly high, a little more than yesterday, but while yesterday the water was clear, today it was nearly black with sludge.
What happened? The radio news had the answer — there’d been some mudslides upstream, which apparently dumped tons of silt into the stream.


Angeles Crest still closed

Filed under: so. cal — jlm @ 09:03

A friend told me he’d gone hiking around Angeles Crest.
“I thought it was still closed.” “Nope!”

Sure ’nuff, I check the CalTrans and CHP websites, and they show Hwy. 2 as having no closures. This morning I get my camera and hiking gear to tour the devistation.

Sure ’nuff, when I get to the National Forest entrance, the road is closed.
I’m going to have to ask him about it…


Pasadena Chalk Festival

Filed under: so. cal — jlm @ 09:01

Pasadena had its chalk art festival this last weekend, so what better way to give my brand new camera (a Canon PowerShot A540) a spin?
Photos here. The last photos taken by my old camera (an Olympus D-340L) in Turkey before it died are here.


Sea of gold

Filed under: biking, so. cal — jlm @ 17:00

It was a nice warm day today (unlike all of last week), so I rode down to the beach this afternoon as a break from work. Now, I’d heard the phrase “sea of gold” applied to the ocean before, but this was the first time I’d seen it. The angle of the sun made the vast expanse of the sea look like how you might imagine molten gold*. It was beautiful. It was also painful to look at because it was so bright. In ten minutes only the distant ocean looked golden, and in fifteen the entire effect was gone.


* Actual molten gold looks glowy red-orange, like pretty much any other molten metal, because the black-body radiation exceeds the reflected light.


Running on empty

Filed under: biking, so. cal — jlm @ 12:08

Biking from Union Station to Pasadena at 1:30 at night when you’ve already biked 30 miles that day is like an hour of some kind of Greek hell. Not painful, but dark, and cold, and lonely, and tiring, block after block after block gradually uphill, with no sign of progress.

The MTA ticket machines are pretty cheeky letting you buy a ticket after the last train has left due to the holiday schedule, with no signs up saying the last train will leave at 11:50.

Encountering a Winchell’s on the final leg up Fair Oaks was welcome, though I could have used it earlier.

Jacob’s route from getting from Union Station to Pasadena when you’re bone tired and don’t want any big hills:

  • Union Station is on Alameda. Take this north a couple blocks to where Main St. veers off to the right.
  • Take Main through the industrial area into Lincoln Park. This goes through a pass in the Lincoln Park hills, so you avoid climbs like you’d get taking say Broadway.
  • Main turns into Valley at Mission St. Turn left (north) here.
  • When Mission meets up with Huntington, get on Huntington and ride it through El Sereno into South Pasadena.

If these directions make any sense to you, you already know how to get from South Pas to whatever part of Pasadena you live in. For me, this was taking Fair Oaks in. These directions are poor at encountering all-night victuals depots, so could use some refinement here. (Maybe Broadway to get some food, then cut down to Main St. for the pass?)

My legs and butt still hurt.

More upbeat post coming soon…


President Thai’s back

Filed under: biking, so. cal — jlm @ 13:48


The famous President Thai restraunt is back in operation.
Still have cheap lunch specials. Dining area is about 2½ times its old size, and lots of parking. No bicycle parking, still. (In the kitchen: Employee: “Do you think we should get a bike rack?”
Manager: “We have time, it’s too hot to bike in the summer.”
Employee: “Well, someone has locked their bike to the gate.”
Waiter enters, to refill his water pitcher, “That guy on table 17 has drunk 8 glasses of water!”
Manager: “Probably just some westerner who ordered ‘spicy’.”
Cook: “Curry for table 17 up!”)

If you don’t know where it is, take San Pasqual west. After you cross Rosemead, you’ll crash into a building because San Pasqual ends at Rosemead. That building is President Thai.

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