Sunday, April 13, 2008

Cute gal, hiking

We hired a car the other day, a cute little Chevy we nicknamed Hamster. The rental guy offered us a really good deal on a huge tank-like vehicle, and looked at us a bit oddly when we said actually, we'd rather have that little white hatchback in the corner. Nerys has been doing all the driving, because though Tiny, she is also Brave. I, on the other hand, have had the demeanour of Alarmed Chicken at the very thought of taking the wheel in LA. However, Nerys set off home at dark o'clock this morning, so finally, I did it. I drove in LA. And actually, it was pretty OK. The oddest thing was driving an automatic. I couldn't help my left foot twitching every now and then, and my hand going for the gearstick, but it wasn't anywhere near as scary as I thought it might be. So, sorry Nerys, for being a wimp while you were here!
So, having mastered going forwards and stopping, I drove all the way down Santa Monica Boulevard to the Pacific Coast Highway and thence to Topanga Canyon Boulevard and eventually to the Trippet Ranch parking lot on the Topanga State Park. I set out on the Musch Meadow Trail, which was fairly low level and gentle, and as you'd guess from the name, made up of meadows:

and also some nice leafy glades, vital for shady moments as LA is having a heatwave at the moment:

I got to Eagle Junction and still felt like walking, so decided to carry on going, and was walking past a group of women resting at the camping ground while their leader was giving them a bit of a talk about the trails. "If you carry on walking like this cute gal here," she said, as they all turned to look at me and waved, "you'll get to Eagle Rock". So, I thought I'd go to Eagle Rock. "There are a few steep bits," she continued, "but it's a great walk."

Did I mention it's a heatwave here? Or that there are steep bits? And the steep bits happen to be above the shady bits, and climbing a steep trail is the very hot heat is absolutely bloody knackering. However, it was worth it:

There are views towards the ocean and also panoramic views inland and over Topanga Canyon:

It took about an hour and 20 minutes up, and an hour and ten down, so I ended up hiking for about three hours which was about three times longer than I'd originally thought I'd do, but it was a really great hike and well worth the effort. And I love Topanga.

Then I drove back to West Hollywood, via Sunset Boulevard, and got here with only one "oops I'm stuck in a 'right lane must turn right' lane" - so, driving wasn't too bad at all, and I didn't even once utter the never-to-be-forgotten phrase "Oh my God, I'm bloody driving on the ****ing left hand side!"
Actually, that OMG occurence, which happened shortly before we went to see The Tonight Show on Thursday, just made Keanu's story about biking in Australia ("not that side, this side") that bit funnier.

So, I got back here sweaty, dusty and hot, but pleased not to have damaged anyone or myself or the car. Phew.
Later, met Chris from Million Dollar Screenwriting at Barney's Beanery and had a bite to eat and a really good chat.
And tomorrow's my last day here. Have checked in online, so I basically have all day to do something or other. Wander about, eat salad, and shop, probably. Might go back to Book Soup, which is a fab bookshop on Sunset. And if I can find the place, go to Billy's booksigning.
PS Did I mention that the cute gal was me?


Anonymous Stacie said...

I think I would have stopped and rested at the campground! LOL!

10:38 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Cute Gal! Annabelle here. Good show on taking the wheel and zooming about. Watch it though...I found upon my return I've become something of a she-devil in traffic. I can't understand why everyone is poking along when I want to fly. Speed is more ways than one! *wink*

1:53 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, you ARE a cutie!

I'm glad you finally found your wheels. My "Oh my God, I'm bloody driving on the ****ing left" will hopefully go down as a classic line.

Still jealous you got in a proper hike. Not fair! We'll definitely have to go again.

12:30 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi from NY. Well done! Sounds great. Love from us.

2:40 am  

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