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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Where have you been? Did you fall off a bridge or something?


Sorry I've gone dark for a week. It's been a whirlwind, but I didn't want to sit down and merely write diary entries, because who wants to read THAT kind of blog? Last Saturday, I was in the car at the butt-crack of dawn:
That's after being in the car an hour. It was my first coherent thought of the morning: "Maybe you should record this madness!" At that time I usually only think in fragments: Early. Damn. Contacts. Coffee. Why?

I love that one of the first pics I took is not of the beauty of nature, but of Native American Love. Do you think that some Cherokee woman was like, "I've got the best Christmas present for my boyfriend's truck."

She looks like I do in the morning. And what's distracting him up on the far left? What can I say? Love makes you do crazy things... like digging into a tree with a pocket knife.
I'm not knocking it. I don't know why, but there is something terribly romantic about combining your love with God's creation.
So here we are, and it is 6:30 AM and no, we are not hunting Edward. Different Forks.
Ahh... yeah for morning pics.
So apparently we weren't the only ones crazy enough to be up this early. Here's a whole grip of us hiking through one of the most beautiful hikes 40 minutes outside of L.A.
There was even a dog up this early:
Me: Hey, little guy! I feel your pain. Tell your mom to spike your kibble with Starbucks -- it does wonders for the grump-factor.

Here I am on a mission to avoid getting wet before 10 AM. Mornings + cold = Unhappy Girl

Notice the genuine smile comes out only with the sun.
But once again, enough "diary" pictures.
Here are the only two things I remember from 6th grade science camp.

This is sagebrush.


Take a bunch of it and roll it vigorously between your hands.

Then inhale.

Ahh... smells like a newly mopped kitchen floor.

Here's the fact I learned: Native Americans used to use sagebrush as deodorant. Not even kidding.

This is the lemonade berry bush. Actually I'm not sure what its name is, but this is what it looks like.

Here are the berries. They look like corn nuts, but don't chew them. That would be gross. Take a handful, and pop them in your mouth, and suck on them.
WHEW! SOUR! Second Fact from science camp: The Native Americans used to make lemonade from these berries.

Some kids remember the marine biology from CIMI science camp on Catalina Island. Invertebrates, algae, plankton, island ecology, I mean, you name it, they taught it. What did I retain? Indian lemonade and deodorant. Money well spent, parents.

This is a yucca plant.
I have no idea what it does, but doesn't it look like a Koosh Ball? Don't grab it like one. It's not the "kooshiest" in texture. But it kind of looks like a giant pinapple is buried underneath, doesn't it?
Okay, so why do I have a picture of a man lecturing us on the top of this bridge and placing his hands on his knees as if he's showing us how to prepare a jump off of the bridge. And what's that cord by his right foot? And what are these strange belts greeting us?


Ah, yes. What five mile hike to a bridge would be complete without an insane jump off of it?

Here's some cool facts about The Bridge to Nowhere. It was built in 1936, and there was a road heading all the way up here.

In 1938, a crazy flood came through and washed the entire road away. Here's what's left of the road:

They received 26 inches of rain in 24 hours. And good old engineering hung in there through it all. What was left? A bridge. Literally to nowhere. Bungee America is the only state-licensed Bungee Company (and they have a perfect safety record, I might add). They actually bought all the land around the bridge and are sanctioned as an amusement park. The Bungee off the Bridge to Nowhere is actually licensed as a roller coaster!

Let me tell you how hot these harnesses make you look! Watch out!


Here's Mark's beautiful dive:

Bungee Jumping brings out some strange things in you. Apparently, I am prone to violence:



This second jump, for some reason, was so much scarier than the first, because he assured me that if I followed his instructions of jumping backwards, I would come very close to hitting the bridge. And this was somehow a good thing! Watch how I disappear.

That's the part when you think you are going to do a Wile E. Coyote Splat against the underside of the bridge. But you don't. It's all an illusion. An illusion made out of stone that survived 26 inches of rain in 24 hours heading for my face at an alarmingly fast rate.



Suffice it to say, Los Angeles has some great secret spots, and this is definitely one of them. If you want a great day trip, I highly recommend it.

And besides, who knew California had these guys?

Yeah, that thing the size of a small horse with the two conch-shells sticking out of its head? That's a long-horn sheep. A LONG-HORN SHEEP! Or maybe it's called a big-horn sheep. Or a ram. Whatever. Can we just bask in the coolness of that for a minute? Forty minutes away from the smog and traffic that is L.A., you will find sheep the size of mules running up rock CLIFFS with hooves for feet (can we say "no traction"?) and bowling balls for heads and SOMEHOW THEY DON'T TIP OVER!

P.S. If someone can tell me the difference between a ram, a long-horn, and a big-horn, please comment below. You probably learned it at 6th grade science camp.

I'm up in Utah, and I'm on my way to see some plays. Yesterday, I saw two: Foxfire and As You Like It. I'd sit and blog more, but I've got two plays on the schedule today too, and I've gotta read up on my Sparknotes regarding Comedy of Errors. More about that later.

4 comments:

  1. That is a busy week you've been having! A feel positively lazy now, sitting on my ass tapping away on the keyboard ....

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  2. Ha ha - That sounds like a lovely day, E.D.

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  3. In the second clip, why do you keep putting your hands on your butt?

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  4. By "second clip" I mean "second video of you bungee jumping"

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