last sunset at the canal
Day 96 Malibu, Venice Canals
On Tuesday mornings, at 7.30 am, the street in front of our Venice garage/shack gets swept. We wake up at the crack of dawn and blearily circulate round Whole Foods, buying Christmas groceries to bring to Palm Springs. We come to blows over dessert. It had to be over dessert. Rob wants to make a chocolate bowl and fill it with ice cream. I desperately want a cherry pie because 'Murica. In the end, my cherry pie wins the day. I gaze at the chocolate stand for a long time. There's nothing under US$3.99.
Killing time before we can park the car and get in a quick snooze to compensate for the early wake-up call, we drive thirty minutes to Malibu along the Pacific Coast Highway. The signs promise 27 Miles of Scenic Beauty. It's alright, guys. It's alright. Huge stretches of the sea views are blocked by properties built right on the beach. We pass by Pepperdine University, crouched on the hill with blankets of glittery aquamarine ocean to look at. I laugh, just like a laughed at the University of Hawaii. Who can study in a place like this? You're setting yourself up for failure.
parking lot is empty when we pull in. We don't even bother to pay for parking. Peering down from the steep cliffs onto the beach, there's no one for miles. We descend down the uneven sandy path and wooden stairs.
The sand is being battered by the waves, the beach eaten up by a high tide that sends sprays of salt with its clashes against the rocks. There's a salty sea water haze and hulking white mansions on stilts in the distance. I imagine being in the nearest one. It would feel like you were captain of an unmoving boat on the sea.
LA most likely has the best Mexican food outside of Mexico. On an assuming Santa Monica street, more inland than near the beach, we park right outside
and the lady with very-precisely pencilled arched eyebrows takes our orders. Pushed up against a wall, there's salsa, carrot & jalapeno pickles, salsa verde, and chili sauce. There's a mix of beachy California girls, hungover guys, and working-class Hispanic men. Next to the cook, there's an enormous mountain of tortillas on a trolley. We slam down our breakfast burritos and watermelon frescas. Sitting in a car sure does make you hungry in LA. The carrots have been swimming in jalapeno juice all morning. Rob takes home a baggie.
We laze about for the rest of the morning and much of the afternoon. We're in a burrito haze. We only emerge later, as the sun is setting, to finally walk around the Venice Canals.
. That's the one and only thing I know Ashton Kutcher is good for.
It's perpetually summer in these Canals. There's roses the size of my face. In
. And this late afternoon Southern Californian light makes everything luminous. It's a bit of a dream.
It's our last day in LA.