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Monday, January 8, 2018

My blog moved to WordPress

Dear loyal followers,

I moved my blog to my website on WordPress and will add new posts there. Come and visit me there. It's fun!

Christa, The Scrivener

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Los Angeles - a city of urban sprawl and the most exciting as well as quirky attractions! - Part Three

I'm obviously a slow blogger. This post is about the last day of Shawn and my Los Angeles city adventure back in October of 2017. This time, we ventured downtown again, to a historical restaurant/Tiki bar/almost a museum, called Clifton's. Here is some information about the place:

But first we had to find parking and that's one of the problematic sides of downtown Los Angeles. During the day I now take our new Metrolink train from Santa Monica to downtown. In the evening and at night, however, the car feels a little safer. Fortunately, street-smart Shawn was driving and we did find a spot close-by. Well done, Shawn.

And here we were, stuffing ourselves on an elaborate buffet-style dinner.

It wasn't exactly "fine dining" but plentiful and there was an amazing variety of food! Having regained our strength after the hunt for a parking space, we ventured upstairs and checked out the mysterious and glamorous environment and the art works. Here are a few photos:

You can tell that Shawn was overwhelmed!

I don't have more pictures of that evening. I had too much fun and forgot to take pictures, but Shawn did a better job of documenting this amazing place.

Hop on over to his blog!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Los Angeles - a city of urban sprawl and the most exciting as well as quirky attractions! - Part Two

My friend Shawn and I spent a weekend exploring Los Angeles, a city of many surprises. I've lived in the area for many years and I still discover new and interesting spots. Shawn was doing research for some articles for one of his freelance journalist projects and I was tagging along, having fun. While waiting for the Griffith Observatory to open
(see last post:,
we had breakfast in a nearby coffee shop and then checked out another quirky and very interesting place, called Wacko/Soap Plant in Los Angeles. This is a store that sells an amazing collection of magical and crazy stuff as well as sophisticated works of art and some splendid books.

But first we checked out the current art exhibition in the store. I knew of my friend's love of Tiki bars and Tiki drinks and took it for just another one of his many quirks. I have to admit though I've acquired a taste for these Hawaiian inspired drinks myself. What I wasn't familiar with though was the more serious aspect of this international movement of Tiki Art. The exhibition of paintings and sculptures was truly amazing. One of the famous artists among the group is a guy by the name of Shag. More about him here:

And here are a few pictures of the Wacko store and of the art exhibition. It's located at the end of Hollywood Blvd. where it leads into Sunset. Here is the outside--you obviously can't miss it.

And here the inside: paintings and sculptures, the true Tiki phenomena. I was really excited about it!

Above: This is the kind of crazy and magical stuff you can enjoy there.

Below: This is part of the exhibition

Our next stop after Wacko and the Griffith Observatory was Olvera Street in downtown Los Angeles. This part of the city, which is now mainly a tourist attraction, was founded in 1781 and has an interesting and at times controversial history and Latin heritage. More about this here:

We visited Calle Olvera October 21 and the street was already decked out for the Mexican holiday Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) on November 2 and 3. Here are some pictures of the tourist attractions and the more historical buildings.

More follows--another fabulous Los Angeles highlight, Clifton's Cafeteria. Stay tuned!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Los Angeles - a city of urban sprawl and the most exciting as well as quirky attractions!

The week after Shawn and my research/fun trip to Paso Robles, San Luis Obispo, Cambria and Morro Bay, we explored a bunch of exciting places in Los Angeles.

I remember very well when I first came to the United States and traveled through part of the country eons ago, my initial thought was that Los Angeles was the one city in the United States I would never ever want to live in. Famous last words! I still don't enjoy the urban sprawl and the impossible traffic congestion, but  I've come to love Los Angeles for its wonderful museums, concert halls, libraries, and its many exciting and quirky entertainments.

Los Angeles can be intimidating and I always dread driving in it. My friend Shawn, however, is much more adventurous and so I always love it when he visits because he takes me to places I either have never been to or don't know very well.

Anyway, here we were and our first visit was to the famous and amazing Griffith Observatory.

For information on the history and activities at this world famous observatory, check out its website:

More to come!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Adam Cohen and Leonard Cohen momentarily forget their lyrics--it can happen to the best of them.

A fun and moving moment I had to share!


Sunday, November 12, 2017

Research & Fun - Part Four: Morro Bay

On the last day of our fun research trip, Shawn and I headed over to the Central Coast again, this time to a typical tourist spot, Morro Bay. But aside from the purely entertaining--shops, bars, restaurants--we took a harbor cruise that was both fun and informative. I have to admit though, I didn't listen too closely to the information the captain gave us in a fast and very repetitive voice (the poor guy must have told the same story hundreds of times). I just relaxed and enjoyed the landscape and the many sea birds and sea animals.

Let's start with a few pictures. Well, actually, the first thing we visited was the Morro Bay Aquarium, which was going to be closed soon. Thank God, because it was a really sad affair. All these sea animals locked into these small areas. Too depressing, so I didn't take pictures. Shawn, however, has some very colorful photos. Link at the end!

Here is the aquarium from the outside:

Afterwards, we needed to fortify ourselves with a delicious lunch; well mine was, Shawn wasn't too crazy about his.

And here are the pictures from the harbor cruise. Below is Morro Rock one of 13  rocks in San Luis Obsipo county that are remnant necks of extinct volcanoes. More on that here, if you're interested:

This bay is full of sea otters, sea lions, and all kinds of sea birds and sea animals.

 The captain of our boat.

It's not easy to take good pictures on a boat full of people, but I'm proud of having caught a good shot of this royal bird!

All good things coming to an end. After Morro Bay, we separated, Shawn heading north and I south to Los Angeles. It was fun. Great time and great company!

During the coming weekend we explored interesting parts of Los Angeles. Stay tuned.

Make sure to hop over to Shawn's post!