I’ve had a crush on California since I went to visit my sister for three weeks the summer before my senior year of high school. It was the first time I’d seen palm trees, and ocean with a side of mountains. It was sunny everyday. There was Disneyland, and Universal Studios and Grauman’s Chinese Theater, Beverly Hills, and vegetarian restaurants (and for a vegetarian this was nirvana in 1976, when nary a veggie restaurant could be found). And there were an abundance of blonde boys. It didn’t hurt that she lived in an apartment on Pacific Coast Highway where the waves of Malibu Beach rushed under the front deck, and we jetted around the city in a hot and speedy Austin Healy convertible.
There have been several life situations in which I almost moved to L.A. (read boyfriends), but it was never right, and I never made the cross country crossover. Every time I visit that enormous state, I fall foolishly, madly and passionately in love again. And I wonder, could I do it, could I leave friends and family to start again 3,000 miles from home.
Given last winter, the answer is probably yes. Will I? I don’t know.
But this last week gave me a deeper adoration for Cali than I’ve ever had before. Driving from L.A. to S.F. on the twisty, hold-on-to-your-stomach, HOLY FUCKING SHIT highway 1, you can’t help but think to yourself that California got some damn good genes. Other states must be jealous. Hey midwest, do you feel like the ugly step sisters? It’s hard to get pictures that capture the essence of this drive, especially if you’re clutching the side of the car like an escaped convict holds onto his tenuous freedom. But the depth and natural gorgeosity defies our 26 letter alphabet. WE NEED MORE LETTERS.
I have so much gratitude for this kind of stunningly no make-up, no editing needed, 100% real deal natural beauty. It brings you back to yourself. It reminds you to appreciate the shocking work of art we live on.