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Saturday, July 2, 2016

Summer in Winter: Manhattan Beach in January (Part II)

Last January I was in Manhattan Beach, having breakfast with a fraternity brother from UCLA. As we move into summer, I thought this would be as good a time as any to post these photos. Above, Manhattan Beach Blvd as it ends at the Manhattan Beach Pier. Here's a link to Part I from last week. 

Despite the headaches of traffic, crazy home prices, and everything else that comes with living in Los Angeles, these photos are a reminder of why the area continues to lure people from around the world. Above, people enjoying breakfast outside - in January.  

In was Saturday morning, and lots of folks were out and about. 

Most homes and small apartment buildings were 2-3 stories tall. Homes are packed in. Translation: your front yard is Pacific Ocean down the street. Pretty awesome. 

Walking around a bit after breakfast in the area near the Pier, this apartment building felt so typical of old-school Los Angeles. The very simple architecture, the stucco exterior. There are thousands upon thousands of buildings like this in greater Los Angeles. 

LOVE, love this shot. Apparently, I'm not the only one. These are multi-million dollar homes, out of my (and most everyone else's league). Fortunately, the beaches are public and are open to everyone. California has strict ordinances regarding public access. Every beach up to the mean high tide are - at least in theory - open to the public. No problem in places like Manhattan Beach. A bit more complicated in places like Malibu. 

Another "old school" Manhattan Beach apartment building, with a newer building next to it .

More new development. All this is very typical of Manhattan Beach, at least the blocks near the beach. 

Folks having breakfast outside - in January. In theory, you can go skiing and surfing in Southern California in the same day. No, I've never done it, at least on the same day. I've tried skiing and surfing - I'm not great at either. The closest my wife and my kids and I got was stopping at the beach in Santa Monica before driving up to the snow. That was fun. 

Another shot of the business district of Manhattan Beach. 

Unlike Newport Beach or Huntington Beach (in Orange County) or Venice Beach (in Los Angeles County), Manhattan Beach has a gently slopping hill from the beach that continues for a mile or so into the community. This allows many more homes to have a bit of an ocean view, and makes the ocean visible, even from a mile or so away. 

This being Los Angeles, at the edge of the communities small downtown is the obligatory parking structure. Boy, is this old school. But, hey, it still works. While it may not be the world's most beautiful parking garage, it's a welcome sight on a busy summer day - and you're looking for a place to stick that vehicle.

I like the expression "work hard, play hard" .... but unfortunately it leaves out that critical - and often missing - third component: rest. 

How about: work well, play well, rest well. Maybe not as catchy, I know. 

Hope your summer involves all three - work, play, and rest. At the beach - or not. 

© 2016


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