Saturday, November 26, 2005
Sunrise in San Luis Obispo
Sunrise in San Luis Obispo is one of the most beautiful sights one can ever behold. Yesterday, the morning fog swirled around the Seven Sisters; today the sky is clear and blue. Out the window I can see Cerro San Luis and Bishop's Peak. There is still residual warmth (not as much as LA, but I'll take it) during the day; yesterday we had a light rain that bordered on mist. Quite atmospheric. From the Central Coast to Marin County, the California coast and woods are made for hiking; the meandering, meditative kind.
So far it's been a great little sojourn up to San Luis Obispo. Yet, while my little sister Courtney has a wealth of friends from her school days here, I really don't know anyone in the area. There is someone I met at the Western Round Up in San Francisco years back who lives in one of the other little towns in San Luis Obispo County; for community, though, I depend on the tightly knit local meetings. As they used to say, however, there are no meetings like the ones you first get sober in, so I know better than to fault them for not being LA. Family is the primary focus of any visit to SLO anyway. Someday, I'll get a chance to attend the one gay meeting they have here--a far cry from having three thousand meetings in LA with over three hundred gay meetings. For all its unwieldy urban sprawl, there are at least those pockets of nature and, yes, some real enjoyable urban enclaves, in and around Los Angeles.
Last weekend, I had a chance to do a little plein air sketching and photography around San Pedro, and even managed to catch the shuttle bus to Long Beach over the Vincent Thomas bridge; but the bus doesn't have regular stops on Terminal Island on the weekends, so I'll have to plan a sunrise trip down to do some 'sunrise at the harbor' drawing and photos--bearing in mind that folks are more and more nervous (and sometimes irrationally jittery) about terrorism. Given the high profile of the LA Harbor as a target, it isn't all that unexpected. More than once, I've had plainclothes or uniformed patrols watch me with varying degrees of subtlety. Just as long as I don't disappear with no one knowing where I am into the Terminal Island prison in some secret holding facility for Homeland Security, without anyone believing that I'm not a threat. My luck, I'll be at the right there at the water's edge the day something does happen (and like earthquakes, more and more people are saying 'when' it happens, and not 'if').
Not today. Today there is no hate, no worry, no terrorism, no looking over one's shoulder-- except to seek the wind chimes tinkling from damn near every front porch, or watch the birds sweep overhead or the canopy of leaves as one walks down the quiet streets.
Better get ready for the morning meeting... I really enjoy making the Melody Group whenever I can when I'm up here, and today may be my only opportunity.