Posted by: cassymuronaka | March 10, 2010

Riverside Photo Adventure #1

My husband asked me what I wanted to do on my birthday, and the answer was “roam.” Roam with a camera.

Right now, Los Angeles and its various surrounding counties look like an altered universe, having gone from a land that is basically desert to something that is lush and surreal. Flowers are popping up that people didn’t know existed in their backyards, the result of an extraordinary amount of rain at the possible end of a seemingly limitless drought. Vegetable gardens are turning out monster mutant broccoli.

You can smell the change in the air, which is at times tropical, other times like a Blue Norther is about blow into town. Transformed hills now are coated in green velvet. Even the mountain rocks look pretty.

It all makes you want to hop in a car and wander. And the place where you want to wander is somewhere that is worth visiting now, but which might become phenomenally inhospitable in about three months. Death Valley, for example, which is several hours away.

We got too late a start for that, so I chose Riverside, only 45 minutes away, and one of California’s worst smog pits in summer. It’s a city and county that in the none too distant future will boast staggering temperatures of 106 in the shade, and offer a visual palette of brown for months on end.

But it’s also an area rich in history, with vast cultural opportunities, monuments of architecture, major universities, and way too much good Mexican food. Now is the time to enjoy it, while the skies are clear, electric blue, and full of puffy white clouds.

And Riverside has quirk. It has lots of quirk.



  1. Happy birthday! šŸ™‚

    • Thanks Cindy!

  2. So glad you’re enjoying yourself today.

  3. What are the details? It looks like it was a lovely day. Did you know about the paper cup or did you just happen upon it?

    Belated Happy Birthday by the way

    • I looked it up online after I decided to go to Riverside. I was looking for weird or fun things to do. It decorates the front of a now-defunct paper cup company.

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