Long Beach, sunset, March 3, 2014, photo by Forest F Casey
On March 10, 2014 it was 50 degrees and crazy sunny in the Detroit area; in Michigan in the winter, you learn the value of sun — warmth and light that can melt the 80+ inches of snow we’ve had so far; the next day it was 40 and cloudy, and on Wednesday March 12, it was pouring snow, heavy, wet, blowing, relentless. After all it is still officially winter until March 21. The Advent of spring is more of a Lenten passage, a time of sacrifice and reflection, of sharing in a community of suffering for the sake of discipline and insight. So, in this spirit, why was I in LA on Long Beach? One of my sons was on his way to an extended trip to the UK, France, Scandinavia, and other destinations in Europe. I assisted him in travel preparations, including packing, contacting bank + cell phone provider, hosteling, mapping, surface transit, etc. My older son took us on a tour of a famous auto museum where he works as a docent. During the week, I took public transportation (the little known LA Metro light rail system, as well as buses). Contrary to what people (i.e. Angelinos) say, getting around LA NOT by car is completely possible, affordable, and sort of easy depending on your route. For example, my son’s house to Chinatown is just two stops on the Gold Line; however, from LAX to his house is four trains: Green to Blue to Red to Gold, including a tricky transfer at Union Station. Long Beach to Museum Row on Wilshire is two trains (Blue to Purple), then bus to Fairfax.