Five years and two dogs later, Sara, my host for the LA trip, still looks amazing as ever. We spent a good part of the morning catching up over breakfast, in a tiny little cafe called Pat's Topanga Grill, sharing adventures, lamenting love lost, celebrating new journeys.
Topanga Canyon is home to quaint little stores, restaurants and cafes. We stopped by a store called the Spiral Staircase because it's sign read: "New Age Shop" and also "Unusual Things". That caught my attention. How can you resist walking into a store full of unusual things?? We didn't get anything, but the shop assistant recommended a few religious sites we could visit. Now, I am not one for visiting Hollywood, nor am I enticed by the city of ritz, glitz and glamour. But Hindu temples and Buddhist shrines, hell yeah! Bring it on! So we wove our way around the mountains and valleys. The view was incredible. In the far distance, you could catch a glimpse of Malibu beach, where the sky and the ocean melted into one. Where does the sea end and the sky begin??
Our visit to the Malibu Hindu Temple was impeded by the fact that it was closed between the hours of 12 and 5. We decided to drive to Santa Monica and Venice instead.
Santa Monica pier was pretty much as expected - a tourist trap with plenty of souvenirs for sale and seagulls to dodge. There was a little old lady named Psychic Jude who had her hands full, reading fortunes one after another, saying things like "you may or may not remember..." Venice was a lot more exciting with different characters to see -- buskers, artists, vendors selling their craft. I was out on a mission to find myself a dreamcatcher. I've wanted one for the longest time, and one soon caught my eye. It had a huge Rose Quartz in the middle, and many tiny quartz pieces around the edges. Rose Quartz is a crystal of unconditional love, and carries energy of compassion, love and peace, tenderness and healing, nourishment and comfort. I think that was what called out to me, although I really didn't need to buy one more thing. Strolling up and down the beach, we finally found a nice little bar to enjoy the setting sun, have a nice cold beer while we listened to the tunes of the busker Mr. Biff.