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The Quietest Spot in LA


MT, Oak and bench, Vermont Canyon trail, 10.28.09


I took a walk in Griffith Park yesterday, something I haven't done in a while. I walked all the way from our house--it's about 1.5 miles to the Vermont park entrance. Then I did what has become my usual route over the years, up from Vermont Canyon Tennis Complex to the fork, and west along the rim of the hillside to the redwood grove across from the Greek Theater.

The thing I noticed: the silence. There were not even airplanes in the sky. There were no hikers. It was like taking a walk along the shore of an isolated lake in the wilderness. I could even hear distant but occasionally perturbed rattlesnake rattles and certainly intermittent cawing of hawks.

The best thing that happened after the fire: this bench in the photo, at a base of a lone oak at the fork in the Vermont Canyon Tennis trail. For years I've been stopping at that tree anyway when it is either too hot or too dry or both. Now, there's a bench there. I know, it looks a little like a crypt with a bench on it. But the bench is simple and functional and doesn't have any of those stupid dividers that prevent people from lying down. The bench works in that spot perfectly.