Sat, 02 May 2009

Southern California April 2009

Airship Hangar @ Tustin

I spent a few days in southern California (mostly in Orange County) a couple of weeks ago, and of course I took my camera. I was working at a site on the border of Irvine and Tustin, CA.

IMG_2253On my drive to the worksite every day, these two massive structures looming out of the morning fog kept grabbing my attention. I had no idea what they were, but they seemed wildly out of place among the office parks, shopping malls, and subdivisions. The day before I left, I finally remembered to ask my hosts about them, and found out that they were World War II-vintage airship hangars.

We finished up a little early that day so I went walking around with my camera. It’s actually a very serene place now, inhabited primarily by birds. There was a friendly nesting pair of red-tailed hawks who'd made one of the hangars their own private aerie.IMG_2221 I'm anthromorphosizing and calling them friendly because they put on quite a show. I heard them long before I saw them — the distinctive “skee-eer” noise that a red-tailed hawk makes (which you've doubtlessly heard in hundreds of movies) is an attention getter (especially, I would imagine, if you're a small mammal.) Anyway, for nearly a half hour I watched them dart, dive, fly along the top edge of the hangar, and even occasionally fly directly over me (at first to ascertain whether I was a threat, later just out of curiosity, I think.)

IMG_2300The following day I drove down to San Diego to visit another customer site. After I finished up for the day I decided to take the scenic route north to Orange County. It’s a very nice drive, if you have the time. I stopped at Cardiff State Beach after refueling the rental. It was a little chilly and overcast, but that didn’t stop the surfers, who played among the fairly dramatic swells off the coast. I can't say I did very much frolicking (alas, I was wearing khakis and leather shoes) but I did take a few pictures.

One of my regrets is that I visit many interesting areas as part of my job, but I rarely have time to see anything beyond the inside of office parks and hotels. To the extent that I can, whenever I'm lucky enough to finish up early I like to get out and see things.

If you've installed Cooliris you can "quick-surf" all the photos embedded on this page, btw.

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:: 05:31
:: /entertainment/travel | [+]
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