Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Best Independence Day Weekend Ever

Matt from "dripping with optimism" came down from Sacramento to spend his holiday weekend with me. I initially enticed him with the promise of a Death Cab for Cutie concert at the Hollywood Bowl.

When ever someone from out of town visits, I'm always delighted because they motivate me to get out and go places I've never been or are "touristy". We had a super packed weekend, and Matt did a stellar job of outlining a basic plan, but allowing everything to flow and feel natural.

Friday, we went to the LA Zoo and braved the heat and sun to see all the cool animals. I think my personal favorite might have been the Ocelot. As we waited in the 45 minute queue to get tickets into the zoo (crazy, right?) Matt and I got to talking and I found out that he was aware of the movie "The Wizard of Speed and Time" by Mike Jittlov. Which is amazing because NO ONE knows about this movie. You can only buy second hand VHS copies of it on ebay or Amazon... it's just not out there.

Which inspired us to head to Mike's house in Silverlake. We just drove by, but it was fun. We walked down Hollywood Blvd and checked out Michael Jackson's star. Then we went up to the Hollywood and Highland complex, and took this classic photo:
We are SO sexy... lol. I kept wanting to fix Matt's glasses--they are a bit warped, and so they don't sit quite level on his face. That night, we went to the LACMA and caught a bit of free Jazz. Then we checked out the Mullholland Overlook:
Below, the city stretched out like a glittery dream. Still light out, but at that magic hour when the earth and the sky are the same intensity.

The next day, we went to Huntington Beach. I'd gone last summer with my roommate, and the fireworks show they have was phenomenal. So when we got to the beach, we jumped right into the water--and it was COLD. It was surprisingly cold--even a stalwart Mainer such as I could only last about 20 minutes before my hands started to loose feeling!

We walked around to warm up... but as the sun went down, Matt was shivering uncontrollably. (I was chilly, but okay--but I've got insulation). He wasn't sure he'd be able to hold out for the fireworks.

We sought out a wind break in the nook of a building. I pulled Matt in front of me and had him lay against my chest. I wrapped my hands around him and held his hands (which were freezing) and put my cheek on his ear to keep it warm. It was very cozy.

And I just enveloped him and held him for about an hour and half. We watched the fireworks together like that and I've not felt so contented and peaceful in ages.

People walked by and stared, and I didn't care at all. I stared back--one woman smiled as said it looked cozy--boy was it ever.

As I sat there, I I told Matt that he was going to make some guy really lucky someday. He said "igual"

Ditto, essentially.

I'm kinda honored that he trusted me and felt comfortable enough to share that moment with me. I'm so lucky to have a friend like that. Thanks Matt, for making my Independence Day into a really treasured memory.

We drove home, happy and singing classic 90's hits in the car. It took two hours to fight traffic home--but it was a blast. When we got home, we made Root Beer Floats and watched Clue.

The next day, it was on the the Los Angeles Natural History Museum. I'd say this is my favorite photograph that I've taken in a long time, from the African wing:
After that, we hit up Chipotle for a late lunch/early dinner and then went to the Death Cab Concert--the reason for the trip, the finale to an amazing weekend:

The concert ended with a fireworks bonanza for "Transatlanticism" as a finale.

Believe me, you had to have been there. It was an INCREDIBLE finale to a great concert.

The next morning, as I drove Matt to the station, I admit I teared up a little--I'm a sucker for a goodbye. :( Anyway, thanks for the fun times, Matt. Hope to see you again soon.


  1. It looks like you're weekend paralleled mine in that I met up with a friend I knew over the internet and we spend the weekend touring the city, museums, fireworks show, and all that. And I too was grateful that he trusted me enough to share those moments with an almost stranger.

    Coolness abounds.

  2. Ah yes . . . the glasses. *sigh*

    The movie doesn't do anything like justice to that finale. The song was amazing, and that's the L.A. Philharmonic in the background. They were getting their grove on, big time. Memories.

  3. Sounds like a lot of fun. I love Death Cab... Their Salt Lake concert sold out in a matter of hours, and I didn't get tickets. :/

    I'm glad that you're enjoying life and finding so much to be happy about. Keep smiling! :)

  4. I am glad you had a great Independence Day and after the rough month June, I am sure it was nice to just have fun and enjoy life.

  5. @Scott--yes, Death Cab is awesome--I've been listening to them non-stop ever since!

    @Grant--Thanks, it was a welcome respite.

    @Matt--you look adorable in your glasses! Don't worry about it!