Sunday, June 14, 2015

Walking in L.A.

I had a great time at the Saturday events at DML ... and then in the late afternoon, I was ready for a bit of adventure! I had really hoped to go to the LACMA, but there wasn't really time for the bus trip out there and back, so I decided to take Alan Levine up on his suggestion about the Last Bookstore over on Spring Street, about a mile from the hotel. What a great suggestion!!! The sun had finally come out, and it was a fun walk past Pershing Square to get there... and the bookstore was as wonderful as expected. I bought four books, including one that is really exciting, a beautiful book of Indian myths retold by Kamla Kapur: Ganesha Goes for Lunch. And I see it is available for Kindle, so I will have to make sure that I add this to my Kindle list for the Indian Epics Library Kindles!

Inspired by this lovely book, I decided to go find the Indian restaurant that had been listed as near the hotel: Gill's Indian Restaurant down on Grand Street, which was about a mile from the Bookstore, putting me almost back at the hotel (Gill's is just three blocks from the Sheraton). And what an intriguing place! It's actually inside the Stillwell Hotel... and hanging in the lobby of this odd, old, eccentric hotel are some beautiful tapestries from India! The woman at the desk told me that the owners of the hotel are from India, and the tapestries are from their personal collection. They were BEAUTIFUL. So that scratched my art itch! It was hard to take pictures of them with the lighting as it was, but I did my best. You can see more pictures at the Flickr album (or see slideshow at bottom of this post); here is one that gives you a sense of what they are like. Isn't that lovely?

The food was really good too: I had a vegetarian thali and chose the began bhartha (eggplant) as my vegetable, and then there was naan (very good naan!), basmati rice, raita, aloo matter (potato curry), dal (the dal was really excellent!), and kheer for dessert. And I ordered onion bhaji too... I couldn't help myself! So delicious!

There was still a little bit of daylight, so before heading back to the hotel I walked another block down to Grand Hope park, which is a tiny park bounded by Grand Street and Hope Street between 9th Street and West Olympic. What a pretty little park! There were lots of children playing there, and the sculptures were... FOXES! I kid you not! Again, there are more pictures at the Flickr album; here's a picture that shows the three foxes: 

And a close-up of just one:

And at the 9th Street entrance to the park there is a funky little clock tower with lovely tile work. Here's the tower:

And here's a close-up of the tile:

Very nice! So, between the Bookstore and Gill's and Grand Hope (such a good name for a park), I had a great little LA adventure, as good as any museum adventure. I'm so glad Alan told me about the Bookstore, and then one thing just led to another! A perfect way to end a fabulous conference. I'll post more about the conference on Monday after I get home and my brain actually starts working again! :-)

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