As a reference for those who've joined the party late, here's an index with links to the other parts of the story. Part One: Chapters 1 & 2: trip to NO, out with Dennis and John, Maple Leaf Bar Part Two: Chapter 3 (part one): French Quarter with Dennis Couvillion Part Three: Chapters 3 & 4: more French Quarter and St. Charles Part Four: Chapters 5 & 6: birthday party in Houma, reunion in Houston Part Five: Chapters 7, 8, & 9: from TX, to Grand Canyon, and on to LA Part Six: Chapters 10, 11, 12, & 13: Venice Beach, Hollywood with Michelle, and departure Unless otherwise noted, full-frame b&w shots were made with an M3 and 50 DR-Summicron or 35 Summicron on Ilford FP4+. All are flatbed scans of prints. Chapter Ten: Night on the Pier While I was driving back from Joshua Tree to LA, Sarah and Greg both caught a nap (sleeping off the beer). By the time we got back to Greg's place in Torrance, they were refreshed enough to go out again, so we headed just down the road to the Redondo Beach Pier. Seemed to be a popular fishing spot, even at one in the morning. the efficient way to fish (50 Summilux, HP5+, EI 1000) Chapter Eleven: Venice Beach The next day, I slept in while Greg and Sarah went to church, then we later met up to head over to Venice Beach to meet one of Sarah's friends (and for me to do some sightseeing/photographing). There was a solid haze when we first arrived, but after having some coffee, it had mostly dissipated, leaving me with that oddly even though bright west coast light. essence of Venice Beach hippie drum family The rollerblading guitar player hit me up for a donation, but I wasn't carrying much, so I gave him a quarter and a good guitar pick. Got a couple shots of him, but nothing very compelling. I couldn't pass up the lighting at the Muscle Beach outdoor gym, though. muscle beach (Pentax 645, 35mm/f3.5, Delta 100) We hit a few of the more generic tourist areas during the course of the day, but the generic tourists looked like generic tourists, so I didn't photograph too many of them. I did get in contact with an old friend of mine from Nashville, Michelle, who had been moved out there a few years before by her company (she was a songwriter with Warner Chapel). She was as happy to hear from me as I was to talk to her, and we arranged to meet in her neck of the woods the next day. Chapter Twelve: Hollywood with Michelle Sarah was kind enough to let me borrow her car for my last full day in the LA area, and I dropped her off at the library before heading to Hollywood for lunch with Michelle. Driving in LA certainly isn't one of my favorite activities, but it's really no worse than Atlanta (just bigger). I was right on time to join Michelle for coffee and lunch at a Urth cafe on Melrose (pretty much the same thing we used to do at my usual neighborhood cafe, Fido, fack in Nashville). Michelle!!!(75 Summilux) Spent most of the lunch just grinning like a fool because it was so nice to be spending time with her again, but she didn't seem to mind. After lunch, we ran by Samy's Cameras (the place is HUGE!) so she could pick up some pics from a guy who works there (and I replinished my nearly depleted film supply). After that, we went over to Hollywood Blvd. to walk around and do some shooting. I would have prefered doing that at night, but she had to be back in the studio by then. So I settled for a few daytime pics of the neighborhood. Hollywood Blvd. I was a bit distracted from straight-up street shooting, though. Such is life . . . fronting some LA attitude don't know how that hole got there Took the long way home through town during rush hour--the scenic route was far more interesting than sitting in traffic on the freeway. Spent a quiet evening having dinner, visiting the cafe, and hanging out with Sarah and Greg before my return. Chapter Thirteen: Leaving Los Angeles The next day, Sarah and I (Greg was at work) had lunch and did a final bit of sightseeing near LAX before I headed east. I was looking forward to sleeping in my own bed again and seeing friends back in Nashville, but I was sorry the adventure was coming to end. beach at the end of LAX runway I didn't get any greif going through security, though it did take some time to have my film hand checked. No one hassled me for photographing in the airport, either; maybe it was just because I only fired off a few frames. waiting to board the flight back to Nashville(HP5+) Hope you've enjoyed the tale. To the best of my knowledge, it's a true and accurate account. I'll be heading out of the country again soon, so it may be a while before I can provide photographic results of my further exploits . . .