In the Fall of 2013, I moved from Stamford, CT to Los Angeles, CA. As it happened to be, an old friend from childhood was also moving to Los Angeles at the same time. By "same time" I mean that he arrived in LA a week before I did. There are no odds to such things. Eddie Furth, comedian, actor, and I rekindled our friendship and have since navigated the emotional roller coaster of Los Angeles, CA.
Something that became a regular habit for us was hiking around the Griffith Park Observatory. It's an incredible gift to have that park within a few miles of your home. If you've never been to Los Angeles, I'd definitely put it on the list among other top attractions. First, there is a free observatory with a few nice science and space related exhibits, and of course there is the view and hiking.
I don't know much about human physiology and how the body reacts in nature; I do know it's all connected and interrelated. I'm much more of a spiritualist, I understand how my spirit feels in certain places and situations. Coming the west coast, there is something that my spirit learned and discovered about mountains, landscapes, cityscapes, standing high on a hilltop and having a view of the distance. It is perpetually uplifting. It makes you feel free. It lets you take a deep breath. It's automatically joy. By comparison, that's something that's harder to come by on the east coast. There are not many mountain views or Griffith Parks where you can see high above an entire city.
Granted there are many hikes within Los Angeles, California, and the entire world that can give you that feeling of freedom and much more, I'm certainly grateful for Griffith Park and the view. As Eddie and I would hike around the Park every couple of months, I started to notice something really wonderful; that feeling, that joy, that freedom and deep breath whenever I saw the view never went away. Every time, every single time as soon as we would reach the Observatory and see the Los Angeles skyline, this little burst of joy would come from within and again uplift my spirit. It doesn't go away.
On our hikes, I would bring my camera and take a few shots along the way. When we would hike further north, we would always get a great view of both the Observatory on the hilltop as well as the LA skyline in the distance. It's a great view and shot, one that I'm sure many photographers have captured. On one particular hike in May 2015, as we approached another great view, that moment, that shot, I started to wonder if I had exhausted the image. I had certainly captured it on our first couple of hikes and shared and posted it to social media. "Okay, Mal, we get it, you live in Los Angeles, and you love it..."
I thought that this time around I'd skip it. Then as the composition came, I couldn't help myself and instinct took over. I actually turned to Eddie saying, "I'm sorry. I have to get this..." The good friend and supportive artist he is replied, "Don't be sorry, man! Get it!"
It was in that moment that realized my love affair with Los Angeles, my uplifting joy of that view is permanent. What a gift.
We continued our hike and there were a couple of more variations along the way. Another beautiful SoCal day.