A short story about planting a tree.

Looking up through the leaves of the live oak trees at blue sky and clouds.

Have you ever planted a tree and realized it will probably outlive you?

That thought occurred to me a couple days ago as I helped to plant a few young oak trees in Balboa Park.

Yesterday, as I sat gazing out at San Diego Bay, I recalled how the larger oak trees in the grove had seemed so very . . . old. How they were bent and cast dark, spidery shadows. And a bittersweet story came to me.

It’s titled Dale’s Tree. There aren’t many words. I published it here.

On a hedonistic treadmill in La Jolla!

Funny that the latest addition to the Murals of La Jolla slyly mocks an element of this very affluent San Diego community. The mural is titled Hedonic Treadmill. You can see the hedonism at 1162 Prospect Street. The pile of materialistic excess was heaped up by artists Einar and Jamex de La Torre.

The first thing I thought when I saw this mural was the La Jolla Concours d’Elegance. What in a short human life could possibly be more pleasing than showing off an impressive car?

However shallow hedonism might be, some people seek selfish pleasure and nothing more.

There’s an artist talk coming up with Einar and Jamex de La Torre on January 10, 2023. Click the above link to learn more about the mural and the upcoming talk.

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I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Duality in Chicano Park’s fountain sculpture.

Perhaps you’ve seen the fountain sculpture in Chicano Park. It stands on a colorful tiled base in a splashing basin under the Coronado Bay Bridge, not far from the skatepark. The symbolic public artwork was created by artist Raul Jaquez.

A bit of description can be found here.

It’s hard not to see the duality in this work of abstract art. On one hand, female; on the other, male. On one side, spiritual calaveras (skeletons) holding a sun with the ollin symbol (representing change); on the other, flesh and blood living people holding a baby.

The unifying symbol appears to be a heart-eagle, ready to be released. The eagle is destined to take flight and rise above all, both the living and dead. At least, that’s my interpretation.

There are a few other sculptures in Chicano Park, but this striking work in the fountain, to me, is the most elaborate and artistically interesting. It is quite beautiful.

Back in 2015 the aging sculpture was restored during a major Chicano Park improvement project.

Thank you for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often, so you might want to bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and check back from time to time.

You can explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on this website’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There’s a lot of stuff to share and enjoy!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

A story about desire that can’t be fulfilled.

The sky turns red and yellow just before sunrise on Mount Laguna. Photo taken at the Storm Canyon Overlook on the Sunrise Highway.

We all have deep-seated desires that can never be fulfilled. It’s an essential part of being human.

There are horizons that cannot be reached, dreams that cannot be realized. But we keep moving forward through life, in that place where we find ourselves, and we never stop hoping.

I’ve published a short story concerning this. It’s titled A Distant Place.

Writing the story was painful. Those who are thoughtful might enjoy reading it.

You can read this short work of fiction by clicking here.

Tears water a blossom in San Diego.

Where the San Diego communities of Normal Heights and City Heights meet, the tears of Chucho water a small human blossom.

Perhaps you’ve seen the piñata character Chucho on El Cajon Boulevard just east of Felton Street, on the wall of U-Stor-It, facing a car sales lot.

Chucho is the creation of San Diego born Latina artist/muralist Michelle Ruby, aka Mr. B Baby. There’s a good chance you’ve observed the colorful character in other street murals around the city. You can find more photos of Chucho by clicking here.

The artist, describing her largest mural yet, says the imagery can be interpreted as your pain is what truly makes you blossom. There’s a description of her thinking and philosophy of life on her Instagram page here.

The beautiful mural was painted several months ago.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

A dragon, a giant, Martian canals and a mummy.

I love this dragon street art. I had to add contrast to many of these photos, because much of the artwork has been faded by time and weather.

Do you daydream?

I suppose we all do.

What do you dream about?

I dreamed up a short story.

It’s titled The Weed.

It’s a fairy tale, and it isn’t.

It’s about life, growth, and forgetting.

The abrupt climax is sad, and perhaps not unexpected.

If you have an active imagination and a philosophical view of life, you might enjoy reading it here.

Have a great Sunday!

Richard

Unarius Academy of Science students reenact past lives!

A fascinating display in one window of the Unarius Academy of Science in El Cajon shows students engaging in psychodrama, reenacting past-life experiences.

I walked past the Unarius Academy of Science today. It’s located in downtown El Cajon. You might have seen their flying saucer car or the space murals by their parking lot.

According to an educational sign in the window, beginning in the late 1970’s, students were filmed during their elaborate psychodramas to help them recognize and overcome past-life shocks and traumas.

A different display filled this particular window the last time I peered through it, a little over a year ago.

I can’t say I know anyone who has studied here, but no doubt the coursework is just a bit unusual!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Memory Traces: art inspired by La Jolla history.

There’s a fascinating exhibition now showing at the La Jolla Historical Society’s Wisteria Cottage Gallery. San Diego artists, after viewing artifacts in the La Jolla Historical Society’s archives, have created pieces that are inspired and informed by the past. The exhibition is titled Memory Traces: Artists Transform the Archive.

I visited the gallery inside the historic Wisteria Cottage yesterday. It’s free to the public and worth the time if you’re curious about local history or the creative process–or philosophy.

According to the La Jolla Historical Society’s description here: The exhibition draws its title from a 1925 essay by Sigmund Freud, in which he explored the way remembrance functions . . . The exhibition proposes that the archives’ contemporary value may, in fact, lie in its malleability . . . for critique, for expanding understandings of experience and of history, for transformation, and the creation of new narratives…

As I walked about looking at the pieces, I could see how this world we live in is a continuum, where past, present and future are entangled and inseparable, not unlike all the moments in our own lives.

I took photos of two examples of the artwork…

Historical photo of Spanish artist Eduardo Chillida’s sculpture Our Father’s House, installed in La Jolla Village in 1989 as part of an outdoor art exhibition. A study for a larger work later installed in Guernica, Spain, honoring lives lost during the Spanish Civil War.
their father’s house, by artist Joe Yorty, 2022. A wood replica with photos and newspaper clippings concerning the building, movement and destruction of local buildings. An homage to past lives, including the artist’s own father.
Cloth banner with words Matinee Today that was once used at La Jolla’s historic Granada Theatre.
Matinee Today, by artist Allison Wiese, 2021. Photos of material from the past being used in present life in many different ways. The past persists. Nothing ever truly goes away.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Beauty at the Meditation Gardens in Encinitas.

Some of the most beautiful gardens in San Diego County can be found in Encinitas. I visited one of those gardens this weekend.

The Meditation Gardens at Self-Realization Fellowship is a quiet retreat for those who like to walk or sit quietly in a place where the mind can find peace and the spirit, inspiration.

Pathways wind through a lush, carefully tended world. Benches in green nooks invite rest and reflection. There are exotic plants, trees and flowers, ponds filled with bright koi, and breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean. Like distant poetry, surfers far below ride the curling rhythmic waves of Swami’s.

The Meditation Gardens recently reopened after a long closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Visitors to the garden, as the Self-Realization Fellowship website suggests, might discover “a greater realization of the Divine Presence that lies within.”

The amazing garden is free to the public.

Enjoy a sample of its beauty…

This is the site of the Golden Lotus Temple, built in 1937. Here thousands came to services conducted by Paramahansa Yogananda… In 1942 cliff erosion made the temple unstable and later it had to be dismantled…

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Wishing everyone a sweet New Year!

Yes, the older I get, the faster time flies. I still haven’t figured that out.

I remember thinking as a boy: Wow, I’m probably going to be around in the distant future . . . in the 21st century! There’s going to be a year 2000! The very notion I’d be living in a whole new millennium seemed inconceivable.

Now it’s 2022!

In the blink of an eye!

And here comes the metaverse!

Having made it this far, I guess we all deserve a virtual doughnut. (A yummy Donut Bar one, too!)

Wishing everyone a sweet New Year!