Monday, April 27, 2009

Detour to the Huntington (or "A Tour of SoCal" as I like to call it)

A few weeks ago we got an invitation to attend a luncheon at "The Huntington Gardens". Since I'm still new to CA (of course I will still be using that excuse in another 20 years) and I have no sense of direction, I did the usual look-it-up-on-Mapquest thing to have as a backup to my GPS. I'm pretty paranoid about being lost since, as previously stated, I have no sense of direction and because of that I never drive anywhere. Everything I need is within walking/biking distance for me - beach, grocery store, bank, bars, restaurants, etc. - and I'll take a train or bus whenever available. I pretend like I'm "green", but I really just hate to drive. Therefore, when The Husband said "You drive - I'm tired", not only was I shocked (because he loves to drive), but I was less than thrilled.

So off we go. To Huntington Gardens in Huntington Beach...supposedly. Except when we got to the address and...uh...surprise...? We had arrived at Huntington Gardens APARTMENTS. Gee thanks, Mapquest. And my usually trusty GPS (whose name is actually "Mr. Cars-Guard" - get it?) was no help at all. So after driving around for a while, we decided to go old-school and call 411. They connected us right away to "Huntington Gardens" and we got new "Huntington Gardens RETIREMENT HOME". Are you kidding me?!?!!! So then we do the Blackberry search thing and realize that "The Huntington Gardens" is really called "The Huntington: Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens". In Pasadena. Easily an hour north of Huntington Beach. On the 405. Duh-ork alert.

Needless to say, we missed the luncheon. However, we had a great time once we finally arrived. The Blue Boy (no, not the band or the magazine - the Gainsborough painting) resides there, plus they were having a Lincoln exhibit, which was pretty cool.

(Click to enlarge pictures.) Here's one of the many library sitting rooms. Wouldn't you love to curl up with a good book in front of this fireplace?

Or gaze out these beautiful stained glass windows?

Check out Blue Boy and his gal pal, Pinkie.

Storyboards for Cinderella: Of The Fortune of the Maid Who Was Called Cindermaid and Was Afterwards a Queen (You really need to click to enlarge this one.)

The Gutenberg Bible - one of the three vellum copies in the United States. And no, it's not Steve Gutenburg's bible.

I also have millions of pictures of flowers - don't worry, I won't bore you with them. The gardens were so beautiful that I'm hoping they cured my black thumb by osmosis. If not, I'll just post the pictures all around my balcony and have a pretend garden. Despite the brain-dead beginning to the day, we had a fabulous time. If you ever get a chance to go to the Huntington, definitely go. Just don't call me for directions.


JillyG said...

I could've told you that Huntington Gardens is in Pasadena! Why didn't you visit me since you were in my neck of the woods????

CBW said...

I think you were out of town - it was back in March.