We’re in LA visiting Ellen, one of Paul’s high school friends. We’ve visited friends across the country, and it’s interesting to catch them at different times of their places of residence. Some have lived in the same spot for a decade while others have just arrived. Ellen has only lived in LA for two months, and she hasn’t had much time to explore, so we’re exploring the city together, which is great. Even better, she’s driving, so I’m spared the insanity that is navigating a car around this city.
One of the first places we visit is the Griffith Observatory. Perched high above LA in the Hollywood hills, this is an old-school observatory with lots of fun science exhibits, hiking trails, and views. The museum is free and the exhibits are really well done and engaging — the kind that give you that youthful feeling of wonder and excitement in learning new things. And come on, no matter how old you are, it’s always fun to touch a piece of an asteroid or a moon rock. Best yet, they have a periodic table of the elements — with actual elements. Would I have done so badly in chemistry if I could have visualized what sulfur or radon looked like? Well, yes, I probably would have. But I love it as art.