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MITN #8? Scorched Earth

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At first we were di-oriented. Where was the ancient carob tree, rotten to the core, about to fall on somebody, threateningly over the sidewalk, and marked the spot?



As was the old Spanish style house where they had lived 60 years, ever since the end of WWI, locked in a death struggle as to see who could last longer, and end up with the money.

Finally he died at 104, and she a few years later, over 90.

Gone, obliterated, the hi-fi that was home to the 5 inch cockroaches, and the fetid drapes and little carpets where she hid the checks and cupons and cash, gone the hanging cords for the light bulbs and the smelley refrigerator, greasy light, the residue of anger.

Canelo and I passed by one Sunday when the new fence was open, and the lone contractor let us in. Now there was a minimansion.

I wondered if I as mistaken, this could not really be the spot. I checked, but there was a huge stub of an old tree in front.


Now we bounced on the floorboards into a big space with a cathedral ceiling, stretching almost over the entire lot.

Gone the ancient scraggly fruit trees and lawn. Small lap pool. How did they ever get a building permit to expand the footprint? Well, said the contractor, where money talks, they come.

Still, I was glad to see that old stuff gone. It was odious. Good luck for the next go-round.



Now you can see for yourself:


April 2017. They even removed the stump. Total scorched earth.


Written by hildegarden

April 25, 2017 at 5:25 pm

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MITN # 12 Three Bads

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Every neighborhood has one or two. You feel it when you walk the topography of the hills and shades. They’re part of the landscape so it would be wrong not to include them.

THE MAYOR’S HOUSE (or maybe he was just an Alderman)

The Mayor once lived here, some sort of a Robber Baron come-lately to LA.

Oysters, silk stockings, big deals: I guess he wanted a house on the hill.



I carry a stick when we walk by here. Once I saw two very old guys emptying wine bottles in the trash in front. We have a coyote who is said to live in the bushes. Other dog-walkers have warned me.

Lately someone told me this isn’t it’s only home, it also uses an empty old garage nearby. A Country home and a City home all on the same block. And a stream nearby.




Written by hildegarden

March 6, 2017 at 7:06 pm

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MITN #11: Brookheart

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Walked by the Brookheart today with Canelo.

My beat is a little faster as I come near then catch sight of that tilted diamond of blue water, or really, water that reflects the blue sky above.

And once, the white clouds as well.

The sunshine a certain clarity. A semi-secret stream, here at its heart. Admit it, a moment never to be recaptured.

Well, the bamboo in the water is good too, and the heart is there. I always feel more centered with I see it, happier, peaceful.




Written by hildegarden

September 2, 2016 at 9:21 pm

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Does the Pope Wear Prada? & update

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This is an old idea. It just took me a while to get around it.

I know there’s a new Pope now, but still:


Now we have this:


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July 26, 2016 at 8:51 pm

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Sneezy’s House MITN #10

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After the dwarves broke up Sneezy thought it would be cool to retire here. It was near to his gym and dealer and health food store and doctor, so he dolled the place up.

Unfortunately he did not reckon with the asthma that developed from those long years underground in the diamond mine, and he was forced to move out.

I think he is now living somewhere by the mighty Pacific.

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June 17, 2016 at 2:23 pm

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Sleeping Beauty House # 19 (Meaning in the Neighborhood 9)

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The thing was, she never could get a good night’s sleep after.



Of course, once she married Prince Charming there was plenty of money and time and will to do something about it. 

They bought a bunch of houses in every style, size & setting, looking for the magic combination to get a good night’s sleep.


I’m sure they found it in the end. After all, they were young and enchanted.

Written by hildegarden

October 29, 2015 at 6:41 pm

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Gloria Swanson House (Meaning in the Neighborhood 8)

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This is her real house. The one she bought after she made a fortune in her comeback as the creepy fading movie star in “Sunset Boulevard.”

It was the first house on my many walks to beckon.

What dark secrets hid behind the windows behind the trees?



Originally it was more the mood of the place, not the story.

But I never got a good shot, the majik was there sometimes, but only if I was without camera. It was the perpetual lesson to live in the moment. Just enjoy it while you can, walking your dog in the sunshine, flowers, trees, clouds.

But then, lo. When I thought the weather was finally right to get my shot of the brook heart, and had my camera, there was Gloria in fully Gloria.


Over time it weathered as it passed over two generations. Still the neglected moment called up the glamour and dark myth that is Hollywood, granted from the safer perspective of walking the dog.

Now that I look back on it, I see that it was undergoing a subtle change. First the arc was cut off the eucalyptus tree.  Then the cast behind the windows was different and I no longer saw the old 70’s faded turquoise car in the driveway.



Next the trees got cut back again. The light got even brighter.


Today Canelo and I walked by. The house stood out in the light, clean, orderly.

A BMW in the driveway.

It was over.

Gloria was gone.


Written by hildegarden

October 29, 2015 at 6:29 pm

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