October 2, 2012

31 Trips in Cali, Day 2: The Huntington Botanical Gardens

I had a great, funky hippy of an English instructor way back in my community college days. A few of his sage observations have stuck with me, one of them being that if the average person won the lottery, his or her life wouldn't change that dramatically, beyond the money. Most of us would choose to stay relatively safely within our known boundaries, and few would venture to radically change their lifestyle (quitting your job doesn't count) or general locale.

And I think Mr. Hahn was right: Because if I won the lottery today, I wouldn't venture too far from my roots.  I'd pack up this shack in a heartbeat and move to the beautiful, patrician neighborhood surrounding the Huntington Library & Botanical Gardens.  The Huntington grounds are located less than 20 actual miles from where I was raised, yet the swanky town of San Marino is many stratospheres of moola away from my humble roots. San Marino, like it's larger neighbor, Pasadena, is the epitome of old-money, deeply rooted Southern California. 

A couple of years ago, I drove out with Lily, who was then in the 3rd grade, for an afternoon exploring the gorgeous, sprawling botanical gardens.  We arrived late in the day, so we didn't have time to explore all of the Huntington's 14 gardens. Much time was spent in the Children's Garden, the humid, dripping Jungle Garden, and the serene Japanese Garden.  (We didn't have any time to explore the fantastic Library itself, which is worth a whole other visit.) Both the Children's & Jungle gardens have plenty of fantastic, hands-on learning exhibits for kids. 

And now I'm going to let my photos do the rest of the talking, and dream of a day when I can live closer to this amazing cultural resource.

Lily in the Jungle Gardens
Children's Garden

Me & my gal.
The Tea House in the Rose Garden serves high tea & lunch
Thanks for coming along! Come back tomorrow for Day 3 of my 31 Trips in California, when we'll play tourist in Tinsel Town.

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