pWdumaNjA-6CEEBhRoD5euxNETs When All This Actual Life Played Out: Hmm

13 August 2013


Somewhere in more-or-less central California
8 August 2013

So, this is a spot I've been trying to talk the spouse into visiting for...oh, 25 or so years. For whatever reason, he didn't want to go, it wasn't convenient, whatever. In trying to talk me into this little jaunt, he used this place as bait.

And I took it.

You have to book a tour to get anywhere near the property, and the tours are not inexpensive. The actual building itself...well, "monument to bad taste" was what I whispered to my family as we exited. And in truth, I was rather appalled at exactly how accurate that sentiment was. As the daughter grumped about conspicuous consumption, I tried to be a bit more generous and commented that it could be called a completely uncurated museum. And that's also accurate. In any event, it certainly wasn't attractive. But hey, if that's how the previous century's 1% chose how to live, it's their buck.

Anyway, I was perfectly happy to get back out of doors. While I can't really say much nice about the interiors, I will say that the gardens are lovely. And I love gardens. As you can see, we were blessed with a beautiful day. It was warm and clear up on the hill top, while the ocean was amazingly blue and gorgeous in the distance. The fog hung in over the horizon for most of the continuation of our drive up to Monterey, rather than doing what it does best, which is spoiling perfectly nice days. So all in all, quite gorgeous.

No regrets in visiting the small part of the interior that I did see, but I can say decisively that that itch has been scratched.

Tech stuff: Taken with my Nikon D40. This site put me in mind of the Winchester Mystery House, though the endless changes and unfinished building stem from a different sort of mania, and also of Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House, in part because of the dim interiors; the heavy, unbeautiful furnishings, and all the bloody carved cherub faces.

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