Father's Day was a blur. The day before we celebrated Skye's birthday and now we were juggling brunch, a bike ride along the beach, checking out of our wonderful Venice loft digs, Cindy back to Atlanta and then Skye and I running over to our storage in Sun Valley to load up our camping gear.
And then heading up to Ojai to set up camp, our home for the next several days.
'Round the Campfire
Skye has had an affinity for Shakespeare from the first time she was introduced to it, very informally at the Renaissance Faire, and then after that on DVDs.
She understood the language and the dialect as if were the way we talked around the house.
We were introduced to the Much Ado About Shakespeare program through our home school network. And of all the things we have missed in our year away from LA, Much Ado ranks towards the very top, so when we learned about their summer sessions we were thrilled.
Add to that a camping trip with one of her best friends and Skye was in heaven.
Fortunately for me her friend's mom and I shared enough topics of interest and things in common to have more than a few conversations to help pass the time. In fact, I would have much preferred to have never had to get in the car until we returned to LA at the end of the week.
Unfortunately, I had to trek back into LA a couple of times; once to deal again with storage issues, an ongoing head-ache seemingly with no end and then of course my Ninja Workshop.
Still I managed to make it to a couple of evening cook-outs with some other Shakespeare campers, a kayak adventure and a pizza party with the last game of the NBA Finals playing in the background.
Teens with Tudes
Actually the kids were all wonderful.
It was amazing that they had just a little taste of the freedom that was what summers were for me growing up.
They got to jump on their bikes and roam all over the campground until it got dark.
They got to splash and play at the waterpark without pesky parents bothering them.
Us parents were all remembering simpler times when we were kids and how much more freedom we had.
Work to Be Done
But it wasn't just fun and games. They put a lot into their scene work and for once I wasn't involved in the least and surprise, things still managed to work out.
I joke, Stuart(from Much Ado) and his wonderful staff always do a wonderful job, but to not put myself down too much, in the past I have worked with Skye on her lines a goodly amount.
But not this time, and she aced it.
All The Camp's A Stage
Scenes from a variety of Shakespeare's works were performed by kids of all ages all around the campsites forcing us as the audience to move about.
You might be on tip toes to see what's going on one moment and then needing to turn about and take to one knee so people could see over you.
They used the wonderful set pieces nature had provided, climbing 'round trees and hoping 'bout boulders.
A Race to the Top
I had completely mistimed my morning.
I had clothes washing at the Ojai laundromat while I swung by to pick up pizza for the after party potluck, when I realized there was no way they'd be done before the performance.
This wouldn't have mattered much if we didn't have to be all the way up in Mt. Wilson by 7pm for a friends evening art showing.
And en route we'd need to find a place to stay for the evening.
We reached the foothills only to have to return to Glendale, the closest hotel we could find on the fly. We had our bags up, a shower and change of clothes and were back on the road, all within 30 minutes.
According to the Iphone's calculations we weren't going to make it.
I wasn't going down without a fight.
From the Bard to Beyond
Thanks to facebook, I was alerted to the showing of a good friend of Cindy's, Lita Albuquerque.
We have been just missing her for years now, so when I learned of One Small Section of Sky, at the week-end long festival,KNOWLEDGES at Mount Wilson Observatory, I made a point of making it there, come hell or high-water.
"KNOWLEDGES brings together a constellation of more than thirty contemporary Los Angeles artists whose work extends from the nexus of ideas embodied by the Observatory itself: astronomy, scientific discovery, space exploration, optics, recorded observation, philosophical questions of cosmology, the history, aesthetics and ecology of the site and its influence upon the cultural landscape of Los Angeles. KNOWLEDGES engages the public in a unique opportunity to experience Mount Wilson Observatory through the lens of contemporary art. "
We barely made it in time to get out parking pass and our special by-invitation-only KNOWLEDGES sticker.
And with that enjoy One Small Section of Sky
Picture = 1000 words
Video = 10,000 words
Live Performance = Beyond Words
A Peek Into the Distant Past
Skye and I waited around an hour and a half in the cold to get View the Universe Through Mount Wilson Observatory's Historic 60-inch Telescope. We would likely not have such an opportunity again.
Finally one by one we were led up to peer inside the eye-piece and look at a globular cluster, something that is quite honestly beyond my comprehension.
"Globular clusters are spherical concentrations of stars typically 100 light years across and containing thousands of stars. Globular clusters are very old, at least 10 billion years old and were presumably formed when the galaxy was still forming. They are scattered in a spherical halo surrounding our galaxy and they require hundreds of millions of years to orbit it."
We had missed seeing Saturn by 10 minutes, then they turned the telescope, which was fascinating and amazing thing to see.
Skye was thrilled and the viewing became the highlight of the evening.