overhaul / undertow

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

this is peace and nature in Hollywood. It is not so bad.

In the mornings I walk around the block. It is an old part of Hollywood and the jasmine and car exhaust battle for supremacy. These two smells dominate my morning walks.

Right now, at this time of year, the jasmine is winning, even down on Hollywood Boulevard where it tumbles in huge pillowy piles down over the crumbling retaining walls that hold small spans of garden back, moatlike, from pushing past the barriers out onto the road and spilling their carefully tended contents of roses and sweet alyssum, like the gardens are just lunging for escape from their adjacent apartments, doddering and old clapboards and crown mouldings under the dormers and eaves, dating back to the twenties and the blossoming of the city. Just feet away, the street is roaring with the sound of rushing Range Rovers, the crunch and plash of tires splattering the opaque black asphalt.

I see the same people with their same dogs each morning. The dogs are sweet; the people, alarming to a greater or lesser extent.


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