Confession time: I tried to visit Hollywood Boulevard during the day, but I got lost, and never found it. So, I had my friend, Mark Anthony, take me to see the place at night. After watching various magic shows and getting some autographs at the Magic Castle earlier in the evening, Mark, James, and I walked down the hill onto Hollywood Boulevard to see the sights. With all the neon and spectacle, it is kind of like Las Vegas on the Strip, but not as big, and the focus here is on movies instead of on gambling. What follows are some pictures from the evening of April 28, 2014, when I went to Hollywood at night.
We started here.
James St. Andre and I pose for pix at the entrance to the Magic Castle. No photography is allowed inside.
As soon as we got to Hollywood, I ran into an old friend.
The street itself is very colorful, and there were many places to explore. By coming late at night (after 11 p.m.) there were no crowds to deal with.
Hollywood is famous for its stars. Sharon Stone was a sex goddess for my generation. I don’t think James had any idea who she was. I collected her star because it was right next to . . .
. . . everyone’s favorite rodent.
We went exploring. The photos that follow are not in the strict sequence in which they were taken.
It was my birthday. I got to decide where we went. I let my instincts guide me. So, of course, this is the first place we entered.
Going up the escalator led to a meeting with an old hero and role model. What is it with me and the color green?
We came out in a fantastic place–an inner courtyard presided over by albino elephants on the roof.
Mark Anthony, Ken St. Andre, and James St. Andre at the entrance to the Dolby Theater in Hollywood where the Academy Awards take place every year.
James and I also posed on the steps. Mark wanted us to go all the way up, but no way was I gonna do that.
I said hello to another famous monster of filmland. Kong! The 8th Wonder of the World!
We had to go to Grauman’s Chinese Theater. It was renamed Mann’s Chinese Theater in 1973, but is still well-known by it’s earlier name. It has been a Hollywood landmark since it was built in 1926, and is very famous for the hand and footprints in concrete on the sidewalk in front of it. We spent about half an hour there, finding our favorite stars, and just being goofy.
I get along well with statues of monsers. The entrance to Grauman’s is guarded by Chinese lions.
When we found John Travolta’s square, I couldn’t keep myself from rocking out. “Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! Staying alive! Staying alive!” James joined the dance reluctantly.
This slab is dedicated to Star Trek and has autographs of the crew. There was one for Star Wars too, but my sympathy really lies with the earlier show.
Marilyn Monroe may have been the only actress to leave her breast prints in the concrete at Grauman’s. She is the classic blonde actress of which all other blondes are but Shadows and Precursors.
This is a longshot of Grauman’s from across the street.
There was more to see and do on the Boulevard, but you have seen the best of it. Other pix may appear on my Facebook page. You’re all invited to follow my adventures there as well as here. After more than an hour of wandering around and gawking at the neon sights of Hollywood, we called it a night, returned to the Magic Castle, and said goodbye to all the glamor.
Walking back to the Magic Castle in the dark.
I had to stop and pet the African lion as well.
If you’ve ever been to Hollywood, please leave a comment.
I have almost run out of my own photos to post about Kiwiland. Fortunately I have friends with cameras who are much better photographers than I am. These pix were all taken by Kevin Bracey, and with him or Chris taking pix, I will appear in them more often. That’s a mixed blessing at best.
On my first afternoon on the South Island, Kevin introuduced me to a man Named James Trollee. He's a fishing guide among other things, and he knows his way around the waters of the West Coast of the South Island. I'm the old guy in the hat.
James took the three of us (Kevin, Chris, and Ken) aboard his small boat for a photography expedition. We started on a lake and headed down through marshy country searching for white herons.
Typical South Island weather as far as I could tell in 2 days. It threatened to rain. I have a terrible memory and didnt take notes, but this is Lake Ruatapu where a famous battle took place in the 19th century--about ten miles southeast of Hokitika.
Ruatapu River, kind of a swampy park. This is all protected land, and should be full of wildlife, but on such a cloudy day, I think the birds were staying home watcing television.
This is exactly the kind of wild country I imagine to be inhabited by goblins.
This is Chris Bracey, my gracious hostess. We were never in any danger, but safety-conscious James had us all wearing life-jackets anyway. They helped keep us warm.
White hunter, New Zealand style. In New Zealand they mostly hunt birds and fish, although deer have been introduced to the forests and are a meat source for islanders.
Camelback Mountain as seen from Lake Ruatapu. We went hunting for spoonbills at the end of the lake, and saw a black swan, but most of the birds were still hiding.
Some of the trees grow incredibly high. Their wood is both hard and water resistant and they were much prized as masts for the British Navy 150 years ago.
On the following morning, Kevin and I walked a mile on the beach of the Tasman Sea from his house into town.
This is what a happy Ken looks like. I wore the new hat that day.
This is a good place to end today’s episode. Next time I’ll take you to an aminal rescue farm and introduce you to a real kiwi bird.
If you would wear your new hat to go beachcombing, or ever found anything really cool when doing so, leave a comment.