Santa Monica Canyon Backyard (1975)

Just a little documentation perhaps useful only to give some sense of the place.  The house, a rickety old affair that showed up in a history book (that I later discovered in a local used book store) as the oldest frame house in the Canyon, extended some three stories-worth down the side of a very steep cliff which had become overgrown with all manner of vines and bushes and small wildlife.  (And I recall a mutant orange-lemon tree that had incredibly bitter fruit.)  Sometimes when the haze would abate, you could get a peek of the ocean through the bushes.  One of the photos, taken from the inside through a living room window, shows the rooftop of a neighbor’s house as well as the more or less flat roof of our garage (about four levels down and accessible only from a lower street) where bike repair, furniture refinishing and sunbathing took place.  Plant growth was not just limited to the outside; we packed the interior with spider and other plants to keep the air as pure as possible, although Santa Monica air was among the cleanest of the L.A. area.

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