Tuesday, April 10, 2012
When the Zane Grey estate holds an open house or free urban homestead workshop, I’m there. Under false pretences usually, but with lots of company. Of the fifty or so people assembled at the last goat husbandry class, for example, just how many really planned to one day sit on a milking stool and squeeze that thingy? No, I could tell most everyone belonged to my tribe – The Opportunists. We seize any chance to wander around an interesting bit of Altadena’s historic private property.
Which brings us to Art on Palm, the twice-yearly, one-day-only outdoor Altadena art show.
The first time I went, it was just an excuse to take a legal walk down a private road and look around the old residential canyon called Wildwood Park. But my dubious intentions for visiting Art on Palm turned strangely honest when I actually bought something.
If you’re interested in art and fine craftsmanship -- ceramics, collage, jewelry, painting, woodcarvings -- no doubt you already plan to attend. But if the lure of local artists and a private canyon doesn’t call your name, then, this year for the first time, how about the opportunity to tour one of the Wildwood Park cottages, built more than a century ago.
These days, Wildwood is within walking distance of drug stores, gas stations and whatever else makes up Altadena’s current town center. But it wasn’t always so.
At the turn of the last century, Wildwood and the cottages were a long train or buggy ride from anywhere, located at the crossroads of barely-there and nothing-much. Pasadena had been incorporated for just 14 years, and Henry Huntington wouldn't buy his San Marino for another three.
There's more on Patch, but I prefer this abbreviated version, with some wrap-up, of course. I was asked to excise the bit where I got a private tour of the historic cottage and when I raised my camera, realized I had left the battery at home.
My editor thought that part sounded unprofessional. And so it was. And so I am.
But I don't mind admitting to public embarrassment. In some odd way, I find it soothing.
Wish I could go back and edit the whole piece down. But you know, in the past year and a half, I've written more than 90 columns on Patch. And with that kind of volume, I've learned that at some point you've just got to stop fiddling and let it go.