Tuesday, May 4, 2010

alley, santa monica

When I used to live in Santa Monica I would walk one mile to work each way, a lovely commute that seems enviable now. I tended to avoid busier streets like Montana, Washington (which has become an overcrowded, illusory "shortcut" to nearby Wilshire), and the "3n+2" streets: 11th, 14th, and 17th, all of which have signal lights and therefore invite faster traffic.

Instead, I would opt for the alleyways permeating this residential area. Smaller, quieter, and generally car-free, they're inviting places to walk with less purpose and more pleasure, to peer at cats hiding under cars, or glass flowers on a windowsill. Alleys are a missed opportunity; in most minds they're places for "dirty" functions like trash collection and parking, but those activities take up only a fraction of their time each day. The rest of the time they are no-cars-lands, effectively becoming some of the most meditative walking paths in the city. Narrowing this alleyway in particular reveals its true nature: an intimate, silent haven. See it narrowed!

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About the Photographer

Los Angeles, CA, United States
Writer, designer, and urban planning geek.

Got a location idea or photo submission? Send it to hello@davidyoon.com. I'll post it to the blog or even run out to shoot it myself.


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