I always explore when I go places and mostly you can find a lot of interesting things when you crouch down and look under bushes and today this included a lot of snails. I love to pick up snails. They feel so nice when they move across my skin. These snails were different though because they did not leave a slimy trail. One shell was empty so I brought it with me. I wanted to take the shells with snails in them too but Mama said it would be too confusing to them and I think that is probably true.
I learned that a man named Simon Rodia moved from Italy to the United States. He lived in Oakland and Martinez in California and he had a wife and three kids. Then he and his wife were not getting along anymore and decided to get divorced. Simon Rodia moved to a place called Watts in Los Angeles, California. He never talked to his kids or wife again! I wonder if his children ever visited Watts Towers. Simon Rodia made a big project and he worked on it all the time!
He used metal to make rings and as he crawled upwards he made the rings more and more narrow until the tops were high and pointed. He used cement and a lot of broken pottery pieces, shells, glass, and tiles. I learned that he used 11,000 slices of broken pottery pieces, 10,000 seashells, 6,000 pieces of colored broken and unbroken glass, and 15,000 pieces of glazed tiles! He added these decorations when the cement was drying.
Simon sold his property to someone who didn’t really care all that much about it. Then some other people tried to buy it and keep it from being torn down and it almost was going to get destroyed at one point but then it did not. The Towers has to pass a test and 10,000 pounds of pressure were pressed on them to see if they would fall down and they did not so they got to stay. Now they are a place to come and visit!
Mama and I are going to work on making small Watts Towers sculptures.
I went to a flower farm to see where they grow many, many flowers. It was very sunny and I know that is why it is a good place to grow them. I noticed all the workers wore hats. I got pretty hot. I learned that this farm used to be very small and then got larger and larger and now it is just huge! Some of the flowers smelled like pepper. If you fly in an airplane over this flower farm then you can see the different sections of flower colors. It is beautiful here.
I went to a place where California Poppies grow all over the place. Usually there is more rain by this time of year so there weren’t quite as many of them as there can be at this time of year. It was still pretty to see. I read all of the signs, looked at the diorama and read a booklet about California Poppies. I learned that the petals are very attractive to bugs. Poppies are the state flower for the state of California. I filled out a Junior Ranger booklet and I did it myself and learned a lot. My daddy got a little bit frustrated with me when I was working on my crossword puzzle because I was taking so long and doing things like starting in the middle, and not being logical in looking for my answers. Eventually I finished up.
When we hiked on the poppy trail I noticed there were very few poppies and that was a little disappointing but I did see three lizards. It was so windy here that Mama thought ChaCha’s stroller was going to fly up like a kite! That didn’t happen but ChaCha sure loved the wind. She laughed so hard! I loved it too and it made me feel so wild and free!
Merle Haggard was a singer from this same place as my Gigi. I got to go inside his house from when he was a child. It was a train boxcar that was turned into a house. That was a good idea and not very expensive of a project for making a house. The last time I toured this museum, his house was not here yet.
You can listen to Merle Haggard’s music but you can’t go see him play in a concert anymore because he is no longer alive. Mama and Daddy saw him play music and then he died a little later on. I did not go to that concert even though I go to lots of them.
I’ve been on long plane rides with her but not any long car rides. Now that has changed!
ChaCha needed a lot of my attention in the backseat with me. She started moaning with a sad sound until I looked at her, then she smiled at me and laughed and looked away. She did this lots of times. I told Mama and Daddy that was what a “nuisance” is and they disagreed.
I was very helpful because when ChaCha gets way too tired, she cries hard and throws up a lot. This only has happened a few times and it did *not* happen on her first day of her first road trip because I helped her feel loved and happy.