June 1, 2015

Road Trip

My wonderful friend Katy sent us a book titled San Diego in the 1930’s, the WPA Guide to America’s Finest City.  She suggested we take one of the road trips listed inside and compare 2015 to 1930.  After checking the book, George suggested that we drive up to Mount Palomar and see the observatory.  He’d never been. 

That was a great idea.  The only problem was that “The Rock and Roll Marathon” was filling the streets and closing some of our freeways.  I suggested that we might drive north to Mission San Juan Capistrano since we hadn’t been there since the late 1980’s.  We packed a lunch, and he snuck us on a freeway up the coast and out of the fogs.

The town of San Juan Capistrano grew up around the Mission, and we discovered massive new freeways filling the spaces near the old adobe buildings.  In front of the Mission is a new gift shop and outer wall…well designed and with all the profits going to the mission, was a bit of a shock.  Once inside, the beautiful walled gardens and restored buildings and arcades remain uniquely special. 

We sat on a bench and ate lunch near the giant earthquake-destroyed stone church.  Afterwards we walked among the collapsed walls before taking our time in the long arcades and walkways.  Tho much of the surrounding Mission land was sold off after the Missions were secularized, the remaining mission area’s show how the buildings were used during the church’s tenure.  Grape pressings, tallow melting tanks, even traces of iron works remain.  Lincoln returned the Missions to the church just before he was assanated, and restoration of this mission continued from that time until now.

I’ll post pictures on and off over the next few months.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I did taking them.

The Stone Church.



  1. The old missions are artistry for photographers. So unique.

  2. What an incredible place. I would love to see that too. I've never been there. Wow!

  3. Some of the best trips are those near home that we forget have such great beauty and history!

  4. It's a lovely old mission if you can separate yourself from the real history of the place.

  5. Quite the flowers in the first one.

  6. What a nice trip! How far is it from SD? I'll have to look up the history of it.

  7. I'd love to see that place. Thanks for the links. Playing tourist at home is one of my favorite games.

  8. I'm glad they have refrained from "restoring" the mission.


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Peter in front of a wall sculpture. We were invited up to Peter Knego’s home to see the latest installation.   Abstract flat ...