So I had made it through my first walk with a stranger. And another one was on it's way. After walking with Liz and getting cool by taking a nap. Lisa, a woman who knew a friend of mine, and signed up for the project through the facebook event I had made. I knew Lisa was an artist. I knew Lisa was my friend's landlord.
The Elysian Valley is a gorgeous part of the river. We started at Fletcher Drive and we made our way up(?) the river. Passing Marsh Park. It was the lovely time of day around 5pm where the light is perfect for photos and walks. Lisa jumped in to holding my hand and we spoke about art and the river. She hopes to project some of her videos on one of the amazing underpasses along this stretch or a few other choice stretches of the river.
We saw so many birds. One black crane like bird doing his mating dance sticks out in my mind. It was glorious to watch him follow us along the river. Doing his opened winged mating dance. A dance of stillness. Which is interesting to me.
Lisa and I spoke about illness. My mother as an autoimmune disease and so does Lisa. We spoke about how the body demands balance when a disease is involved. This part of my childhood is something I don't talk about. A high school friend just learned my mother has RA this past month I never spoke of it as a kid. Lisa talked about her own balance with an autoimmune disease. What I am amazed at is how strong Lisa and my mother are. To have pain be a daily part of your life and live such full lives. And it reminds me that challenges sure do make us stronger, more unique, awesome individuals.
Water did come up in our walk. The NASA study was spoken about. Lisa has an attitude I see with a lot of LA natives. To paraphrase, yes it is scary what is going on but it will get sorted out. We can fly in water. There is water somewhere that we can bring in. I find this frightening. In any other city in the world, I feel, major rations would have happened years ago. In LA, people don't even follow the rules about watering lawns. Now, Lisa, doesn't have a lawn and I am not saying Lisa is not worried. Cause she is. That is why we talked about it. But the ending clause of, oh we'll ship it in our something. Is what makes me nervous. Esp with the pollution of the La River and other waterways. No one is taking responsibility for the river.
I was getting pretty tired by the end of the walk. I tend to not eat enough to handle the emotional aspect of these walks. Lisa and I saw so much beauty. I pointed out corn stalks in the middle of the river. We past small river rapids. The breeze was cool and refreshing and as I tired the air cooled my shoulders.
Lisa and I got back to the car and entered back into the world of cars and left behind the walkers, biker, and fisher folks we saw on the river walk path.