I’m still on the idea of hiking from home to the Conejo Valley. There’s a chance I’ll need to Uber it from the end of the trail to the hotel, and most assuredly to the bar.
Right now, it looks like a 3.2 mile walk from home to the trailhead and then between 11-13 miles to the destination. The weather today (windless and 70 degrees) would have been perfect. Though I am hoping we’ll get more rain, the forecast for the next 10 days is for clear, clear and still more clear.
I’m not hiding from the fact that the whole idea is predicated on the need for a minor vacation and an even more minor adventure. But more than anything, I want to stay focused on goal after attainable and foreseeable goal. And this winter seemed like a good opportunity to explore and learn more about the many trails of the valley of my birth and to do something fun and unusual.
The trails west of Valley Circle have one significant quality in common. They look, at least I think they look, very much like the area must have looked 150-200 years ago.
That’s a long time, for a place on the westernmost edge of the City of Los Angeles.
At this point, I am anticipating that 3 mile road-walk I mentioned earlier to the Bell Canyon trailhead. Then, I imagine a southward traverse to El Escorpion, then another southwestern transition to the Victory Trailhead. At this point, I am still not sure where I’ll pop out in Thousand Oaks or Westlake but I know there will be a good Old Fashioned within walking distance. Here are a couple pics I grabbed today. More about them and the trail conditions tomorrrow.
By the way, tonight’s writing soundtrack is Industry, the 1997 record by Richard Thompson and Danny Thompson. Tonight, as always, I especially enjoyed Sweetheart on the Barricade.
I took a photo of food (a cocktail to be sure) and posted it to Flickr yet again. I try like hell to avoid doing stupid shit like this but I couldn’t resist. The Westlake Four Seasons serves up an excellent Old Fashioned during their Thursday Happy Hour. The angle of the dark tile under the glass looked good as did the filtered light coming across the hotel’s garden. Man, it was a good drink…so good that I had two.
When I got home I was impressed by the color, the lighting of the image and just how much the camera on the iPhone 8 can do when there’s plenty of light.
I also confess that I had a pretty strong feeling this photo would have a decent shot at getting onto the hallowed servers of Flickr’s Explore. It had a lot of the qualities I think Flickr’s algorithm looks for.
First, the title is unambiguously associated with the image. In other words, I’ll hazard that the algorithm has a dictionary that includes a list of cocktails (that obviously includes the Old Fashioned) and that the algorithm could readily correlate the discernibility of the image to the title of the image.
Second, the image was sharp, saturated and unambiguous.
Third, I used tags that localized and described it completely (down to the name and location of the hotel, the exact camera used and the fact that the Snapseed image processor was employed).
So, what does all this mean? Not much. As I have said before, any notion of knowing what a proprietary and very likely evolving algorithm values will never ascend beyond pure speculation. Still, the criteria I listed about are common to every photo of mine that’s gotten into Explore. In the end, we can deduce some elements of what appear to be valued criteria but there’s no way to know all of them or even to know whether any elements of a kind of computer-generated randomness are part of the process. What I do know and say with more than a touch of irony is this; none of my photos that I consider good have ever made it into Explore.