Last week saw a run of cool, cloudy weather completely out of character for August in Southern California. Temperatures dipped, winds whipped and my usual beach routine didn't seem nearly as appealing when Saturday rolled around without the sun. Instead, a drive south to walk on a less-familiar stretch of sand (and a chance to be passenger instead of driver) provided plenty of time to appreciate our town's varied architecture.
Two generations ago the building above was the town train station (my grandfather worked there as a railroad telegrapher when he returned from WWII). At the time it was located a mile farther south across the street from this boarding house. Today, its practically unrecognizable as town's most popular coffee shop.
An afternoon train crosses a bridge into the heart of town but won't stop there -- the station today is no more than a concrete platform with a ticket machine for the local commuter train.
Heading farther south, the Self Realization Fellowship occupies a large plot of clifftop property and catches the eye with its giant golden lotus. Come Christmastime, the entire tower will be bathed in magenta light to celebrate the season.