WILD AND WINDY LA: I'm back home in Atlanta after an adventurous Thursday afternoon/evening in Los Angeles. Driving back on I-10 from Redlands, my tiny little rental car was being blown all over the highway and there was dust and debris everywhere. By the time I got back into downtown, the city was experiencing a full blown windstorm and traffic was gridlocked. There was a haze of dust and dirt over LA, power was out to thousands, signs and trees were blown down (check out that picture!), windows smashed out, wildfires destroyed mansions in Beverly Hills. It was a little scary, actually. I missed having lunch with Elizabeth because I couldn't get over to Wilshire, so I wound up at Cecilia's. She hadn't arrived back at her apartment, and when I pulled up, her windows were banging in the breeze and her flowing white curtains looked like ghosts trying to escape. It was truly a bizarre experience.
Cecilia and I met up with the great (and hilarious) poet Brendan Constantine to go over to the University of Southern California campus to hear a reading by poet and activist Alicia Portnoy, who was one of the thousands of "disappeared" in Argentina during the military junta in 1976. She was held prisoner for nearly three years where she was raped and tortured. Her family didn't know if she was alive or dead. It was a very moving reading and a pleasure to meet her afterwards.
I'm exhausted and ready for bed. On the plane home I read, in it's entirety, Cormac McCarthy's The Road. An absolute masterpiece. I was so absorbed in the book, the four hour flight seemed like a finger snap. I highly recommend this book. I'll blog more about it over the weekend.