How I Saved $9.00

I hadn’t been to downtown Los Angeles, recently, so I decided to take the Metrolink from Santa Ana, on Tuesday morning. Let me start by saying that I love living in Huntington Beach. I like being able to walk to the beach. What I don’t like is the difficulty of getting anywhere else, from home. I realize that ‘difficult’ is a relative term. I have to drive on five miles on city streets to get to a freeway. The distance to the train station is 17 miles. OK, so no one is shedding tears for me. Unfortunately, many were sharing the streets and roads with me. That 17 miles took over 50 minutes — and I arrived at the station, just as the railroad crossing gates were coming down, to allow MY train to make its way to LA. That, boys and girls, is how I saved $9.00. I didn’t have to buy a ticket.

No problem. I know Santa Ana wll — al least I did, 20+ years ago. I met my third wife in Santa Ana. My first cousin teaches high school in Santa Ana. I was a private school director in Santa Ana. I was a corporate vice president in Santa Ana. I was managing partner of an advertising agency, in Santa Ana.

Santa Ana is the county seat of Orange County, California. It has lots of city, state, and federal government offices, many housed in modern, nondescript, and perfectly boring buildings, filled with nondescript, well-fitting business suits. Many are lawyers or government workers. Not what I was interested in. I decided to walk the area along and south of Calle Quatro. Fourth Street is the center of a highly Hispanic shopping district, full of stores selling quinceañera dresses, foto and video services, and reception halls. It also provides many opportunities to send money ‘back home’, hence being a fountain of hard currency for Mexico and Central American countries. To the south of 4th Street is the Santa Ana Arts District, with lots of galleries and cafes — but this was 9AM, and artists don’t get up that early!

Lovers, as it seems, do get up that early.

Lovers Holding Hands

Lovers

May - December?

May – December?

While this section of Santa Ana is the oldest part of the city, it is well kept. Shopkeepers and sanitary workers keep the street clean, starting even before the stores are open for business.

Street Cleaner

Street Cleaner

There are some beautiful old brick buildings in Santa Ana. Nice to look at, but I’ve always wonder who builds with brick in an area prone to earthquakes.

Brick Building

Brick Building

Brick Building

Brick Building

Brick Building

Brick Building

Old Court House

Old Court House

I spent about 90 minutes, talking to a security guard, getting coffee, and walking around. Next are three images of the guard, who had no idea that I had taken his picture. We even joked that photos, of the street, showed how calm he was keeping things.

Security Guard

Security Guard

Security Guard

Security Guard

Security Guard

Security Guard

Heather approached me and ask what camera I was using. Turns out, she also has an EM5

Heather -- Not a Candid Shot

Heather — Not a Candid Shot. In Fact, She Shoots With An EM5.

The rest of these images were just people and things that grabbed my interest during the walk. All images, in this post, were captured with an Olympus OMD-EM5, with a 14mm/f2.5 Lumix lens. Aperture priority, f5.6, AWB, ISO 200 – 250, shutter variable. Post processing was in Lightroom CC.

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