As I continue with my 2011 goal (doing all 38 walks from THIS book), my travels lead me to southeast Santa Monica. This walk begins on 26th Ave and Olympic in Santa Monica surrounded by many corporate headquarters. Since I did this walk on the Sunday of a holiday weekend it was completely vacant. Even the Starbucks was empty, so I recommend doing this walk midweek if you can, to get the full effect of this neighborhood. I did the walk a little out of order and began with the Water Garden Complex. This is a series of buildings surrounding a waterway that has several bridges, walkways and fountains built into the landscape. I can just imagine the high-stress corporate jobs that people have in these buildings and how on their lunch break they can escape by eating their lunch looking over the tranquil waters. IT’s really quite lovely and made for some fun photos. The companies in this complex and neighborhood are Yahoo! and Universal.. many smaller companies owned by large corporations. Having them all so close together is really something and makes the whole walk feel very branded. Normally this central courtyard would be a great place to get lunch, unfortunately with the holiday everything in the neighborhood was closed. The only signs of life were the many bicyclists on their Sunday ride along Colorado Ave. I continued along the walk, passing the Playboy Studio and many other production company/ studio spaces. At the corner of Broadway and 20th, I decided to stay on my side of the street and continue south on 20th. Moments after making this decision and turning my back I heard a loud crash and saw a rough car accident take place. I didn’t stick around because I knew there was nothing I could do and clearly people with medical experience were running to their aid. It was upsetting, but even more upsetting that in the 33 walks Ive completed I’ve seen and been very close to two major accidents. I don’t mean to get preachy, but pay attention and be safe while you’re driving. As far as I could tell everyone lived in both accidents, but both were caused by driver error. Although I was shaken, I continued on with my walk.
As I did these walks out of order, this means I ended with Bergamot Station, which I actually first walked by without noticing it. Because it was a holiday, all but 1 of the galleries/artist spaces in this complex were closed. This complex is behind a tall barbed-wire fence and seems like it’s design is almost in protest to the monstrous Water Garden Complex. It’s modern hip sprawling buildings indicate fun art i happening here. They strung little lights above the courtyard spaces, which would make for a fun art gallery opening. I will keep you posted on up coming events in this space, because Im dying to go back and see the crowd that would attend these artistic events.