For those of you who know me, you know that I grew up in Los Angeles and moved to Carmel about 25 years ago. Last week, I moved back to a city that has dramatically changed in those 25 years.
Culturally, which is the lens I always use, this city is now a CITY to rival NYC, CH, & SF. Little neighborhoods, like Korea Town and Culver City, are no longer fringe...they are the new "IT neighborhoods. Traffic, which was nearing "grid lock" when I left is now a pulse of humanity that you MUST learn to flow with.
This amazing timelapse, by a filmmaker named Colin Rich, does justice to the heartbeat of Los Angeles. If you imagine this CITY is a living being (which is how I think of our whole planet), you will see the heartbeat of Los Angeles is made up of cars, planes, spaces and people.
Despite the fact that I've been visiting Los Angeles for the last 25 years to see family, work, and just visit, I'm having culture shock! I've moved from an environment covered with trees and dotted with roads to a place on the earth where the vertical landscape is made up of those entities we call buildings and the network of roads and highways rivals the complexity of the Internet. The feeling of this CITY has edges that I'm not used to. And, now that I'm here for good (instead of visiting), I seem to be feeling them all.
I make my living using the Internet. I'm on the "net" all day...on my phone, on my tablet, on my laptop sitting at this Starbucks. So, the idea of a global network resonates with me. I believe we are all connected...sentient and non sentient beings alike. So, to find myself in Los Angeles (where my network is now more the later than the former) is a "WOW" moment.
I have always been connected to trees. I grew up in Silverlake, when it wasn't the chic place it is now here in Los Angeles. Our yard was covered with trees. My Dad used to teach us the names of the trees. I climbed in them. I picked up their leaves on Haul-It days. I ate from loquat trees, picked figs, and even found a plumb on a flowering plum tree that wasn't supposed to have fruit. (Bet my Dad $5 that it did come from that tree and waited a whole year to prove to him it did and win my $5.)
So, to come back to Los Angeles and find that many trees just don't live here anymore, is shockingly expected. Oaks are pretty much gone. Monkey Pod trees are struggling. Juniper have pods that are the size of capers. The huge pines that defined the canopy in my childhood yard are no more...they died years ago. The trees that thrive here are those that cooperate with buildings. Palms, Ficus, and light poles.
I'm connected. Despite being in a different web, the mind we call Google still connects me to the global mind. And, Facebook is always a good place for me to get messages from friends...and from the mind that hears my thoughts. So, it was no surprise when I received a FB share about Suzanne Simard's TED talk entitled "How Trees Talk To Each Other." Yes, we live in a web. On top of a web. We are not separate, but embedded in a global Intranet that so many of us don't realize we participate in.
I will adjust. I will find a way to relate to this concrete landscape. I will find my new network. After all, Carmel and Los Angeles are just one place...this place we call Earth. And, I will find my way in my new spot on our planet.