I hope you've all had a wonderful start to 2015! A friend of mine came to visit last week, so I wasn't able to really blog or get back to comments. I didn't even have a chance to read other blogs, which has left me feeling really behind. I have, however, been posting bits on Instagram and tweeted little snippets of what I've been up to.
Make sure you're following, if you aren't already!
Anyway. How've you all been?
I went to the Getty Villa last week while my friend was here. It's one of those places where I want to take everybody -- the drive up is beautiful, it's right by Malibu, and the place itself is breathtaking. It wasn't as amazing as it usually is because it's winter and all, but man. It's still a sight to see.
In the spring and summer, the garden here is gorgeous. To the left there's a path led by towering grape vines, while trees fat with fruit line the main walkway. In the winter, it's a little more barren, but the herbs are still alive and well.
If you go when the sun is warm, you can smell the lemon thyme hugging you in a deliciously fragrant embrace. It wasn't as strong this time around, but the scents still wafted through the chill air.
The really strong, cold, never-dying breeze.
As you walk through and head on up to the second garden (or the outer peristyle), you run into these two fountains. My favorite is this little guy. I forget what his name is, but he's riding a wineskin that spews out water. I think it's funny because he kind of looks like he's peeing. In some weird way.
What I think is special about the Getty Villa is that it was built in the image of an ancient Roman country house from the first century. Specifically, the Villa dei Papri. After the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, the actual villa was left un-excavated. The architecture of this Pacific Palisades Villa reflects that of homes that existed in places such as Pompeii, and the gardens are stuffed with statues that make you feel as though you are walking through a slice of history.
So it's a somewhat reimagined or creative take on what that Villa dei Papri might have looked like.
And it's beautiful.
The Getty, conscious that California is currently in a drought, has turned off most of their water features. I haven't seen this pool fountain filled with water, but I hope I will get to someday.
And my favorite bit! They have umbrellas for use all over the villa. They have them for visitors on the sunnier days, acting as parasols. Mostly the tour groups use these, but if the sun is ever too much for you, you can grab an umbrella and take a stroll around the grounds.
If you go inside, feel free to drop them off in any of the holding containers and pick another up when you're back outside.
After you're done roaming around the gardens, it's time to head inside. You can go upstairs for much of the art, as well as some breathtaking views of the gardens below. A different perspective makes you want to spend hours looking at the gardens...again.
And you know what? It's totally worth it, because the different vantage point allows you to see bits you might not have been able to appreciate otherwise.
Can you see the ocean on the horizon?
A quick walk down the corridor and past the marble sarcophagus above leads you to a view of the outdoor theatre.
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