Good day to all. Elaine has received both C19 shots from Pfizer. Her only side effect was a headache. Slow and steady goes the vaccines. Elaine and I decided to go for a trip to the beach for a picnic on the day before the second dose. I made a Jersey Mike’s style sandwich with olive oil, red wine vinegar, mayo and mustard from France, three meats, tomatoes, lettuce, and onions on a hoagie roll. She made a similar sandwich on deli bread.
The plan was to go have lunch at Huntington Beach. However, the HOV lane on the CA22 did not have an exit until the 7th Street exit to Long Beach. So, I decided to take a trip down memory lane. It is a little-known fact that Melody and I owned a house in Alamitos Beach one block north of Broadway Donuts. We had our best years (1997-2002) in California while living here. The house was built in 1914. I did not include a photo of it because it has been modified in bad taste in my opinion. We used to walk to the Long Beach Grand Prix. We enjoyed this residence while keeping it in original condition. Melody owned a 1999 Pontiac Grand Am at the time, the same car used in Lethal Weapon 4. We watched the movie production blow up the tanker sequence in the beginning of this film. This sequence was filmed within walking distance of our residence on Appleton Street just east of Alamitos Blvd. These were such great times. The film 52 Pickup was also filmed in Long Beach. Roy Scheider’s character drives an E-Type through the entire film. It is a cool movie, but not the typical Anne Margaret “Viva Las Vegas” plot. “SO LONG, SPORT!”
The Bluff Park area has the best-looking homes and the best views of the harbor and beach. After parking next to a curb that is taller than a medium-sized Lab, we walked along the upper sidewalk and enjoyed a beautiful day. The Catalina Island was as clear in view as I have ever seen it. The beaches were clean. The views today were fantastic. After eating my soggy and tasty sandwich, we decided to try the new bridge to San Pedro. The new bridge looks a lot like the Sunshine Skyway Bridge in Tampa Bay, only much smaller in size. This is a much better-looking bridge than the old one that used the toll booths. The speed limit is still 45mph? A quick review of the OG Gone in 60 Seconds will reveal 45mph signs on the same stretch of CA47! The views from the bridge were clear past Catalina. The water looked blue. It was a postcard view.
After a trip down crowded Gaffey Street, we arrived at Point Fermin area. After letting the house in Long Beach get away, Melody and I decided to rent an original property at 3613 S. Meyler Street. A developer in the 1920’s built a few houses before losing his shirt in 1929. This is one of those houses. There are hardwood floors and the original kitchen cabinets plus the wall heater. This residence included a huge two-car garage, perfect for my 1956 Imperial and 1981 Mercedes 300D with space left over. The 200 sq ft office in the back included a ladder to a deck on top. Unobstructed views of Catalina just made my day. The sunsets are the best that I ever remember since moving to CA. We lived here from 2003-2009 for very reasonable rent. After a quick trip down Paseo del Mar, where Don Draper drove his 1964 Imperial in Mad Men, we took a picture in front of the residence used to film the scenes where Don’s first wife lived.
As we headed back up Pacific Ave, I note that San Pedro is still the cool, undeveloped town that it has always been. The Bike Palace is still there, the old BofA near 10th Street still looks great. I noted British Motor Cars on Pacific still has a great selection of cars, including an E-Type parked inside the gate with the roof down.
Elaine’s S-Type V-8 must be one of the most under-rated Jags out there. This car is pleasant to drive around town, does U-turns on a dime, and puts the driver into another city block instantly when the right foot is put down. This car had some work completed for some minor leaks. Elaine is fussy about the smallest of leaks. Alex at First Class Autoworks has eliminated every single leak, I mean none, zero, nada fluids even after days of sitting. I did not know there was a Jaguar approaching 20 years old that did not leak a drop anywhere front to back. However, Elaine’s 2003 S-Type, with just under 100,000 miles, is one of these cars.
The trip from San Pero to Placentia only took 40 minutes. We had a fabulous day in a great Jaguar. We hope to do it again soon. Take care of each other everyone!
JOCLA Photographer and writer at large.