SpaceX "Mr Stevens" San Pedro, CA - 18 JUL 2018

On January 19, 2017, I wrote about SpaceX's Falcon 9; now we have "Mr Steven" docked on Terminal Island. Yes, Mr Steven is a strange name for a recovery vessel which will be used to catch the cast-off rocket fairings.
In April, the Port approved a 30 year lease on Terminal Island for SpaceX to build a manufacturing plant which will create it's future mega rocket. This is where Mr Steven is docked.
Weighing nearly 200,000 pounds and 200 feet long, it has been seen making impressive aggressive turns and sprints up to 20 knots (23 mph).
A test run took place yesterday and it must have been successful as we spotted them unloading a fairing.
Update: In January 2019, SpaceX pulled out of the Terminal Island lease, deciding to move the building of a rocket to Texas.

Lotus Festival, Echo Park, CA - 14 JUL 2018

Echo Park was modeled after Shipley Park in Derbyshire, England where the 1st superintendent of the Los Angeles Department of Parks, spent his boyhood summers. 
In 1890, shortly after the new governmental agency was created, the man-made reservoir was turned into a beautiful lake.
This 29-acre park has the largest lotus bed in the United States.
The 38th Lotus Festival was hosted this year by The People's Republic of China.
There were many vendor tents, food trucks, a beer garden and a constant flow of performers.
We heard a Chinese orchestra playing traditional instruments and songs. 
There was even a dragon boat race.
You never know what you will see in Los Angeles, such as this women walking her kitten.
Over the nearly 130 year history, this park has gone through more than one cycle of prosperity, decline, revival and renovation.
The WPA boathouse was constructed in 1932.
Lady of the Lake by Ada May Sharpless was sculpted in 1934 as part of the Public Works Art Project:
There are four bas reliefs on the pedestal:
 Central Library
 Los Angeles Harbor
 San Gabriel Mountains
Hollywood Bowl
There are all kinds of vegetation and wildlife.
The original lotus plant, Nelumbo nucifera, was introduced in the 1920's by the famed evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson, who's coliseum-esque church is across the street.
This plant can live for more that 1,000 years.
Apparently, not if it has to fight Los Angeles abuse, pollution and a mysterious blight... the last plant died in 2008.
There were several years when the Lotus Festival only had paper flowers.
The lake was drained in 2011, as part of a two year, $45 million rehabilitation project on the park.
The boathouse was refurbished, the lake was cleaned, a shooting fountain installed, along with fresh grass and a variety of native plants.
Best of all, was the reintroduction of the lotus from descendants of the original stock.
How was this possible?
In 2005, a Reseda horticulturist stole a single plant from Echo Park.
Being a reproduction specialist, he turn that one plant into a thriving business.
Seven years later, for $30,000, the city was able to purchase 376 lotus plants propagated from that stolen plant.
Who says crime doesn't pay?