Street Lamp, Mono Lake, CA

May 10: The street lamp at the end of East Mono Lake Drive caught my attention because it seemed a bit out of place, framing the stretch of empty desert that picks up where the road stops. The best thing is that the lamp remains dark at night, not spoiling the sense of nature and giving a curious edge to the absurdity of the lamp's being there at all.

At night, the distant lake is more felt than observed, yet this is one of my favorite Mono Lake scenes, suggesting the gentle eeriness of the larger setting without relying on the lake itself. (It also faintly echoes the surrealism of the Magritte show I'd so enjoyed in San Francisco). Well, it turns out that Arya, the conservation intern who's also living here, pretty much made that scene possible. According to rumor, anyway, she hadn't liked the light shining through her window at night, eventually borrowed a gun and shot it out...