Tuesday, October 10, 2006

And the Rain Washed the Chalk Away.

I've been visiting Little Italy's, Chalk La Strada festival, every year since I moved to San Diego in 2001. For one weekend in October, tens of thousands of people descend on San Diego's Italian district to see artists cover the street with large murals painted in chalk.

At least that's how it used to be. While the festival's attendance has grown each year, the number of artists and their prominence has decreased. Before, several central streets were covered with incredibly talented artists. But with each passing year the number of artists and talent has sadly decreased and the locations of the chalk drawings have been pushed to obscure side streets. I'm not sure why this trend has occurred, but hopefully it gets reversed. Perhaps it is indifference on the organizers part since even their website doesn't mention this year's event.

Juliana and I drove down to Little Italy Sunday afternoon to peruse the ever shrinking namesake attraction. Due to the event's popularity, we walked a marathon distance from parked car to India Street, but we were more than rewarded when a tall string cheese mascot handed me some string cheese. I could happily subsist on a diet consisting solely of cheese.

We walked the event's circuit…exploring booths along the route…culminating in some tasty gelato at Caffe Italia. Jules said that there was an interesting art display placed along the Embarcadero so we ventured down to the water, passing by the city building along the way (I'm a big fan of the architecture).

Seemingly overnight, the San Diego weather has slipped to its evening winter chill, with the only visual indication of seasonal change being newly formed moody skies.

The Port of San Diego has sponsored an amazing public art project called Urban Trees. It features thirty art sculptures lining the Embarcadero. Jules and I had a wonderful time sauntering along the bay, stopping periodically to investigate the inventive structures.