At the Valley Station at the base of the San Jacintos; the original blue tram bucket is to the left in the first pic:
"Hey there, hot chivo!" Inside the tram boarding lobby:
The tram conductor, jaw clenched and determined to get us to Mountain Station 10,801 feet above without giving in to smacking one of the tourist rugrats squealing at ear-bleeding pitch and running round and round:
Up, up, and AWAY! Chino Canyon down below:
Zipping on American wires in a fancy Swizz bucket between ancient rocks:
A marvelous view of my bony back and Dish Network ears:
"Hey babe, let's hang out at the balcony and take in the view, chill a while and maybe I'll catch up on this book I packed -- oh HEY, there's two empty seats at the bar!"
Three raspberry lemon drop martinis later:
The two guys to the left were on their honeymoon; they took pics of us and we exchanged e-mail addies -- they're planning a reception/nuptials celebration in San Diego. Eric, the one closest left, is a service union lobbyist and his husband is selling his house to mafiosos. And the het couple to our right worked on the set of the Sex and the City movie. They claim Chris "Mr. Big" Noth is an egomaniac who wouldn't talk to the crew even when directly asked work-related questions, surprise surprise. The blurriness is reflective of my buzzedness at the time. All in all, great conversation and a terrific bartender :)
So a couple of last-call beers after that, our lens-aiming and flash-using were a complete failure when the fireworks ten thousand-plus feet below began:
Contrary to the disclaimer posted at Valley Station that fireworks visibility wasn't a given, the fireworks from Sunrise Park in Palm Springs, Civic Center Park in Palm Desert, and a bit from Indio were in fact very visible, but you could barely hear them from that high above. There was a wonderful hush up there, watching below with the tourists from pretty much everywhere. And the climate so, so wonderfully cool aaaaah! Got to run now, may edit for coherence later.
Edited to add these random images of the view from Mountain Station by much more competent photographers:
(View from the restaurant balcony)