Lavanderias — Indian laundries — where Indians washed clothes every week water spouted forth from gargoyles and passed out from tile pools into orchards of fruit trees (pears, peaches, figs, etc.) vegetables, watermelons, sunken gardens were surrounded by adobe walls cactus planted along walls.

Not only did we find a bit of history and archaeology in the lavanderia, but we also found a few lizards and dozens of hummingbirds.

The hummingbirds liked to tease us by flying close to our ears and dive-bombing nearby plants. Never before in my California journeys have I seen so many hummingbirds. Lizards were a bit more aloof and vanished as we got close.

The sunken garden is a very peaceful and quiet section of the Mission San Luis Rey; it’s perfect for exploration and discovery. It’s sheltered from noise from the road and the bustling tourists that flow through the Mission.