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Monday
May092011

Wanderer Of The World: Los Angeles

My trip to La La Land turned out to be so dreamy. Somewhere between the blindingly blue skies, the sturdy, sky-high palm trees, the Hollywood Hills homes that looked liked like they had been drawn up for Dwell and the vats of open space, I was puckered right to life.

I feel like California should be an adjective.

Pulling onto the freeway for the first time, listening to rad music {Miike Snow's "Black & Blue" was my California mantra} while driving down the Pacific Coast Highway to Venice Beach, lounging at the Beverly Hills pool with oversized sunglasses like you were evading the paparazzi, eating at celebrity owned restaurants like Beso {hello, Eva Longoria!} all felt so...California. Like the real world failed to vacuum up this bronzed, blonde bubble of life on the West Coast. 

Refreshing. Energizing. Spirited. California.

Naturally, we did all of the tourist-trap stuff. Cruising the Hollywood Walk of Fame, eating at Pink's Hot Dogs, shopping on Rodeo Drive and peeling down Mulholland Drive to gawk at celebrity homes. But the beaten path is never what drives me to places.

Instead, our favorite thing was the amazing views from the Griffith Observatory. I highly recommend visiting if you ever touch your wheels down in Los Angeles. We watched the sky go from peachy pink to yellowing copper to stale black as the sun disappeared. We hiked around trails that left us floating above LA and feeling like we were on top of the world. It felt so invigorating and freeing to be in the maze of a sprawling city like Los Angeles, but hidden from the madness. We felt alone. Which for parents who have been married for five years, is special.

I also especially loved the Getty Museum. It is by far the most gorgeous museum I have ever visited. The pure white buildings splashed into the beautiful blue sky in a way that was pure jaw dropping. You can see all of LA, including views of the beach all the way to Malibu!

Luckily for me, while my husband was tied up with business during the day, one of my closet friends, Rafael, a fashion photographer, was in town. He used to live in the area and played my tour guide for a couple days. His sister even has a house in Beverly Hills! We zipped all over the city in his Mercedes Benz setting up mini photo shoots. I felt like I was on the set of a movie!

Remember when I told you that many of my friends, both from Cali and NYC, told me that if you love New York you can't love LA? Well, it's not true. LA is super nifty. I will say that the smog definitely doesn't flatter tinsel town. I grew bored of driving around in the car {traffic is a little crazy!}. Since living in NYC I've grown addicted to walking, melding into the streets. And at moments, the bubble felt too fake, too contrived. However, comparing the two places is like comparing apples to oranges.

But when I got off the plane at JFK, I was giddily happy to be back, reunited with my {Big} apple.

Have any of you ever been to Los Angeles? What did you like, or not like about it? Any recommendations you'd like to share? If you haven't, what is the furthest west you've ever been?

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Reader Comments (2)

Sounds and looks like you had a wonderful time.
My DH and I went to LA about 15 years ago for a friends wedding. We had a lot of fun doing all the touristy things.. Even got to see the Jay Leno show..
Also, seeing a wedding on the beach was AMAZING.. loved seeing the sun set

May 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMikki

Glad you had fun here! We had great weather while you were and the skies didn't resemble the post-apocalpytic, Skynet-induced megaton cloud of smog they normally do.

The Getty is incredible, isn't it?

The next time you come, check out Abbot Kinney and Malibu. Amazing places. We go to Zuma Beach all the time and see dolphins, seals, etc.

~Charlie, HowToBeADad.com

May 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie

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