The LA Diary

For the reading break of 2017, I made a bold and random decision- I booked my flight tickets to Los Angeles. I did not plan a to-do list, just booked an Airbnb in LA and I was set on for a surprise. Leading up to the trip, a Sri Lankan beauty and a Turkish lad joined me! Here is a time-series synopsis of one of the most amazing trips I have had so far!

Day 1

We arrived in LA around 11:15 AM and got our first shock. The Airbnb we had booked was on sale! Damn! We went in and tried to find a human in the house. A guy called ‘Jimmy’ was found on the first floor who was looked as confused as we were. He connected us to the wifi though. We called Ben, our Airbnb host, and apparently he was at a music festival so he didn’t pick up our call. Stranded, we booked another Airbnb and fortunately the host accepted it! But we couldn’t check-in until 7pm so we had 6 hours without a place to live and our vagabonding adventure in LA began. First, we tried renting a car but you need to be 25 years old to rent one so that didn’t work. We ended up calling a Lyft and the lady was amazing showing us the Venice area. She dropped us at the Santa Monica Pier and with our luggage, 3 of us were wandering the Santa Monica Pier absorbing the beauty of this amazing city!

We finally found a cafe with free wifi and waited there until 7pm. We arrived home and Anna, our amazing host, got us settled. Two large double beds with a private washroom. Nothing better we could have asked for!

We finally made a good choice!

As we started unpacking, pooh, Anna’s Labrador, came by to say Hello! It was an amazing feeling after an ‘interesting and adventurous’ day.

Day 2

We left to explore Downtown LA. Walking around DT, we realized that we should get a metro pass so that our student pockets are not burnt before time.

We decided to go separate ways and I visited the Grand Central Market and had an amazing dining experience. It’s an open market with many famous shops serving a multitude of cuisines.

As I walked around the streets of LA, I saw some amazing works of art.

One our way back, we decided to take the bus back home. We lived on Brockton Avenue. Our dear friend Kaan entered ’Brokson’ Avenue on the maps and we ended up getting off in the middle of nowhere. A Lyft came to our rescue again.

As dinner time approached, Kaan insisted on going to In and Out Burger, a fast food chain that serves just Burgers and fries. We met the coolest Lyft driver from Greece as we headed there. Anyways, In and Out came out to be a disappointment my friends while I enjoyed a 12" burrito which was scrumptious!

As we were walking back, our insane Turkish friend wanted to drink coffee.

So we stopped for desserts and then headed back home.

Day 3

Both Kaan and Vinu went to Universal studios on Tuesday. I, in my pursuit to not do ‘touristy’ things, chose to explore the city on foot. I began my adventure in Beverley Hills.

What a gorgeous neighborhood. As I kept walking, I ended up in the design district of Hollywood. Eye-catching shops with flashy items ranging from clothes to furniture surrounded me. As I navigated the map, I decided to go to Studio city, in hopes of finding some studios! But apparently, studio city is an affluent area and one of the coolest one’s I ran into in LA.

It was an example of a perfect place to live! Compact, convenient and surrounded by nature.

After walking 5 miles and 3 hours, I decided to head back home. On my way back, I heard the announcement in the metro “ Get down here for the famous Hollywood walk”. I got off and walked down the lane of stars! It was an item on the bucket list that could now be checked off!

I had amazing Tacos for dinner from a shop on the corner where the house which only accepted Cash and it was delicious. I firmly believe that the best food does not come for $$$ rather it’s the ❤ that goes into it!

Day 4

As everyone woke up to a sunny day, we decided that it has to be a beach day so we were soon enroute Malibu! After some ups and downs navigating the way, we finally reached the Paradise- Surfrider beach!

Oh baby, what a beautiful place! I rented a Surfboard and went to hit the waves as my friends headed for lunch.

Aviation Nation

Although the tides were low, it was an amazing feeling lying on my board in the middle of the ocean with the sun above me and a fantastic view in front! I felt ecstatic!

My friends headed to Beverley Hills and I went to the Santa Monica beach to catch the sunset and call it a day. It was extremely soothing!

As I headed back home, it was another day full of fun and adventure well spent!

Day 5

We really wanted to go to Six Flags Magic Mountain but unfortunately it’s only open on weekends and public holidays in February and March. So we found a hidden gem- Knott’s Berry Farm!

We arrived there around 10:30 am.

As we planned our day according to ascending order of ride intensity, the sun blessed us with it’s shine and warmth on a cold day in Orange County.

My favorite ride was the Xcelerator. You launch at 82 mph in 2.3 seconds and in no time you are climbing up like in the picture below!

Xcelerator

Check out the fun in action here!

What I learnt

Travelling, for me, is a learning experience. Life in LA is dynamic and fun but it’s also hard for many. Interacting with the locals, I found how the tech boom has shot up prices and the cost of living in the area.

I also got time to reflect on some decisions I was divided on for the summer and got inspiration for another amazing business opportunity!

I witnessed how deeply the Latin American culture is embedded in the LA life. There’s at least one Mexican restaurant per block and Spanish is very widely spoken.

As I write this sitting at a coffee shop enjoying my last few hours in this city of hopes and dreams, I look forward to another escapade in another part of the world.

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