LOS ANGELES EDITION /// Stephanie
San José (Costa Rica) — Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania) — Melbourne — Oslo — Los Angeles
I admit, I totally moved in town for a boy! That’s how L.A. happens. We were both students of architecture. Then I got a job and he didn’t. He moved away and I stayed. And I’m still here!
I study and work in the field of architecture and design. My current focus is on design research in places with water scarcity. I’m investigating future ways for facilitating common water collection strategies like rainwater harvesting and stormwater capture within local communities. I research especially lower income areas which are at a higher risk given climate change and California’s centralized water infrastructure.
I split my time between Los Angeles and Toronto. Toronto is a very generic city; Los Angeles is harder to understand — it’s so many things at the same time. There’s a very different feel in between areas like Echo Park than to Downtown or South L.A. or the Valley. I spend most of my time in between Downtown, Little Tokyo, Art’s District, Echo Park, Silver Lake and Los Feliz — Atwater Village too at times. I used to live in Culver City, which is nice but nothing above that, but finally followed my weird fascination to East Hollywood.
In L.A., I like the amount of bookstores, mixture of cultures and the proximity of the mountains. Cultural diversity brings diverse cuisine and the weather enables the great bike culture the city has. You can practically take few hours and bike to the top of a mountain. You will be cursing your way as you go up but when you get to the top, it is all worth it. You get a thrilling perspective to the city and some serious legs! Not to forget the ride down!
I don’t drive at all so sometimes the distances do get annoying. I’ve made the most of it with my bicycle but at times the expectations of other people don’t meet the reality of a cyclist. Some people just can’t comprehend the concept of life without a car. I’ve learned to make the radius of my life as short as possible.
L.A. is a heaven for hardcore cycling souls — you can do long distance, you can do mountains.. whatever you do, you got company! There are many active groups for cyclists. One of my favourite ones is She Wolf Attack Team (SWAT) — they do rides on Tuesday and Thursday nights: