I admit it. I never really gave L.A. much thought. Growing up in New York it was always the other coast. The one people moved to but weren’t from. The town where more things were fake then real. A place to dismiss. I’d been a few times when I was younger and it never left a real impression on me. And then, my son Thomas decided it was where he wanted to go to college. California, and Los Angeles specifically were his dream. And so last week, during the generously long Japanese National Holiday, Tom and I took the girls to L.A. I went with an open mind and learned a lesson.
God must have a special place in his heart for Southern California as everything grows taller and greener than any other metropolis I’ve visited. Maybe its because I live in an incredibly urban concrete city but I was seeing life in Technicolor! Every lawn was lush and thick, the hundreds of species of trees all different but perfect, side by side. The people all looked so healthy! The tan skin, the white teeth, the bright eyes. The perfect hair. One more gorgeous then the next. Everywhere I turned I saw beauty. And the food! I don’t think we had a bad meal. From the corned beef hash with hash browns and eggs at the counter for breakfast to the grilled vegetable salads and the endless iced teas to the red velvet cake and the gnudi with morels and the Diddy Reise ice cream sandwiched between chocolate chip and peanut butter cookies. Oh my word.
After walking around the UCLA campus Tom and I couldn’t come up with a reason why everyone didn’t choose to go to college in Southern California.
Who doesn’t love a town that revolves around the movie industry! Romance, adventure, horror, glamour – some of the best nouns around. I can’t say the same for the finance industry.
Valet Parking!!! I love it. Just pull up in front of your restaurant of choice and someone will take your car and park it and bring it back when you need it – all for less than $10!
There must have been an American Apparel and a cool hip coffee boutique on every corner. Need a new tank top or leggings? A triple grande mocha half caf? At any hour of the day?
And the chance to see real live celebrities at any possible moment. In five days we saw at least five certifiable stars. The girls were going nuts. You never saw such eagle eyed awareness in teenagers before.
And there aren’t many sights that beat the Pacific Coast Highway in either direction. Just moments from downtown L.A.
So yes, L.A. is not a town to dismiss – quite the opposite. And thankfully I have one great reason to return – Thomas is only a Freshman!