Friday, January 13, 2012

First Impressions of LA

Like everyone said, the weather here is great. It has been 70 degrees every day with the sun shining. And it's January! You can hear the birds chirping, and the leaves on the trees are lush and green. The mornings are the perfect workout temperature, but the evenings are cold and sitting inside encourages a sweatshirt. My suitcase was packed with light winter clothes, and I have been wearing those, which is weird since you don't think of wearing winter clothes when it's 70 degrees out.

The amount of cars on the road is staggering. It never stops. There are no left turn signals on the traffic lights or jug handles, so you spend half your day in the middle of an intersection, trying to make a left turn. I haven't driven yet, but I am super intimidated by the roads and wondering how I will ever figure it out.

The amount of hipsters here is also staggering. Yesterday, we saw multiple men wearing 1980s-style fedoras. Why?

Our friends have been lovely. We have been staying with Brett and Emily in their Silverlake cottage, and they have bent over backwards to make us feel welcome. I have been sick with a cold all week, and it's tough feeling unwell in someone else's home, but they have been so cool about it. We have met some of their friends, including Jonathan, who I already adore, and everyone so far has been kind and encouraging.

Brett Jackson is one of the hardest working people in show-biz. I have watched him work relentlessly and tirelessly on his screenplay all week for hours and hours and hours, and his work ethic is impressive and inspiring. Just wait until they discover him.

I have talked more about the film industry in the last week than I've had in the past year.

I had my first meal at Ara's parents' house. I have been hearing about these famous Armenian feasts from Dan for years. Ara's mom made us a yummy beef wonton soup with broth and homemade garlic yogurt. She also served us these fig pastries that were so intricate, I was sure they were made with a mold, but they were actually handmade. Ara's parents have agreed to store our moving boxes until we find a home, and we're so grateful for that. The movers came this week, and it was so surreal to see the boxes we packed in New York here in California.

Our entire life in 40 boxes.

We went to The Library Bar at the Roosevelt Hotel to meet Jonathan's new boyfriend, Peter. This bar is lined with fresh and exotic ingredients, and you tell the bartender what you are in the mood for or what flavors you like, and he makes a drink based on that. My drink was pretty tame with muddled strawberries and balsamic vinegar, but some of the other drinks featured arugula or lavender. It's there we had our first celebrity sighting: Ricky Schroder. He sat with his back to us, and we had a nice view of his butt crack all night.

I have started a routine of eating my breakfast outside on the porch with Alfie the dog. It is what I always imagined my life in California being like.

I am thinking very hard, trying to remember street names and where things are and figuring out what people are talking about and piece everything together. I know nothing, and I ache for things to be familiar. Dan and I have been sleeping on two twin beds in Brett's office. It is a dark and cool room. I have never slept so long or deeply, nor my dreams so vivid.

New York or LA, I still hate job searching.

I am trying to teach myself some web design this week. I am terrible at it. It might come to shock that I haven't figured it all out in one day.

Dan and I went on a run the other morning. I felt so lonely running in a place where there were few other runners. I looked around me and for a moment it all looked so strange to me that felt like I was on another planet. I couldn't believe that this was actually my home now. I was experiencing culture shock, for sure. Since Dan is much faster than me, we separated in the run, and I forgot to make a turn and got lost. I found my way back because I recognized the McDonald's and Del Taco signs from our last visit here. American fast food, in any foreign place, will always save you and make you feel at home.


Anonymous said...

I agree, a city which grew up on the backs of cars and traffic, and does not have left turn signals or turn pockets. Everytime I come to L.A. amazes me. But, I am sure you'll like California.

Willy The Prince said...

Sorry that you've been sick.

Hipsters? So you had to go 3,000 miles to end up in Brooklyn? lol

Driving is so scary to me after all these years of riding the rail.

You'll settle in. Can't wait to hear more about your adventures.

kunka said...

To be fair, you are currently lodging in the Hipster Capital of LA. Los Feliz is infested with them.

And as Dan can attest, I have been complaining about the lack of left turn signals for years! The key to not getting stuck? Totally avoiding them. I'll sometimes go through a light and make 3 rights to get back on the cross street without having ever gone left.

Susan said...

Yvonne, you'll figure out how to make LA "home" in no time! Just as soon as you get a job, your own place to live,a car, and learn to make those left turns...