Thank goodness there’s a way out, an exit from Las Vegas. I was sprawled in the back of Ron, too meh to do anything. A swift swerve in the driving had me jolt awake, apparently there was an oversized tumbleweed crossing the road. At the gas station there was a car painted with ‘The road to Coachella’. I felt a little green, not from the weekend but of envy, where we were supposed to go but tickets had sold out. Ah well.
There was an outlet shopping town on the way to Los Angeles that we were going to stop by in. We couldn’t find it and then couldn’t be bothered. I spilled melting margarita mix and water on me simultaneously instead. By the time we’d reached the freeways into LA at peak hour, we were kind of over it. I snacked on the everlasting bag of Doritos. Seriously, I don’t buy chips because if I open them I’ll victoriously defeat them in one sitting, and then feel sick. This oversized family bag had been going strong between four of us, for a week. When my fingers turned orange, they were put away.
Five and six lanes of merging madness and trying to cope with Carmen and her cryptic GPS ways, Snitch got us to our Air BnB location safely, in Noho. Dinner was at a cute generation-run Japanese restaurant, down the road. The grandmother came over once our meals had arrived, stopped and stared at Snitch’s fish wide-eyed and ready to pounce, then commented with her face almost touching the plate.
“Look good! Mmmm mmmmm.”
We really didn’t have any plans for Los Angeles. Since we hadn’t really done any yet, we started at a mall. Not overly massive in size, but full of shops that were worth spending time and money in. I was being good and refraining, while Snitch and No.2 decked out their wardrobes. Although I was convinced by one piece that Snitch wouldn’t let me leave J Crew without. Eight hours, lunch and dinner and we were finally out.
The next day I drove us through Beverly Hills and all of its fanciness, and also had my biggest freak out moment driving in The States. The rule of pretty much who gets to a cross intersection first, goes, had me second guessing my driving abilities. But when you pull up to a massive six-way intersection that could fit a large roundabout inside of it and warranted some traffic lights, had me semi squealing at the wheel as I made a break for it and bravely steered ahead.
Rewards are sweet. Rodeo Drive was intentionally a touristy stop and look. What actually happened was a purchase of some gorgeous wee coral heels from Coach. They were on sale, otherwise I may have had to sell a kidney first. I’m sure one of the cosmetic surgeons tucked in amongst the stores would’ve obliged. Then there was more shopping at The Grove, purely for Snitch’s search of a specific top that was sold out at the mall the previous day. Some other items may have jumped into the bags, too.
On check-out day, the empty branded carry bags littered our room. So we thought that it would probably be a good idea to don fabulous dresses and visit the Hollywood walk of fame, on our exit from the onslaught of shoppingsville.
At the stars there was a small crowd gathered on the street, which was our precursor for parking up and having a good nosey, star-spotting the tail end of Larry King and Jay Leno tiredly acknowledging some event. I managed to take a couple of pictures from behind a man who had rips across the seat of his pants, exposing his hairy butt cheeks. I also got hit on by a man on the pedestrian crossing who thought I should take him back to “Nu Zeeland in yo Gucci suitcase.” No.2 said I should be flattered, because he thought I would actually own a Gucci suitcase.
There were a few characters atop those star-lined streets. There was the hustler who was interrupted by another hustler, asking him a simple question. He was pissed off.
“Would you stop a surgeon during surgery? ‘Cause I’m the surgeon and I’m performing surgery right now.”
And then he had to yell out to the other disinterested hustlers across the road and inform them of his major plight.
There was also the parade of chanting Korean church enthusiasts that bobbed signs insisting that we should believe in Jesus so that we could go to Heaven. They seemed to follow us up and across to Graumann’s Chinese Theatre. We lost them at the platform view of the Hollywood sign.
With a lot of miles to cover and places to visit that day, our next stop was Santa Monica Pier for lunch. We got to feel the sand crunch under our toes, the warm salty air cleanse our souls, and the seafood and giant Corona wash away our worries. Being a good driver, I just indulged in the amazing looking and tasting lemon and white chocolate cake.
Ron was in cruise control, taking us up the Pacific Coast Highway. Through Malibu, Santa Barbara and stopping in Saint Ynez for a ‘holy heck how can I eat all of that?’ Mexican meal. With a couple of hours still to get to our Motel in Morro Bay and the darkness of the night sky that had descended, weariness had let itself known… until we neared arrival and saw a sign that read ‘California Men’s Colony’. “Oh that’s where they all are!” came from the back seat.
And that’s where I’ll leave you for now, wondering what a men’s colony is. The end of the Cali road trip blogs is near; with zebra sightings, otters in love and buying the best pants in the world. Until then, google ‘men’s colony’ and find out what it is for me.