So I just got back from a four day trip in Los Angeles. I guess we can call it a work trip, but yeah, stories. All of which will be trickled out in the weeks to come, but believe me, it’s worth the wait.
I think I’ve said it before, but I love flying westward. It’s the only thing in my head that’s close to time travel. You takeoff, and you land having traveled for six hours but it only feeling like three.
When you step into LAX, you’re surrounding by all the trappings of any modern airport, but you notice as soon as you step off that you’re inundated by photos of celebrities. It’s a bit surreal when that level of worship hits you as soon as you step off the plane. Of course, it’s also a bit surreal when Tina Fey is waiting to pick up her oversized bag next to you.
The next thing that you realize is that there is really only one constant in Los Angeles, and that’s traffic. There is always traffic going everywhere at every hour of the day, and since LA is really a city where you need a car (public transit is not really a thing) that means I racked up about $300 worth of Ubers in about four days. Thank god I could expense it.
As soon as I landed and got checked in, I got whisked away to a studio lot for a whirlwind of interviews, tests, wardrobe fittings, and make up. But, let’s save that for another time. I had to leave my apartment in New York at around 5am to make the flight, and the timezone hopping got me into LAX at noon. All of the studio obligations took me about five hours, so I had been up for about 15 hours now, but at that point you’re at the mindset where you’re so tired that you’re wired, so I called up a car and headed to the coast.
I arrived in Santa Monica as the sun was starting to dip close to the horizon. Maybe it was the newness of it all, or the sleep deprivation from the night before, but the salty breeze off the Pacific awakened me. It was a perfect 65 degrees, which for a New Yorker was perfect in shorts and a sweatshirt, while the Californians were bundled in jackets. I waded my way past the throngs of people going back home, and I found myself a little spot on the pier behind a busker and settled in. There was a fog creeping in from the ocean, yet somehow instead of obscuring the waning sun, it cast a sort of mystical haze over the whole affair. The light from the sun diffracted through the fog, creating one of those picturesque sunsets that you imagine in your mind. The pictures don’t do it any justice. Maybe the Californians take it for granted, but as someone who rarely wakes up in time to catch the sunrises over the Atlantic, seeing the sun set over the Pacific was something else. It was an explosion of violet and pink, paired with the delirium of being up for too long with little sleep, made for a memory that won’t be leaving my memory for a long while.
That sunset would be the only one that I’d see for my whole trip out on the West Coast, so I’m glad I managed to sneak away from the wranglers to experience that for myself. After that, I grabbed some fish tacos and called it an early night. That was the best decision that I made all week, because the next few days would be punctuated by the surreal, the ridiculous, and experiences that I won’t forget for the rest of my life.