I’m in Los Angeles! It’s 7am here and I’ve just woken up. Eight hours sleep even. I’m sitting in my snazzy hotel suite at The Hotel Roosevelt, just along Hollywood Boulevard. Last night, after arriving in the city, I found myself sitting by the pool all afternoon & evening—cocktail after cocktail in my hand, gossiping with a new friend (Hi Arnette!) and collecting tips for the city of angels.
The past two weeks have been an incredible whirlwind—Berlin, Chicago, road tripping in Illinois, Boston and now Los Angeles. I’ve never felt so professional, so silly, so alive. I know I haven’t updated this blog while I’ve been traveling; I’ve just been too busy tweeting and ‘gramming my way across the USA. But don’t worry: I’ve actually written a handful of travel blogs for everything I’ve been up to—they’re just in my handwritten journal. I’ll transfer them online here soon enough, but in the meantime, I wanted to share with you what I’m feeling now.
Because, as a friend recently wrote to me: “It’s what makes us awesome: all the feelings (!!) and all the thinking.”
Today, I’m feeling excited. I’ve never felt so confident about what it is that I do. I feel really good about life right now and am so excited to see what’s going to happen next. This travel writing/travel blogging life has had its ups and downs. Writing this blog for over 5 years, I’ve learned a lot about the world, but also about myself. And today I’m excited about who I am and where I’m going. Let’s hope LA doesn’t kill those dreams—this is supposed to be the city that either makes or breaks you and here I am, laid bare, ready for the next adventure.
But while I’m excited about my professional future, I’m also just excited about life. And really—isn’t that what’s important here? My week around Illinois with new friends was one of the best holidays I’ve been on. I felt alive while visiting Chicago: staying in a trendy hotel, hopping in cabs to get around the city (and the metro, too), visiting old friends and making new ones. Road tripping through the state for a week led to more new adventures and a lot of funny stories (which you’ll get here on the blog soon enough). It’s those random and small adventures you get while traveling that can rejuvenate life. It’s what gives me energy, excitement, passion for life. It’s the “adventure” of travel—regardless of how adventurous your travel experiences may be.
Boston did the same. I spoiled myself by booking an expensive, trendy hotel. For the only reason because I wanted to stay somewhere nice, to enjoy that little bit of luxury for a weekend reunion. When I went out, I just did what I wanted to do—using my credit card to make sure I enjoyed every moment of my short weekend. Sometimes you just have to spend money blindly (within reason), without worry about consequences. And even better if you get to enjoy a surf & turf dinner with amazing cocktails. Life’s an adventure, but if you don’t enjoy it — what’s the point?
Today I’m in Los Angeles. I’ve had a strange obsession with Los Angeles for over a year now. I recently discovered Los Angeles is the sister city to Berlin and found that fact surprising—what similarities might these two big cities share?! I’ve seen the city in a hundred different TV shows and movies. Friends who live here now or have lived here in the past have offered up so many different perspectives, so many different ideas of what this city is like. I’ve watched the YouTube clips from West Hollywood vloggers. I follow a lot of LA instagrammers. But now I’m here and I’m ready to see it for myself.
A few months ago I stumbled on this YouTube miniseries (see below) from an LA comedian, Jimmy Fowlie. The series, “Go-Go Boy Interrupted,” hooked me from the very beginning—not just because of all the hot guys in underwear—but because it seems like a window into a world I don’t know. I spend so much time on YouTube exploring new things and new places. But every now and then, we’ve got to get out and explore the world too… (Random side note: I kind of always regretted never being a go-go dancer.)
I’m super curious about Los Angeles. A city full of beautiful people, where life seems to be perfect (but I’m certain it’s not—because where really is perfect?). Is LA the city of dreams? I want to see what the city is like, what the people who live here are really like. Does the city live up to its ridiculous stereotypes? Is it cool here, or is it pretentious? Is gay life in Los Angeles all that it’s cracked up to be? I don’t really care—but I’m in “travel mode” so I’m ready for whatever adventure might come my way this week.
I was born and raised in LA, and moved to Europe in July 2014. Only now that I’ve been out for a while, have I really begun to understand what exactly Los Angeles is.
Living there I hated it. Being away, I don’t miss it, but I’ve come to appreciate it more. Warm weather year round, beaches, fresh fruit, kale and acai bowls are pretty hard to beat. However, even when I come back I remember what I didn’t like. The stereotype rings true, at least for me. Los Angeles is LaLa Land, a place that isn’t real. People are always friendly, and in my experience most conversation stays shallow. At least that’s how I see it after living in European culture, where people tend to be a lot more real (at least the ones I have the pleasure of knowing).
However, that all being said, it makes a hell of a place to hang out. I have a blast whenever I go home now. I enjoy the LalaNess of it all, it’s a vacation (these Parisians are so serious). I get tan, eat my Chipotle, and enjoy being able to justify driving everywhere. The city is huge and there are so many completely different parts of it, and I wish you nothing but the best there :)
You and us both! We’ve had a strange obsession with LA – maybe it’s just that we’re all hypnotized by the beauty of the mountains, the beach, and okay, let’s be the real, the people. We had no idea it was a sister city to Berlin, but maybe that’s why we’re all obsessed with both Berlin and LA; in reality, they’re both completely widespread and have a creative and progressive vibe in their own ways. We’ll be moving out to LA in July, so we can most definitely keep you updated on what we think of what’s it’s reaaaaaally like to live there!
LA definitely has some attractive qualities! It’s cool that you’ll be moving out there – will definitely be curious to get more of your perspective on the city. I remember your Hollywood video from a while ago – just yet further proof of devouring anything and everything about Los Angeles!
Interested to see what you think of the city after your week there, Adam. To be honest, there aren’t many cities in the US that really entice me to visit, and everything I’ve heard about LA (among some of it, stereotypes I’m sure) makes it sound like my idea of hell: huge and sprawling, terrible public transport, populated entirely with vacuous, entitled, vain people. Maybe I’m just too European to be drawn to it, but I’d happily be proven wrong! Have fun!
Yep – those are all the stereotypes I’ve heard of LA as well – and why I’ve stayed away for so long. But there’s this sort of fascination I’ve got with the LA lifestyle. And, I have to admit—after two days here, I’m definitely enjoying the attractions here ;-) but I do wonder what it would be like to live here….
Full report coming on up!
each place has its own stereotypes, the best is to go there and simply check :)
True! Always good to get some time to explore places on your own :)
I never heard that Los Angeles and Berlin are city sister. They are not. I am a nomad, not a traveler. I have lived in five cities one of them in a different continent. I lived in Berlin for two years and a half and I lived in L.A for two months and fifteen years in S.F. The traffic was horrible in L.A. even if I didn’t take the freeway. And the weather was only nice in the Spring and Autumn. It was hella cold in the winter. San Francisco was only warn two days in October but the transportation is awesome. Bart and Muni were everywhare faster and on time. Plus, I am walker. I could walk blocks in ALL of San Francisco. Very similar to Berlin, except that it was not freezing cold in the Winter in Berlin. However, L.A got colder even more than S.F. Now I will admit Los Angeles people were friendlier. I used to get invited to party by freaking strangers in expensive cars. I didn’t get on any because I am originally from NYC. but L.A.is nothing like Berlin. I eventually moved back to S.F and was just content to keep visiting L.A. Latwr on I moved to Miami amd South Beach and Wilton Manor I like more than S.F or L.A. I do love Cali and hpw liberal it is. I love that it was so easy to get good weed in S.F. In L.A. I had to show my prescription, not the card, I do love that in Cali I could drive to Lake Tahoe if I wanted snow and in the same month drive to Venice Beach or Mission Beach in San Diego. However, for now I stay in Miami.
Rather than pay through the nose for a suite at the Roosevelt or to stay at the W I rented a lovely little house and lived the Hollywood dream i the Hollywood Hills in Laurel Canyon. Swimming in a pool with a view over the city. Now that’s the real LA.
That sounds amazing, Andrew! I do often find that renting an AirBNB or likewise is a good way to feel like a local, too — especially if you get a swimming pool!
[…] after spending a few nights there last spring, and one long Sunday (funday) afternoon, I quickly fell in love. Located directly on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the hotel’s large lobby plays host to a […]