Everyone here has apologized for the rain. Waiters, even. As if i came all this way just to turn up my nose on Los Angeles just because it is soggy.
I have been tempted to write about it, but every attempt to pre-compose in my head has made it all seem so minimal. That’s why i have been taking pictures – better to show the moments that have made me want to write than fail to capture them later.
Returning from the airport, we turned up a street that offered a perfect, scenic view of the Hollywood sign, framed by a nearly doubled rainbow. Somehow, in all of my planning, i had forgotten that i would come face to face with this formidable national landmark. The moment was to rare to interrupt by taking a picture; i had arrived.
I don’t know what i actually expected from Los Angeles. I suppose a clue is that for the entirety of my first day i kept singing “Why You’d Want To Live Here” in my head. I expected the air to be dirty, the people to be surly, and the buildings to be tall.
Apparently, i’m not in that bit of LA. That’s the bit you don’t want to visit. I am in the bit roughly three miles south of Sunset & Vine. Every house looks different from the next; there are no cookie-cutter row homes. For two days we were down the 405 at the Manse where SL nannies. It was, of course, the nicest house i had ever been in; my favorite part was that the two story living room had a second living room that overlooked it from the top of the stairs. I just loved the idea of a house with an interior balcony.
It seems that my adventures to this point have been few, but i am a vacationer more than a tourist, so for me it is about being somewhere, not doing or seeing something. Aside from discovering my thirsty lust for Tanqueray Cosmos, so far i have shopped at The Grove, eaten sushi, walked through Ventura Beach, jammed on the mansion’s baby grand piano, had fresh avocado omelets, and went to Amoeba Music.
I am on my own now, in Laurel’s house; SL back with her children, and Laurel off to Costa Rica for vacation. On Saturday we made three small excursions to help me understand the lay of the land; no number streets here. On one i went to Amoeba music, which i adored and cost me more than it should have. On another we wound up on that same block, but by a different route, standing on Michael Jackson’s star. I was left with a rather imposing book of street maps and a small compass to aid me in subsequent adventures (which, as some of you know, is just the way i like it). All that’s left is to decide whether i brave it on foot, chance having Laurel’s bike stolen, or laze my way there via buses and cabs.
Finally: the entire time, from arrival at PHL last week, I have been reading Harry Potter books. I found them unimpressive up until five, which was the powerhouse i had been anticipating the entire time. Funny how popular mythologies are so similar; Rowling’s scenes are so similar to ones i penned in my never-finished pubescent novel, from the Hogwarts Express to encounters with the ArchVillain. Yet, i have been sitting here since i finished, wondering: Where is my opus?
I think the answer is that i’ve had a few already, and there still may be some to come.