Sunday, 13 June 2010

Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow, Verdict.

Yesterday

The Greyhound bus station is a 20 minute walk from my hostel, down 7th street in Downtown Los Angeles. Yesterday we went to buy our Discovery Passes which we'll be using to traverse this huge country over the next 6 weeks, and my nerves about being in such a visibly rundown area soon turned to something resembling anger. Here we were in one of the richest countries in the world, a global super power, where at one end of the street you'll find the sparkling high-rises of the financial district, and at the other, the grubby, derelict streets where the homeless, poor, cracked-out people stare with blank eyes outside shops where food-stamps are the currency of choice. When it comes to stark opposites, London doesn't even come close.

As the Greyhound depot came into view, so did two huge warehouses on the opposite side of the road. Black and white posters about America's immigration policy were stamped onto the sides, while from street to roof, broken windows thick with dirt gave a blurry insight into what lay within: reams of fabric and machinery.

American Apparel apparently has the highest earning clothing workers in the world, and that, ladies and trendybops, is where they're based.

Today

Today we bought a $5 all day metro ticket and did 'LA in a Day' - first stop, Hollywood Boulevard. After putting our hands and feet in the cemented prints of the the rich, famous and fictional, we watched Tom Hanks get out of his limo across the road and have his picture taken with Woody and Buzz from Toy Story 3.

Can't beat a bit of timing.

Tomorrow

The overnight Greyhound bus will be dropping us in San Francisco at the ungodly hour of 7:30am.

I'll be mostly irritable from lack of sleep.


Verdict on LA


The next time you're travelling and someone tells you to avoid an area, don't. Walk down the grubby streets, see what's there, then make up your own mind. But err, if it's 7th street in Downtown LA...do it in daylight.

6 comments:

theperpetualspiral said...

LA is next on my list of places to visit in the USA. I shall make sure I do the dodgy areas in daylight just for you.

What route does your American adventure take you?

The Unbearable Banishment said...

You'll have a much nicer time in SF, I'll bet. It's certainly prettier. LA always creeped me out a bit, although you get to see real movie stars on occasion.

London-Lass said...

Never been to LA but shall heed your advice if I ever end up out there.

Elaine said...

My son was in LA in January. He absolutely loved it and is going back in 6 months. Not sure what he saw there...not sure I want to know, lol. Oh...how I wish I were there with my camera....

Lap it up like a hungry bitch, Jo. This is such an opportunity.

Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

Perp - At the moment we're in San Francisco, next stop is Las Vegas. After that, we're just winging it really. Probably keep south, go to some random states, see what happens. :)

Unbearable - SF is beautiful. I love it. LA was indeed a little strange, not what I expected at all, so different from the glamourous side portrayed in the films. But seeing Tom Hanks was definitely a plus!

Londonlass - Haha, not that I'm telling you to go to downtown LA, but worth seeing the non touristy side of a city I reckon.

Elaine - Yeah I know some people who have gone to LA and absolutely loved it. For me, I'm glad I went - but San Francisco is topping it by a mile at the moment. I'm having an amazing time already. 6 weeks to see whatever I want!

heybartender said...

Are you assuming that people don't get mugged in the middle of the day? Don't. They do. Be careful.

 

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