Diary for Daniel Tours America

Los Angeles: Hollywood; Santa Monica and Venice beaches


Here in Los Angeles it was Memorial Day, and so the families with kids were out in force.  I spent most of the day on the beaches at Santa Monica and Venice.  There were not quite as many bikini-clad valley girls as I expected, but far too many kids with parents.   Also on the beach was a large anti-war memorial, a collection of 4000+ wooden crosses in the sand to represent the soldiers killed in Iraq.   Many flags were at half-mast today, a touching gesture.

The beaches are just beautiful, wide near-white immaculate sand and weed-free waters protected by a reef just 50m out to sea.  I wondered up and down the promenade and dodged the many many weirdos and crazies.  Even the street traders here are crazy:  they sell bundles of sage, they ask for money to `support a stoner` (ie. to buy pot at my expense), they dress-up like sailors to sing....  but it was very entertaining.  I spent a long time listening to the beautiful voice of a street performer, even buying a CD of her work.  She was not bad to oggle at either.

In the morning I wondered up from my hostel along Hollywood Blvd, looking at the stars` plaques on the floor (I knew maybe 1% of the names) until I reached the Chinese theatre, where many premiers are held and where there are several hand prints on the floor.  I noted with interest that apparently actors in the 1940s to the 2000s wore shoes that did not have tread; it was only the Harry Potter casts` shoe print that showed the tread on the soles.  How odd.... or how fake.

I rode the bus to the beaches like a pauper.  Never again.  The bus network in LA sucks big time, it took me 1:45 and 4 vehicles to get 10 miles. Half the buses don`t stop in the right places.  Was a mess; no wonder commuters prefer the jams in their cars.

Tonight I finally grabbed my guitar from the boot of my car, and participated in the hostel talent show.  It was a bit of a poor turn out, with me and only two other performers; but we all had a good time.  The evening finished with charades (apparently the Aussies can`t play this game and don`t know the rules).

This morning I awoke to discover that in my dorm of 6 I was the only male, and that I was surrounded by gorgeous 19 year old Norwegian babes, many of whom were strutting around in their underwear.  It`s a hard life.   Everyone here except me seems to be on their way home from Oceania to Europe, everyone is closing their gap year in Australia.  All the flights come through LAX I suppose.