14 HOURS TO LA
TRAVEL, TRAFFIC AND HALF & HALF
HONESTLY WE HADN’T THOUGHT OF THIS BUT HEARD FROM SEVERAL OF OUR AUSSIE FRIENDS THAT L.A. IS OFTEN THE DESTINATION OF CHOICE BECAUSE THE SYD-LAX FLIGHT IS A MILD 14 HOURS COMPARED TO THE 24+ TRAVEL TIME TO EUROPE. HERE WE ARE THINKING IT’S ALL BECAUSE ANGELENOS ARE SO COOL —ZING. EITHER WAY THIS GROUP OF FRIENDS WAS COMING FOR US AND WE’RE GLAD THEY DID.
“We got in touch with friends who had travelled, we emailed L.A. locals whose aesthetic we liked and asked them for suggestions. Then we honed in on what we wanted to do and where. We chose our accommodation based on accessibility. We wanted the variety of Venice and Koreatown. We knew how photogenic Palm Springs and its hotels were and considered the locations we could access from there.
We were struck by the driving culture and how kind Californians are. In Sydney people are beeping each other left, right and centre so you‘ve got to strategically plan your sprints across busy roads. If you take more than a hot second to pull off when the light goes green, you‘re getting fists shaken at you. In Cali everyone was relaxed, cars came to a complete halt to let us cross the road.
America gets a bad wrap for its food, but we were just awed by how accessible healthy, organic food is in California. America also gets a bad wrap for its coffee, but again, we felt spoilt for choice. The girls wanted me to add that half and half was a pleasant surprise.”
WE CAME FOR THE GRAM: PALM SPRINGS VIA L.A.
“I found the landscape very different from home in the best way. Sydney is very hilly, green and the roads are winding and don‘t always make sense. We all live coastal lifestyles and the beach is never more than a 15 minute drive away, with the city in between. Farmland is not more than half an hour away from that. We have the best of all worlds. L.A. is busier, the streets are wider and the sun is more gentle. I felt like we’d never finish exploring the city. I loved the mountain ranges surrounding the city on all sides, and how the Hollywood sign would pop into view so much more than expected. We loved the Spanish influence/architecture, and we were blown away by how many Instagrammable cafes and walls are everywhere. In Sydney you‘ve really got to search for these places.
Then there was the desert (Palm Springs, Salton Sea, Slab City and Joshua Tree). I felt like I was on another planet. I think I speak for all of us when I say that we found the desert landscape mesmerising. To look out our window at The Saguaro and see palm trees and mountains in 45 degree weather (celsius) was unreal. We were transfixed. It was nothing like home.”