Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Okay, obviously the stress of being an "executive" is rendering me much more appreciative of time off. Just as our March trip to Vegas was far and away the most fun I've ever had in Sin City, Memorial Weekend in the City of Angels was great. We got to see stuff we hadn't seen before: Hollywood & Highland, Universal Studios, the Museum of Tolerance, The Grove. And we did something we'd never done: ride public transit in L.A. We did both the subway and the bus, and it was fine. I can see why Metro won the award for best transit system in the U.S. The no-transfer thing was a little trying, though.

Anyway, speaking of buses, the MegaBus ride from SF down to LA was fine, too. I got to read a book this weekend! You have no idea what a feat that is.

Our other big enjoyment, sick as it sounds, was being back in a place with chain restaurants. Yes, I'm all for supporting our local economy and eating locally produced organic food and all that stuff. But the great thing about America is that you can go get crappy, mass-produced stuff any time you want. Except where we live, that takes a four-hour drive (with gas that's now at $4.35/gal.). So we took full advantage: breakfast at Johnny Rockets, lunch at Hard Rock Cafe, dinner at Buca di Beppo, lunch next day at Cheesecake Factory, dinner at Red Lobster. We didn't get to go to Macy's, but we did drop $50 in H&M and we went to two different Abercrombie & Fitch locations. I really do miss the soul-crushing conformity of American consumerism... sometimes.

The other great thing about metropolitan California besides the opportunity for conformity is the opportunity for diversity. We ate breakfast on Sunday at a Filipino cafe in a strip mall on Santa Monica Blvd. I have no idea what I ate. It was noodles with egg and carrot and supposedly pork. Anyway, it was good. I also appreciated the billboard for Nongjim noodle bowls--in Spanish!

Coming home has certain advantages, too, though. The cat is more affectionate than normal, the rhododendron in the backyard is in full bloom now, and our bed is infinitely more comfortable than the one at the Travelodge.


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